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Teaching Materials

This section looks at materials for TEFL/TESOL: books, software and suchlike.

A Basic English Grammar (book)‏‎

Author: John Eastwood; Ronald Mackin Publisher: OUP Details: paperback; pub. 1982 ISBN: 0194329402 An excellent first grammar which covers the basics of English grammar in clear and precise form. Ideal for new teachers and students to get to grips with the basics. This can be followed up with a book like Practical English Usage See Also Understanding and Using English Grammar Fundamentals of English Grammar   External Links Practical…

A Course in Language Teaching (book)‏‎

Author: Penny Ur Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: paperback, 389 pages; pub 1996 ISBN: 0521449944 This is an excellent reference book for foreign language teachers, offering stimulating insights and practical suggestions for both classroom application and personal professional growth. Both novice and experienced teachers will find this book extremely helpful in enriching their professional knowledge as well as sharpening their teaching competence. One of those books that deserve a…

A Training Course for TEFL‏‎ (book)

Billed as a practical handbook for trainees and practicing teachers, it includes: classroom techniques covering all four skills; testing; problem classes; phonetics; and syllabus design. All the topics contain practice material such as exercises, activities, and discussion points, as well as reference to existing textbooks. It is aimed squarely towards new and potential teachers and although published in 1983 it contains a lot of useful, practical information. If you aren’t…

Albert S. Hornby‏‎

Albert Sidney Hornby (1898-1978) was an English grammarian, lexicographer, and pioneer in various fields of English Language Teaching. He is often known as “the man who made dictionaries” after the phenomenal success of his meisterwerk, the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary and it was through his work, his dictionaries for learners, and his papers on language teaching for professionals, that he had a profound influence on English language teaching. This was continued by…

Anne Upczak Garcia‏‎

A writer and a bilingual teacher in Colorado, she has lived and taught in South America for many years. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and an Master’s degree in Multicultural, Bilingual and ESL education from the University of Colorado in Boulder. As a writer she has written for a variety of magazines including a sustainable business publication (LOHAS Journal), a travel periodical, and a Spanish-language magazine that…

Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching (book)‏‎

Author: Jack C. Richards ; Theodore S. Rodgers Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 278 pages; 2nd Ed, Pub.2001 ISBN: 0521008433 This book offers an invaluable overview of the principal approaches to language teaching over the past century, such as, Grammar Translation, Audiolingualism, Communicative Language Teaching, and the Natural Approach. Each approach and method is examined in terms of its theory of language and language learning, goals, syllabus, teaching activities…

Authentic TEFL Material

Authentic Material is material used in the TEFL‏‎ classroom which was originally created for native speakers of English.

The reason we use authentic material in class rather than material specifically written for learners is to provide more variety and authenticity to the lesson. It also allows you to tailor the content of the lesson more specifically to your class needs and interests.

For example, most ELT textbooks will cover general subjects…

Basic English Grammar (book)‏‎

Author: Betty Schrampfer Azar; Stacy A. Hagen Publisher: Pearson, Longman Details: paperback; 3rd Edition; pub. 2005 ISBN: 0131849379   This full student book with audio CD and answer key offers concise, accurate, level-appropriate grammar information with an abundance of exercises, contexts, and classroom activities. Ideal for non-native speakers of English at true beginner level. See Also Understanding and Using English Grammar Fundamentals of English Grammar   Basic English Grammar…

Betty Schrampfer Azar‏‎

Betty Azar is a teacher and the author of several English grammar workbooks that are very popular amongst English grammar enthusiasts. Her approach is in-depth and thorough and she is a proponent of the Grammar Based Approach Despite no formal training in TEFL she began teaching it during her first year as a teacher at Iowa State University…

Beyond the Sentence‏‎ (book)

Author: Scott G. Thornbury Publisher: Macmillan ELT Details: Paperback; 192 pages; Pub.2005 ISBN: 1405064072 This is a witty and incisive book where discourse is taken apart to show how it is organized and how it helps communication. The idea that we need to help students work ‘at the level of text’ as well as make correct sentences is not a new one. But here you will find suggestions –…

Business English Materials‏‎

There is an overall lack of really good, up-to-day coursebooks for Business English. The general consensus amongst teachers is that what is currently available on the market tends to have a rather uniform approach in style and a “one size fits all” attitude which merely reproduces familiar linguistic patterns in business contexts. However there are some exceptions, and for those out there teaching Business English here are some ideas for…

Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary (book)‏‎

Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 1562 pages; Pub. 2003 ISBN: 0521531063 The Cambridge Advanced Learner’s Dictionary doesn’t just help you find words quickly and understand them easily. It gives the vital support which advanced students need, especially with the essential skills: reading, writing, listening and speaking. Ideal for FCE, CAE, CPE, BEC and IELTS preparation. Key Features In the book 170,000 words, phrases and examples New words: all…

Cambridge Business English Activities‏‎ (book)

Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 128 pages; Pub.2000 ISBN: 0521587344   This spiral bound is part of the Cambridge Copy Collection. It is a well designed user-friendly resource book containing 43 photocopiable activities to use in your Business English class. The stimulating and highly adaptable material offers a variety of pair and group activities to practise the most common functions and language of business, from socialising and eating…

