The word of the year

The Oxford Dictionary says:  youthquake

Merriam-Webster says:  feminism

Collins says:  fake news

And says:  complicit

What’s your word of 2017? And what will 2018 be?



10,000 hours may not cut it

rock training

I have often told despairing students that it’s possible to learn a new language, but they need to remember the 10,000 hours rule : it takes at least this long to become an expert in a chosen field.

Cognitive psychologists have not exactly discredited the rule, but…

Just read this article by James Clear and see for yourselves:

Lessons on Success and Deliberate Practice from Mozart, Picasso, and Kobe Bryant

Taking Cave Art to a new level


An all-time favourite of mine, the EFL blog Tekhnologic has a two-part series of posts about using visual symbols in teaching:

Hieroglyphics for Teachers: Graphic Communication in the Classroom

Hieroglyphs for Teachers: Part 2

You can read about the concept (it’s apparently suitable for all levels, though I would recommend starting with elementary or pre-intermediate learners) and download printable icons which are less dramatic than this Lascaux painting, but very handy if you want to give clear and memorable instructions, encourage students to speak and, in a pinch, remember what you were planning to do next!