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Mutt (Ankara, Turkey)

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Russell Hobbs 22470 Steam Glide Travel Iron, 760 Watt
Russell Hobbs 22470 Steam Glide Travel Iron, 760 Watt
Price: £9.99

1.0 out of 5 stars Burn Baby Burn!, 2 Aug. 2015
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Iron caught fire after a couple weeks of occasional use.


How To Write Worksheets (Training Course For ELT Writers)
How To Write Worksheets (Training Course For ELT Writers)
Price: £6.00

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A Golden Ticket the World of ELT Writing through the Medium of the Humble Worksheet, 26 Mar. 2014
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Worksheetaholic Karen Richardson, of onestopenglish’s Guardian Weekly news lesson fame, launches ELT Teacher 2 Writer’s intriguing new Training Course for ELT Writers with this slender little e-book introduction to the wonderful wold of worksheets.

After an extended self-introduction in which she identifies the source of her addiction the self-styled worksheet junkie settles in with a description of the different aims of different worksheets from supplementing coursebooks to covering controversial topics.

Genre analysis of these differing types is followed by the breakdown of rough framework for the writing and adapting of your own worksheets with practical tips on such key factors as rubrics, timings, length and level as well as classroom management and teacher’s notes.

Insider advice comes at last on such assorted topics as sourcing materials, copyright, stylesheets, images and deadlines intended to lead the reader gently down the path to becoming a published ELT author with a string of hit worksheets to their name.

Each section is replete with the requisite reflective tasks to apparently qualify it as a course component as opposed to the instructional e-pamphlet it more closely resembles and the whole thing ends with a handover to the publishing platform which as yet seems far from functional.

The writer’s enthusiasm for the subject however rubs off and with aspirational affirmations from the likes of Sue Kay and Pete Sharma about how worksheets were their way in to the wacky world of ELT materials writing you will quickly find yourself cutting and pasting your own golden tickets.

<i>I can confidently say that I’ve found my writing niche and now know what I’m doing.</i>


From English Teacher to Learner Coach Student's Book: 39 activities to get organised, get motivated and get practising!
From English Teacher to Learner Coach Student's Book: 39 activities to get organised, get motivated and get practising!
Price: £1.19

4.0 out of 5 stars A Cheap & Cheerful Collection of Activities to Guide You from English Learner to English User, 23 Mar. 2014
Motivational messengers Daniel Barber & Duncan Foord, of LearnerCoachingELT fame, collect together 39 of the most activating activities from their brilliant little blog dedicated to getting readers motivated, organised and practised on the path from English learner to English user.

The first bank of six exercises, gathered under the subtitle <i>Motivate!</i>, focus on learners’ intrinsic and extrinsic motivation for learning, analysing their ARC factors for self-motivation, defining their relationship with English and developing good learning habits.

The next bank of six exercises, gathered under the subtitle <i>Organise!</i>, focus on setting and achieving learners’ goals using the GROW model, identifying and analysing the resources they have available, planning their English practice and reviewing their learning using ‘can do’ statements.

The final bank of 27 exercises, gathered under the subtitle <i>Practise!</i>, focus on enriching learners’ English language life by adapting every day activities such as surfing the Internet, writing out a shopping list or just staring out the train window into reflective training exercises.

The writers have created a varied menu of activities from which the reader can pick and choose according to level, location, time and required resources until they are fully satiated with a regimen a good learning habit, a rich English language life and a steaming hot plate of spaghetti bolognaise.

"A course book or grammar reference book will mostly help you <i>study</i> English. This book will help you <i>practise</i>."


Communicative Ideas (Student-centred language teaching)
Communicative Ideas (Student-centred language teaching)
by David Norman
Edition: Paperback
Price: £26.80

4.0 out of 5 stars An Ideological Primer from the Heyday of the Communicative Revolution, 26 Feb. 2014
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Scandinavian Ideologues Ulf Levihn, Jan Anders Hedenquist and the exotically named David Norman engage in communicative group work to transfer their ideas on student-centred language teaching from the pages of 'Språka' to those of us that don’t even know what an 'å' is.