Cambridge University Press‏‎

Cambridge University Press (known colloquially as CUP) is a publisher given a Royal Charter by Henry VIII in 1534, and one of the two major university presses in the UK (the other being Oxford University Press). It published its first book in 1584, and has published at least one book every year since then, making it the oldest publishing and printing house in the world. It is both an academic…

Chambers Dictionary‏‎ (book)

Publisher: Chambers Details: Hardcover; 1825 pages; Pub.2003 ISBN: 055010013X This edition of the “Chambers Dictionary” combines the long-established virtues of its predecessors with a modern design and updated content. It offers coverage of English vocabulary, ranging from rare and archaic words to the latest slang and technical terms, and contains appendices with information from chemical elements to first names, and the plays of Shakespeare to the Greek and Hebrew…

Charles Hadfield‏‎

Charles Hadfield has worked as a teacher and trainer, administrator, and consultant in many places including Madagascar, Tibet, China, and France, with shorter visits to many African countries, most of Europe, and Japan. He often collaborates with his wife Jill on education projects as colleague and co-author. He studied at Southampton, London, and Bordeaux, and is currently teacher-training coordinator at the English Language Academy at the University of Auckland, NZ…

Chatterbox (book)‏‎

Author: Derek Strange Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 80 pages; Pub.2006 ISBN: 0194728013 This activity book is part of the new edition of the ever popular Chatterbox course for young beginners (7yrs and older). A complete comic-strip adventure story runs through each book, featuring ace detective Captain Shadow. This provides a memorable context for new language and maintains motivation. The book involves children in a variety of fun…

Choosing a Good Dictionary

For both teachers and students a dictionary is one of the most important books (or apps) you can own. This article offers tips for choosing the best possible dictionary for help in the classroom and with preparing lessons.

If you’re buying a dictionary then the best approach is to go into the shop and spend some time comparing the different dictionaries on offer till you find one which suits…

Clare McDowell

Clare McDowell is an Australian ELT author specializing in IELTS‏‎ preparation books. McDowell graduated with a BA in French & Spanish language and literature from the University of South Wales in Australia in 1979. This was followed by an MA in Applied Linguistics at the University of Sydney. She also has a DELTA‏‎ which she took in 1981. Following graduation McDowell moved into teaching and then language testing, test design and then…

Common Mistakes at CAE‏‎

Author: Debra Powell Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 64 pages; Pub.2005 ISBN: 0521603773   Common Mistakes at CAE…and How to Avoid Them is a nice resource book for teachers preparing students for the CAE exam. The book highlights the real mistakes that students make in the exam – and shows how to avoid them. Based on the analysis of thousands of actual exam scripts in the Cambridge Learner…

Compelling Conversations (book)‏‎

Author: Eric H. Roth ; Toni Aberson Publisher: BookSurge Publishing/ Chimayo Press Details: Paperback; 164 pages; Pub.2007 ISBN: 141965828X   Suitable for Upper Intermediate to Advanced Students, this book provides questions and quotations on timeless topics. Designed for non-native English speakers with a sophisticated worldview and still evolving language skills, the book includes 45 thematic chapters, 1,350 questions, and over 500 quotations and proverbs. It is jammed packed with authentic…

David Nunan‏‎

David Nunan is a linguist and ELT author who has published over 100 books and articles in the areas of curriculum and materials development, classroom-based research, and discourse analysis. Many of his English Language Teaching textbooks were written for Cambridge University Press, Oxford University Press and Thomson Learning. Nunan has also been involved in directing post-graduate programs in applied linguistics and language education in many different parts of the world…

Derek Strange‏‎

Co-author of Chatterbox and American Chatterbox for primary learners, and Double Take for young teenagers, Strange is also: author of Start Reading – a series of reading comprehension books for young learners course consultant for Chit Chat writer for Oxford’s range of graded readers In the past, Derek was an inspector of schools for the British Council in Britain for 9 years and a materials consultant for the British Council…

Descriptive vs Prescriptive Grammars

Grammar‏‎ books can generally be divided into two different types: Descriptive or Prescriptive. This article looks at the difference between them.

Very simply, a descriptive grammar looks at what people actually say in real life and then lays out a series of statements describing what is said. With modern technology helping a lot, huge collections of language examples have been made and analyzed using programs known as concordancers‏‎. These have…

Diane Larsen-Freeman‏‎

Diane Larsen-Freeman is Professor of Education, Professor of Linguistics‏‎, and Director of the English Language Institute at the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. She is also a Distinguished Senior Faculty Fellow at the School for International Training in Brattleboro, Vermont. Diane Larsen-Freeman topped her educational preparation in 1975 with a Ph.D. in Linguistics from the University of Michigan. She has been a conference speaker in over 50 countries of the…

Dictionaries‏‎

A Dictionary is an alphabetical list of words‏‎ with their meanings. Some dictionaries may also include the etymology‏‎ of the word, examples of usage, pronunciation (either using the International Phonetic Alphabet or some other system) and cultural notes. Dictionaries for learners will often include pictures as well. Dictionaries in the Classroom There are two main types of dictionaries found in TEFL‏‎: English-English and Bilingual. The former is in English only. It…

English for Academic Purposes (book)‏‎

Author: R. R. Jordan Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: paperback, 424 pages; pub. 2005 ISBN: 052155618X This guide and resource book for teachers provides a comprehensive overview of the field of English for Academic Purposes (EAP). It not only looks at study skills, but also at other central concerns of EAP, such as needs analysis, syllabus and course design, methodology and materials, learning styles, tests and exams, as well…

English Grammar In Use (book)

Author: Raymond Murphy Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: paperback, 390 pages; 3rd Edition 2004 ISBN: 0521537622 English Grammar in Use (3rd Edition) is a fully updated version of the classic grammar title. It retains all the key features of clarity and accessibility that have made Murphy’s book so popular with students and teachers. This new edition is designed to be flexible. The book is available both with and without…

English Teacher Suspended for Explicit Lyrics in the Classroom

An English teacher in Florida has been suspended after giving their 8th grade class (13-15 year olds) explicit lyrics to analyze.

The students were having problems understanding concepts such as puns, similes, and metaphors so rather than continue using more traditional material to explain them, the teacher brought in the lyrics to Lil Wayne’s song, 6 Foot 7 Foot which contain a number of taboo words.

Parents complained and…

Eric H. Roth‏‎

A writer and teacher, Eric H. Roth lives in Venice, California with his wife, Laurie Selik, and Chimayo, their wonderful border collie. Roth has traveled to over 30 countries, and has helped over 5,000 immigrants become naturalized United States citizens as citizenship director of CES Adult Education Center. Roth holds an M.A. in Media Studies from the New School University and a B.A. in Philosophy and American history from Wabash…

Explorations in Language Acquisition and Use (book)‏‎

Author: Stephen Krashen Publisher: Heinemann Details: Paperback; 112 pages; Pub.2003 ISBN: 0325005540 Stephen Krashen’s widely known theory of Second Language Acquisition has had a huge impact on all areas of second language research and teaching since the 1970s. This book amounts to a summary and assessment by Krashen of much of his work thus far, as well as a compilation of his thoughts about the future. In this book…

Fundamentals of English Grammar (book)‏‎

Author: Betty Schrampfer Azar Publisher: Pearson ESL Details: paperback; 3rd Edition; Pub. 2007 ISBN: 0132353350 A very interactive English grammar book, featuring many useful charts on major and minor grammar topics. A book you can use either to learn or to teach. Ideal for non-native speakers of English from post beginner to intermediate level. Also available as Full Student Book with Answer Key.   External Links Fundamentals of English…

Graded Readers‏‎ in English Language Teaching

Graded Readers are books which have been simplified, adapted, or written for a specific learner level of English. They can be fact or fiction, new works or older classics. They are ideal for the TEFL classroom as they allow students to read exciting, interesting stories in English which will not only help them with their language, but also let them enjoy some great storytelling. Different Levels This quote is from the Sherlock…

Grammar for English Language Teachers‏‎ (book)

Grammar for English Language Teachers by Martin Parrott won the prestigious  English Speaking Union‏‎ Duke of Edinburgh’s English Language Award in 2000. This comprehensive and practical guide is a refreshingly new type of grammar reference book and an invaluable bank of ideas, tasks and inspiration for developing language awareness of your students and your own. Each grammar point is explained in detail; each area of grammar is dealt with expansively and…

Grammar Practice Activities‏‎ (book)

Grammar Practice Activities by Penny Ur‏‎ is, as the subtitle reads, a Practical Guide for Teachers. This invaluable book is divided into two parts: Part One provides a clear and concise introduction to teaching grammar‏‎ in the foreign language classroom, plus a useful guide to designing and presenting grammar-practice activities and some tips for getting the most out of coursebook exercises. Part Two consists of nearly 200 game-like grammar practice activities…

Grammars‏‎ of English

An English Grammar – as a countable noun – is a book which explains the grammar of the English language. Compare this to grammar – as a non-countable noun – which is the set of rules which explain how language is used. Thus we can say a grammar is full of grammar. Choosing a Grammar Every TEFL teacher should have a grammar but with hundreds on the market (some of…

Heinemann‏‎

Heinemann is a publisher of professional development books and resources for teachers, from kindergarten through college. The titles published include books for theatre professionals, general books on education, and quality works of world literature. Heinemann Publishing was established in the spring of 1978 on New Hampshire’s seacoast, as a U.S. subsidiary of Heinemann UK. In 1996, Heinemann merged with Greenwood Publishing Group, to create Greenwood-Heinemann…

How English Works (book)‏‎

Author: Michael Swan ; Catherine Walter Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 368 pages; Pub.1997 ISBN: 0194314561   Winner of the English Speaking Union’s Duke of Edinburgh Book Competition, this is not your traditional, dull grammar practice book. Combining rich illustrations and authentic exercises, How English Works makes the learning and practising of grammar both a pleasure and a challenge. Still hot from the press, it became an instant hit…

How to Teach English (book)‏‎

Author: Jeremy Harmer Publisher: Pearson ESL Details: Paperback; 288 pages; 2nd Ed.; Pub. 2007 ISBN: 1405853093 This book, complete with DVD, has hints and tips to help with facing the hurdles of being a trainee. From difficult lessons (and students) to actual class prep work, from general issues about teaching & learning English to specific problems that English teachers frequently encounter, this books covers a wide range of issues…