Following a brief introduction the triumvirate of teachers briefly examine variations of interaction patters and error correction within an input/practice/follow-up lesson shape intended to ensure active and engaged students in a way which has since become widely practiced.

Far more significant however is the following outline of and brief commentary on eighty-two communicative activities from mainstream information gap and debate to fringe make conversation and team teaching to far out visualisation and sentence telepathy.

The triumvirate’s techniques are now quite old hat but many of the wide variety of activities still seem fresh and are likely to offer continued appeal to learners and teacher alike even though the communicative revolution that they were a part of has long since run out of praxis.


Messaging: beyond a lexical approach in ELT
Messaging: beyond a lexical approach in ELT
Price: £3.30

2 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An E-pistle from the Last Apostle of the Lexical Approach (Try Teaching That When Your Drunk), 28 April 2013
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Lexically ordained Michael Lewis acolyte George C. Woolard, who contributed to the grumpy old man of ELT's last words on the subject "Teaching Collocation" before taking to the pulpit himself with the somewhat celebrated "Key Words for Fluency" series, rises Lazarus-like from the grave of the lexical approach with one last e-pistle courtesy of the congregation at The Round.

The prodigal son begins from the observation that when heading off on pilgrimages to unholy lands most of us would rather clutch a phrase book to our bosom than a grammar book, dictionary or coursebook, and from this apparent rejection of the ELT commandments builds to the long awaited (and in many cases long forgotten) classroom practice for implementing the lexical approach.

Like the missionaries of old he begins by his holy mission by fearless braving the heathen lands of language learning himself and undertakes a study of Spanish concentrating as any good Lewisian would on the learning of meaningful chunks to gain insight into how we `language' and by extension how we should teach our learners to `language'.

Rattling the relics of his spiritual leader from the outset he repeats the catechism of the holy texts and condemns to perditions flames the apocrypha of ELT, including his own "Key Words for Fluency" series, which he confesses repeats the slot-and-filler sentence heresy, for failing to promote the actual language of the message over the possible language of the vast majority L2 learners.

He goes on to resanctify memorisation and translation as part of a rather dull and dower teaching methodology which he unjustly fear may be dubbed the Scottish approach. The Scottish approach itself is based on the idiosyncratically named textSbook which the teacher exploits in an actually workable lesson cycle for the lexical approach.

Although this brief sermon is unlikely to convert any to the Lewisian faith it is nonetheless an inspiring affirmation of belief those of us already in the choir that is well worth clutching to your bosom before you next set forth on your next crusade into the godforsaken ELT classroom and one can only pray it won't be another eight years before this prodigal son again returns.

"There are no games, no matching exercises and probably little in the way of fun or enjoyment."


Big Questions in ELT
Big Questions in ELT
Price: £5.94

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Everything You Wanted to Know about ELT (But Were Afraid to Google), 28 April 2013
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ELT revolutionary Scott Thornbury, of "Beyond the Sentence", "Uncovering Grammar" & pretty much every book you read for your DELTA fame, has been deeply missed these last few months while his influential "An A to Z of ELT" blog has been off the air, but the absence has been fruitful as he returns from digital exile with this back-engineered e-book courtesy of those tech-gurus at The Round.

Great Scott condenses two years of highly insightful blogging into a list of 21 key questions on everything from methodology to mother tongue and fluency to flow which he takes on in an entirely un-dogmatic way resulting in a few flesh wounds to, if not the actual sacrifice of, even some of his own sacred cows and of course far more questions than answers.

The big questions are for the most part well chosen, presumably having been the ones that drew the biggest response upon their original online appearance, and the authors easy going writing style draws the reader into to the sometimes quite complex subjects with entertaining references to his own and his colleagues real life teaching and learning experiences.