Implementing the Lexical Approach (book)‏‎

Author: Michael Lewis Publisher: EMEA British English Details: Paperback; 176 pages; Pub.1997 ISBN: 1899396608 The subtitle reads “Putting Theory into Practice” which says it all. The book describes how the Lexical Approach works in the classroom and develops the theoretical position set out in Michael Lewis’ The Lexical Approach (book). It shows clearly how lexis, grammar and phonology interact in ways which directly affect how learners store new language…

J.C. Wells‏‎

Emeritus Professor of Phonetics at University College London, John C. Wells’ interests centre on the phonetic and phonological description of languages but also extend to lexicography and language teaching. He directs UCL’s annual Summer Course in English Phonetics. He is a frequent contributor to BBC radion (R2, R4, R5, BBC English). Based in Britain at UCL throughout his career, he has over the years given invited lectures in many different…

James J. Asher‏‎

A professor of psychology at San Jose State University in California, Asher is a researcher, writer, and originator of the Total Physical Response (TPR). He is the author of Learning Another Language Through Actions…

Jeremy Harmer‏‎

Jeremy P. H. Harmer was born in 1947. He is a popular ELT author, practitioner and trainer. Harmer was educated in the United Kingdom and graduated from the University of East Anglia with a BA Hons in English and American Studies. He then pursued his MA in Applied Linguistics at the University of Reading. He completed his studies with a Teacher Training certification from International House. Harmer has taught in…

Jill Hadfield‏‎

Jill Hadfield has been involved in EFL either as a teacher or teacher trainer for over 20 years and is the author of over 20 books for teachers, some written with her husband Charles. She has taught and trained teachers in Britain, France, China, Tibet, and Madagascar, and held workshops and courses for teachers around the world. She is currently senior lecturer in the School of English and Applied Linguistics…

Ladybugs, Tornadoes, and Swirling Galaxies‏‎

Author: Brad Buhrow ; Anne Upczak Garcia Publisher: Stenhouse Publishers Details: Paperback; 187 pages; Pub.2006 ISBN: 1571104003   This book aims to help English language learners discover their world through inquiry. It rests on the idea that content comprehension is the obvious next step in comprehension strategy instruction. Here comprehension instruction and ELL best practices are skillfully blended to explore inquiry as a literacy pathway for English language learners. The…

Learner English‏‎ (book)

Author: Michael Swan; Bernard Smith Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: paperback; 378 pages; 2 Edition, 2001 ISBN: 0521779391 With a subtitle that says it all: A Teacher’s Guide to Interference and other Problems, this practical guide compares the relevant features of a student’s own language with English, helping teachers to predict and understand the problems their students have. The book focuses on major problems of pronunciation, grammar, vocabulary and…

Learning Another Language Through Actions‏‎ (book)

Author: James J. Asher Publisher: Sky Oaks Productions Details: Paperback; 6th Ed.; Pub.2000 ISBN: 1560185023 In this classic book Asher walks readers through his teaching technique known now for over 30 years as TPR or Total Physical Response. The book includes easy to read background on TPR and has 150 hours of TPR classroom lessons to follow. This book is a powerful reference for teachers looking to incorporate the…

Learning Teaching‏‎

Author: Jim Scrivener Publisher: Macmillan ELT Details: Paperback; 224 pages; Pub.1994 ISBN: 0435240897 This book is not your average a how to book but a well written and informative text that analyzes the different aspects of teaching, the classroom as well as materials used, and gets you thinking! Particularly useful to experienced language teachers who wish to perfect their skill but a valuable read also for the novice ESL…

Lessons in Your Rucksack (book)‏‎

Author: John Hughes Publisher: Modern English Publishing Ltd Details: paperback, 192 pages; pub 2005 ISBN: 1904549071 A resource book of tips, ideas, activities and ready-made lesson plans for your first year of Teaching English as a Foreign Language. The complete TEFL survival guide for: newly qualified teachers; gap year travellers; language assistants; summer school teachers; volunteer teachers; The book gives advice and ideas to help you tackle your first…

Longman Pronunciation Dictionary‏‎ (book)

Author: J.C. Wells Publisher: Pearson ESL Details: Paperback; 80 pages; 2nd Ed. Pub.2000 ISBN: 0582364671 This dictionary deals with both English and American pronunciations and the variations of word pronunciations. It shows over 135,000 different pronunciations from British and American English, including technical vocabulary and proper names. If your intention is to acquire RP then this is the dictionary for you! A fully revised third edition is also available…

Macmillan ELT‏‎

Macmillan is one of the world’s leading publishers of English Language teaching and school curriculum materials, with over 150 years of publishing experience. Based in Oxford, UK, and operating in over 40 countries worldwide, the Macmillan Publishers work with teachers, students, institutions, educational authorities and Ministries of Education to develop coursebooks and supplementary materials to suit the needs of teachers and students of all levels. They have also developed a…

Marianne Celce-Murcia‏‎

Presently Professor Emerita in Applied Linguistics and TESOL at the University of California in Los Angeles and Dean of English Programs at the American University of Armenia in Yerevan. Over the years Dr. Celce-Murcia has been an active member of the American Association for Applied Linguistics (AAAL); the Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) and the California Association of Teachers of English to Speakers of Other Languages…

Market Leader (book)

Author: David Cotton ; David Falvey ; Simon Kent Publisher: Longman Details: Paperback; 176 pages; Pub.2008 ISBN: 1405881356 This Intermediate Business English Course Book is part of the Market Leader interactive series which ranges form beginners to advanced. It consists of Coursebook, plus Class CD and Multi-Rom. The pack includes ‘Case Studies’ that range from planning a project to choosing the best supplier; Practice exercises to enhance the skills needed to…

Martin Parrott

Martin Parrott worked for many years as a teacher and teacher trainer at International House, London, where he was also the Director of Teacher Training. He has taught and trained teachers in many parts of the world and in the Universities of London and Bristol. He currently teaches at the Lycée Français Charles de Gaulle, London, UK. In addition to Grammar for English Language Teachers, he is the author of…

Materials & Materials Writing

Materials is a general term to describe the TEFL coursebooks‏‎ and exercises used in teaching English. The author of such is known as a Materials Writer. Materials can include: exercise books grammar books videos various exercises & activities listening tapes etc… Value The TEFL‏‎ industry today is massive and worth billions of dollars around the world and much of this is generated by selling materials to students and schools. Thus the various ELT…

Michael Swan‏‎

Michael Swan – who describes himself as a “freelance writer” – is most well known as an established TEFL writer specializing in reference and teaching materials. His Practical English Usage is regarded as something of a grammar bible and many ESL teachers swear by it. His interests include pedagogic grammar, mother-tongue influence in second language acquisition, and the relationship between applied linguistic theory and classroom language-teaching practice, on which topics…

Mini Whiteboards in TEFL

Mini Whiteboards in class are a truly excellent way to achieve greater student participation and to allow the teacher to see immediately whether the class have understood the topic under discussion.

Using mini whiteboards can really make a major difference in your class and with a bit of effort it will achieve fantastic results! Trust us, we’ve tried it and we know!
Method
At the beginning of the…

New International Business English‏‎ (book)

Author: Leo Jones ; Richard Alexander Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 176 pages; Pub.2003 ISBN: 052153173X This course has 15 topic-based units which cover a wide range of business situations and provide frequent opportunity for discussion and thorough vocabulary development. The Student’s Book comes with a free BEC Vantage Preparation CD-ROM that contains an introduction to the BEC Vantage exam and a full practice test including audio. The Teacher’s…

Noam Chomsky‏‎

The founder of modern linguistics‏‎, Noam Chomsky was the first to devise a theory about the biological innateness of language. Born in Philadelphia in 1928 he studied linguistics at the University of Pennsylvania focusing on the systematic structure of Hebrew. After graduation, he became a linguistics professor at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, where he has remained ever since. Chomsky is renowned the world over for his groundbreaking theories in…

Out and About (book)‏‎

Author: Amy Hemmert; Rick Kappra Publisher: Alta Book Center Publishers Details: paperback, 189 pages; 2002 ISBN: 1932383018 An interactive course in Beginning English with a dynamic, student-centered approach. Each unit provides a well-defined series of picture-based vocabulary activities followed by contextualized, multi-skill practice activities. Key language and vocabulary are recycled and reinforced in creative and stimulating ways. Addressing SCANS competencies and CASAS requirements, Out & About provides a language…

Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary‏‎ (book)

Author: Albert S. Hornby Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 1780 pages; Pub. 2005 ISBN: 0194001067   Now in its seventh edition the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary with Compass CD-ROM gives instant access to the Oxford Advanced Learner’s Dictionary. The CD-ROM presents grammar patterns and collocations. It also enables access to the Oxford Genie software that instantly provides definitions as your cursor moves over words…

Oxford English Dictionary (book)

The Oxford English Dictionary (or OED) is one of the major English language dictionaries. It is published by Oxford University Press (OUP). Apart from defining words, it also traces their history and is used not only by people wanting to learn word meaning but also by scholars and academics wanting to understand more about the English language and how it has developed over the years. The OED claims that it…

Oxford Essential Dictionary: For Elementary and Pre-intermediate Learners of English‏‎ (book)

Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 488 pages; Pub. 2006 ISBN: 0194317188 Oxford Essential Dictionary is a new edition for Elementary and Pre-intermediate Learners of English. A helpful guide for lower level learners, it provides the essentials students need in the first stages of learning English. Especially suited for British English classes. External Links Oxford Essential Dictionary for Elementary and Pre-intermediate Learners of English (amazon.co.uk)…

Oxford Handbook of Commercial Correspondence‏‎ (book)

Author: A. Ashley Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 304 pages; Pub.2003 ISBN: 0194572137 A revised and updated reference guide to writing effective business correspondence. External Links Oxford Handbook of Commercial Correspondence (Teacher’s Book) (amazon.com) Oxford Handbook of Commercial Correspondence (Teacher’s Book) (amazon.co.uk)…

Oxford University Press‏‎

Oxford University Press or OUP is a publishing house and a department of the University of Oxford in England. It is the largest university press in the world, being larger than all the American university presses combined with Cambridge University Press. It has branches all over the world including India, Pakistan, Canada, Australia, New Zealand, Malaysia, Singapore, Nigeria and the Republic of South Africa. It is one of the world’s…