The questions are elaborated on with references to an extraordinary array of obscure publications demonstrating an apparently encyclopaedic knowledge of the literature which would have undoubtedly earned the author the sobriquet of the Chomsky of linguistics if it hadn't been for the rather unfortunate fact that Chomsky himself had already somewhat colourlessly claimed that title.

Of course the true revolution here is the long conversation's e-book, who'd had believed just a few years ago that we'd be able to take a small chunk of the interwebs, remove all those pesky hyperlinks and reorganise it sequentially in book form; one hopes that something new has been added but I really can't be bothered to trawl back through and check, which maybe proves a point.

"That the issues are framed as questions is partly due to the fact that there are still no answers..."


Oxford Word Skills: Intermediate: Student's Pack (Book and CD-ROM)
Oxford Word Skills: Intermediate: Student's Pack (Book and CD-ROM)
by Ruth Gairns
Edition: Paperback
Price: £21.50

3 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars An off-the-wall functional vocabulary resource..., 26 Sept. 2012
Vocabulary experts Ruth Gairns and Stuart Redman ("A Way with Words" & "Working with Words") continue their long collaboration with this innovative first entry into a 3-level self-study vocabulary series. Perhaps inspired by their recent work on the "Natural English" course they differentiate this latest series from the pack by giving it a functional framework which allows the words to be contextualised in full sentences in reasonably authentic encounters.

This middle entry aimed at CEF B1-2 contains such bizarrely entitled units as "I can talk about weddings and funerals" and "I can describe the universe" and while the sentence level structure continues to impress the subject matter makes it less valuable than its predecessor as a supplement to traditional coursebooks, nonetheless I keep a copy around for some off the wall extra lessons and time fillers as well as the occasional set self-study homework. The book also comes with a CD-ROM containing some point a click nonsense which still isn't really up to much and the exquisite cover and check card which I've yet to see anyone make any use of whatsoever.

The series, which covers 2,000 words over 80 units at each of the 3 levels, was quite rightly highly commended at the English-Speaking Union's Duke of Edinburgh English Language Book Award in 2009 as "an invaluable resource for teachers and a goldmine for learners" and if the number of times I have gone to my locker to find them missing are anything to go by then I am not the only one to thoroughly agree with this assessment. I can continue recommend this book except at funerals.
Comment Comment (1) | Permalink | Most recent comment: Jun 28, 2013 12:00 PM BST


Oxford Word Skills: Basic: Student's Pack (Book and CD-ROM) (Book & CD Rom)
Oxford Word Skills: Basic: Student's Pack (Book and CD-ROM) (Book & CD Rom)
by Ruth Gairns
Edition: Paperback
Price: £19.99

5.0 out of 5 stars An fantastically functional vocabulary resource..., 26 Sept. 2012
Vocabulary experts Ruth Gairns and Stuart Redman ("True to Life" & "Working with Words") continue their long collaboration with this innovative first entry into a 3-level self-study vocabulary series. Perhaps inspired by their recent work on the "Natural English" course they differentiate this latest series from the pack by giving it a functional framework which allows the words to be contextualised in full sentences in reasonably authentic encounters.

This initial entry aimed at CEF A1-2 concentrates on high frequency spoken vocabulary drawn from the Oxford 3000 corpus and is corralled into such aspirationally entitled units as "I can arrange a holiday" and "I can express my opinion" to give students a fulfilling sense of achievement. The phrase and sentence level structure inherent in this layout does however render it, unlike main competitor Michael McCarthy's "English Vocabulary in Use Elementary", unsuitable for beginners.

There is a nice variety of exercises laid out along a PPP structure relete with some nice opportunities for personalisation which has proved to be such a valuable supplement to traditional elementary coursebooks both for in class study and as set self-study homework that I just can't recommend it enough. The book also comes with a CD-ROM containing some point and click nonsense and pronunciation models and the fantastic cover and check card which aid self-study.