Pearson ESL‏‎

Pearson is an educational publishing house with a comprehensive range of educational programs, in all subjects, for every age and level of student, from preK-12 through higher education and on into professional life. Pearson’s businesses and brands include: Prentice Hall, Longman, Scott Foresman, Addison Wesley, Allyn & Bacon, Benjamin Cummings, PASeries, ELLis, Celebration Press, PEMSolutions, SuccessMaker, Waterford, and Family Education Network. Pearson’s other primary operations include the Financial Times Group…

PELT (book)‏‎

Author: David Nunan Publisher: McGraw Hill ELT Details: Paperback; 342 pages; Pub.2003 ISBN: 0072820624 The entire PELT (Practical English Language Teaching) series offers a thorough yet practical overview of language teaching methodology for teachers and trainee teachers. The principles outlined in each chapter are richly illustrated with vignettes and extracts from real classrooms so the reader can see what the principles “look like” when realized in classroom teaching. This…

Penny Ur‏‎

Penny Ur is a renowned ELT‏‎ expert, author and teacher trainer. She was educated in the UK and earned her first MA at Oxford University. She then studied for her PGCE‏‎ at Cambridge University and later got her MA TEFL at Reading university. In 1967 she emigrated to Israel where she began teaching English at primary and secondary level. She was for a time head of the M.Ed program in foreign-language teaching at Oranim Academic College…

Peter Mark Roget

Peter Mark Roget FRS (18 January 1779 – 12 September 1869) was a British doctor, writer, and inventor but also most famous nowadays as a lexicographer and author of Roget’s Thesaurus. Background to Roget’s Thesaurus Although he had no lexicographic training or experience, in 1805, aged 26, he began to catalog words and organize them according to their meaning rather than their spelling as in traditional dictionaries‏‎. To do this he kept…

Planning Lessons and Courses (book)‏‎

Author: Tessa Woodward Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 266 pages; Pub.2001 ISBN: 0521633540 This handbook will help you design sequences of work for your ESL/EFL classes. Whether it’s plucking out an activity to start or finish a lesson or whether you’re at your wit’s end on how to deal with a large and unruly class – this book offers ideas and help. It deals with the kinds of…

Politics Cut from ELT Materials

In Japan, the Osaka board of education has cut material from its online course deeming it too political.

The board found the material objectionable and said it promoted the image of the mayor of Osaka to first year Junior High students.

The material was to be used for practicing the third person singular and included statements like these:
My name is Toru Hashimoto. I work hard…

Practical English Usage (book)‏‎

Author: Michael Swan‏‎ Publisher: Oxford University Press‏‎ Details: hardcover; 688 pages; 3rd Edition 2005 ISBN: 019442099X A superb grammar for teaching English. This guide, trusted the world over, covers all main problem areas and is a must-have for any teacher. Highly recommended! External Links Practical English Usage (amazon.com) Practical English Usage (amazon.co.uk)…

Roget’s Thesaurus (book)

Roget’s Thesaurus is an English language thesaurus created by Peter Mark Roget in the 19th century. It was first published in 1852 and contained some 15,000 words. Subsequent editions have enlarged on this. Although there are other thesauri, the term Roget is often almost synonymous with thesaurus (in much the same way as the brand name Hoover is synonymous with vacuum cleaners). Since first being published it has never been out of…

Scott G. Thornbury‏‎

He has been working in the private EFL sector as teacher, director of studies, school director and teacher trainer for many years. He now lives in Spain but his previous experience includes teaching and training in the UK and in his native New Zealand. Teacher education has always been his special interest and was the subject of his MA dissertation at the University of Reading. He has been involved with…

Sensitive Subjects in TEFL

Some things are better left unsaid.

There are certain subjects which should – in general – be avoided in your English teaching classroom, especially when you are working abroad and are (effectively) a guest in a foreign country.

These subjects include:

Sex
Religion
Politics
Taboo Words‏‎

The simplest rule is not to teach any of the above subjects. Avoid them…

Shakespeare

William Shakespeare (26 April 1564 – 23 April 1616) was an English poet and playwright, widely regarded as the greatest writer in the English language and the world’s pre-eminent dramatist. His surviving works consist of about 38 plays, 154 sonnets and several poems. His plays have been translated into every major living language and are performed more often than those of any other playwright. The language of Shakespeare is (mostly unknowingly) still…

Simple Listening Activities (book)‏‎

Author: Jill Hadfield; Charles Hadfield Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 80 pages; Pub. 1999 ISBN: 0194421686 This book contains 30 activities at elementary level, complete with ideas for boardwork and pictures teachers can copy. All the activities are simple and adaptable. They are particularly well-suited to teachers who teach privately and have few resources apart from a board, paper, and pens. Each activity has 3 main stages: warm-…

Simple Reading Activities (book)‏‎

Author: Jill Hadfield; Charles Hadfield Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 80 pages; Pub. 1999 ISBN: 0194421732 This book contains 30 activities at elementary level, complete with ideas for boardwork and pictures teachers can copy. All the activities are simple and adaptable. They are particularly well-suited to teachers who teach privately and have few resources apart from a board, paper, and pens. The book sets out clearly the steps…