The series, which covers 2,000 words over 80 units at each of the 3 levels, was quite rightly highly commended at the English-Speaking Union's Duke of Edinburgh English Language Book Award in 2009 as "an invaluable resource for teachers and a goldmine for learners" and if the number of times I have gone to my locker to find it missing are anything to go by then I am not the only one to thoroughly agree with this assessment. I can recommend this book.


City in Crimson Cloak, The
City in Crimson Cloak, The
by Erdogan
Edition: Paperback
Price: £9.99

0 of 1 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars An outsider's look at the seedy side of Rio..., 6 Mar. 2010
Turkish author, human rights activist and former physicist Asl' Erdo'an makes her international début with this English language translation by Amy Spangler of her 1998 second novel which takes a semi-autobiographical look at her time as a struggling grad student in Rio.

Özgür, the young Turkish protagonist of the story, is slowly being absorbed by the city that she claims to loathe. Down and out having dropped out of her graduate program she choses to defend herself by he novel of the city, much as the author herself has tried to do.

The author's prose flows like poetry and positively drips bile that perfectly captures one view of the city in unlikely to please the Rio tourist board in what has been described as a sort of reverse postcard but the lead fails to engage and ironically I couldn't bring myself to care about her fate.

"I do believe I've seen enough of it."


Spaced - Definitive Collectors' Edition [DVD]
Spaced - Definitive Collectors' Edition [DVD]
Dvd ~ Jessica Stevenson
Price: £9.99

5.0 out of 5 stars A quirky little British sit-com which perfectly captured the lives of London's twenty-somethings at the turn of the millennium, 14 Dec. 2009
British TV producers Nira Park reunites comedian Simon Pegg ("Big Train" & "Is It Bill Bailey?"), actress Jessica Stevenson ("Mash and Peas" & "Armstrong and Miller") and director Edgar Wright ("Mash and Peas" & "Is It Bill Bailey?") for this Big Talk Productions sit-com which won two British Comedy Awards as well as BAFTA and Emmy nominations.

In the series twenty-somethings Tim Bisley (Simon Pegg) and Daisy Steiner (Jessica Stevenson) pose as a young professional couple in order to rent a cheap flat in Tufnell Park, London owned by landlady, Marsha Klein (Julia Deakin) initiating a series of increasingly surreal adventures with fellow resident Brian Topp (Mark Heap) and friends Mike Watt (Nick Frost) and Twist Morgan (Katy Carmichael).

British Comedy Award-nominated Simon Pegg and double British Comedy Award-winning Jessica Stevenson have a great chemistry and pitch perfect timing as the leading couple, whilst Pegg's flat mate Nick Frost puts in an superb performance at the head of a supporting cast that includes Julia Deakin, Mark Heap and Katy Carmichael as well as a heap of familiar British comedy guest stars.

Season one starts strongly and proceeds apace with some hilarious episodes that see Tim dealing with his heartbreak, through pastiche and parody that perfectly captures the emotions of its erstwhile heroes, with recurring support from Bill Bailey, Anna Wilson-Jones and Peter Serafinowicz as well as guest appearances from David Walliams, Paul Kaye and Michael Smiley.

Season two returns with more of the same as Tim and Daisy pursue their respective careers in a series of misadventures familiar to any twenty-something trying to make it in the big city and although things have already started to flag they are soon uplifted by the return of Bill Bailey, Peter Serafinowicz and Michael Smiley as well as guest appearances from Mark Gatiss, John Simm, Reece Shearsmith and Ricky Gervais.

The creators fill the series, pitched as a cross between "The Simpsons", "The X-Files" and "Northern Exposure", with pop-culture references, in jokes and occasional displays of surrealism in filmed with a single camera in Edgar Wright's unique style which borrows from the visual language of film to create a truly spectacular looking series which is pure comedy gold.

You can't dangle the bogus carrot of possible reconciliation in front of me whilst riding some other donkey.


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