Simple Speaking Activities (book)‏‎

Author: Jill Hadfield; Charles Hadfield Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 80 pages; Pub. 1999 ISBN: 0194421694   This book contains 30 activities at elementary level, complete with ideas for boardwork and pictures teachers can copy. All the activities are simple and adaptable. They are particularly well-suited to teachers who teach privately and have few resources apart from a board, paper, and pens. This book is part of the…

Simple Writing Activities (book)‏‎

Author: Jill Hadfield; Charles Hadfield Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 72 pages; Pub. 2001 ISBN: 0194421708 This book contains 30 activities at elementary level, complete with ideas for boardwork and pictures teachers can copy. All the activities are simple and adaptable. They are particularly well-suited to teachers who teach privately and have few resources apart from a board, paper, and pens. This book is part of the Oxford…

Stenhouse Publishers‏‎

Stenhouse Publishers started in 1993 with two employees in a one-room attic walk-up in York, Maine. That fall six titles were published. Today, Stenhouse Publishers has a catalogue of more than 200 books and videos. Stenhouse publishes professional development books and videos by teachers and for teachers. Their titles cover a range of literacy topics, from reading comprehension to classroom management. Their books and videos help K-12 teachers deepen their…

Step Up to IELTS (book)‏‎

This book introduces IELTS‏‎ and how to teach it. It covers essential exam skills and language for IELTS in approximately 60 hours of teaching time, and familiarises students quickly with the exam. The course covers both the Academic and General Training modules. It provides students with invaluable advice on how to maximise their band score in the exam. Shorter, achievable exam-type tasks build students’ exam skills, before students try the…

Stephen Krashen

Professor emeritus at the University of Southern California. Krashen is a linguist, an educational researcher, and an activist.

Krashen has contributed to the fields of Second Language Acquisition (SLA), Bilingual Education, and Reading.

He is credited with introducing various influential concepts and terms in the study of second language acquisition, including the Acquisition – Learning Hypothesis, the Input Hypothesis, the Monitor Theory, the Affective Filter, and…

Teaching Adult Second Language Learners (book)‏‎

Author: Heather Mckay ; Abigail Tom Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 244 pages; Pub.1999 ISBN: 0521649900 This is the latest in the excellent Handbooks for Language Teachers series edited by Penny Ur. The book addresses the needs of adults studying English. It provides a useful summary of the principles involved in teaching adults as well as a wealth of activities specifically designed for adult learners. The text is divided…

Teaching and Assessing Phonics (book)‏‎

Author: Jeanne S. Chall ; Helen M. Popp Publisher: Education Pub. Service Details: Paperback; 163 pages; Pub.1996 ISBN: 0838823149 Teaching phonics should be done in small incremental steps, though teachers should be somewhat flexible and open to go back or forward a few steps if it helps their students. There is a generally accepted order in which phonics is taught though choosing what to teach and when is not always…

Teaching English Abroad (book)‏‎

Author: Susan Griffith Publisher: Vacation Work Publications Details: paperback, 576 pages; 8th Edition pub. 2010 ISBN: 1854583522 Griffith’s book is a reference source for British or Britain-based teachers who are looking to embark on an EFL teaching career in Western Europe. Although when it was first produced it was well received, in recent years the book has become increasingly outdated due to the internet and has come in for…

Teaching the Spoken Language (book)‏‎

Author: Gillian Brown; George Yule Publisher: Cambridge University Press Details: Paperback; 176 pages; Pub.1983 ISBN: 0521273846 Not exactly hot from the press (it was first published in 1983) but still a book teachers recommend when it comes to teaching spoken production and listening comprehension. The book presents in a highly accessible form the results of the author’s important research on teaching and assessing effective spoken communication. The authors examine…

Techniques and Principles in Language Teaching (book)‏‎

Author: Diane Larson-Freeman Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 208 pages; 2nd Edition; Pub. 2000 ISBN: 0194355748 This book provides a practical overview of the most important teaching methods in the ESL field. The book devotes a chapter to each technique, from Grammar/Translation to ALM to Communicative Language Learning. It is clearly written and the methods are presented in a format that facilitates pre-service and in-service teachers’ understanding of…

TEFL Coursebooks‏‎

Coursebooks are extensively used in the TEFL‏‎ classroom and also big business with the ELT publishing industry worth billions every year who churn out books by the dozen to make money. There are many different coursebooks available to the teacher, however it must always be remembered that there is no single coursebook which is ideal for a class. The debate on whether to use a coursebook or not has been going on…

TEFL on Film

TEFL on Film are those movies or television series which have as a theme or plot point, the Teaching of English as a Foreign Language. Here we present a short list ordered by date and review them. If you know of any others including TEFL then do please email us with details. English Teachers – the series (2010) This is a web series made in Japan about English teachers in a small…

The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation‏‎ (book)

Author: Jane Straus Publisher: Jossey Bass Details: paperback, 176 pages; 10th Edition 2008 ISBN: 0470222689 An Easy-to-use Guide with Clear Rules, Real-world Examples, and Reproducible Quizzes. Hailed as one of the best grammar resources available, this concise, entertaining, user-friendly workbook includes easy-to-understand rules, abundant examples, dozens of reproducible exercises, and pre- and post-tests to help teach grammar to middle and high school, college, ESL, and home schooled students as…

The Good Grammar Book‏‎ (book)

Author: Michael Swan ; Catherine Walter Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Paperback; 304 pages; Pub.2003 ISBN: 0194315207 This grammar book teaches all the grammar needed for speaking and writing in English. It explains the rules, shows how the language works, and gives plenty of practice. It has pre-tests and review tests. It also commits a number of pages to each grammar point, with an equal amount of practice pages. It…

The Grammar Book‏‎ (book)

Author: Marianne Celce-Murcia ; Diane Larsen-Freeman‏‎ Publisher: Cengage ELT Details: Hardcover; 854 pages; 2nd Ed. Pub.1998 ISBN: 0838447252   The Grammar Book is a course book for future ESL/EFL teachers. It presents grammar and activities in a way that helps teachers to grasp the basics and get them across to learners. The book deals with the linguistic system and details of English grammar, providing information on how structures are used…

The Non-Native Teacher (book)‏‎

Author: Peter Medgyes Publisher: Hueber Macmillan Prentice Hall Phoenix ELT Details: paperback, 144 pages; pub 1998 ISBN: 3190066310 Despite the many advantages that a teacher sharing the students’ MT can bring, native speakers are always preferred when it comes to hiring. Yet teachers who are non-native speakers can bring a lot to the classroom. This book examines the differences in teaching attitudes between teachers of English who are native…

The Practice of English Language Teaching‏‎ (book)

Author: Jeremy Harmer Publisher: Pearson Longman ELT Details: paperback; 4th Edition; Pub. 2007 ISBN: 1405853115 This Longman Handbook for language teachers comes with DVD in its 4th edition. The book looks at various teaching approaches and discusses current ELT issues but it is also a practical teaching guide that covers everything from intonation through to the use of audio-visual equipment in class. With its emphasis on the communicative approach…

Thesaurus

A thesaurus (plural thesauri or thesauruses) is a book of words collected together according to meaning and similarity. In other words, words grouped according to semantic field. Compare this to a dictionary which lists words alphabetically and then gives their meanings. A typical dictionary might show the word, it’s word class‏‎ and then an explanation: teacher noun someone whose job is to teach, especially in a school. On the other…

Time and the Verb: A Guide to Tense and Aspect‏‎ (book)

Author: Robert I. Binnick Publisher: Oxford University Press Details: Hardcover; 584 pages; Pub.1991 ISBN: 019506206X Hailed as one of the most important books to have appeared on tense and aspect, Binnick’s guide provides the reader (whether student or advanced scholar) with a comprehensive perspective, both diachronically and synchronically, into this very complicated area. From classical Greek and Latin grammar through to the latest proposals in formal semantics, the range…

Tony Buzan

Born in London in 1942, Tony Buzan is the originator of mind mapping and one of the pioneers of the “Brain science”. He topped his education with a double Honours in Psychology, English, Mathematics and the General Sciences from the University of British Columbia in 1964. He is the author of the million−copy bestsellers‚ Use Both Sides of Your Brain‚ Use Your Head and The Mind Map Book. He lectures…

Uncovering Grammar‏‎ (book)

Author: Scott G. Thornbury Publisher: Macmillan ELT Details: Paperback; 12 pages; Pub.2005 ISBN: 140508006X As teachers we often talk about “covering” grammar points. Thornbury explains why it is more useful to think about how we “uncover” grammar, to reveal the workings of the system to our students and encourage them to notice what is going on. The book uses extracts from exchanges in real classrooms, authentic texts and language…

Understanding and Using English Grammar (book)‏‎

Author: Betty Schrampfer Azar Publisher: Pearson ESL Details: paperback; 475 pages; 3 Edition; Pub. 1998 ISBN: 013958661X This book is a comprehensive reference grammar/workbook for non-native speakers of English at intermediate to advanced level. The book is divided into chapters covering notorious grammar points, including: verb tenses, modals, passive voice, gerunds and infinitives, singular and plural, adjective clauses, noun clauses, connecting expressions, and conditional sentences. There are also appendices…

Use Both Sides of Your Brain (book)

Although the first edition of this book was written in 1974, it is still considered as an ideal presentation of the “modern approach” to mind mapping. Use Both Sides of Your Brain: New Mind-Mapping Techniques uses the latest research on the workings of the human brain, Buzan provides step-by-step exercises for discovering the powers of the right side of the brain and learning to use the left side more effectively…

Vanessa Jakeman

Vanessa Jakeman is an ELT author most well known for her IELTS books published by CUP. Vanessa worked as an EFL teacher for many years including 10 years in Hong Kong where she taught and worked for the HK Examinations Authority as well as UCLES. During this time she worked on IELTS exams…

Zellig Harris‏‎

Born in Ukraine in 1909, he was taken to the United States (PA) as a child. A student in the Oriental Studies department, he received his bachelor’s (1930), master’s (1932), and doctoral (1934) degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. He began teaching at Penn in 1931, and would go on to found the linguistics department there in 1947, the first such department in the country. Harris carried the structural linguistic…

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