Category: Housekeeping

Bits and pieces

Funny how half a year can slip by…

It is with some shock and no small degree of shame that I realised it has been that long since my last post here.

So I thought I would give you all a quick update on some of what I have been up to and what I’ll be doing in the near future,  additions to the site and things I’ve written for others elsewhere (click on the images below to view the pages.)

IH World DoS Conference 2015

It was a great honour to be invited to give a talk at this event, held in Greenwich, UK last February.  As far as I could tell, my talk on the Se7en Deadly Sins of ELT went down well, and provoked some robust debate as well.  Thanks to Shaun Wilden for asking me to be part of this event.  One of the fun challenges of the weekend was in Shaun’s and Niki Fortova’s own workshop, where the team I was on managed to film, edit and publish the following short movie trailer in a stupidly short period of time – great idea for class work.  If I manage to get permission from all those in the film, I’ll post it here later.

IATEFL and all that…

I’m also honoured to be part of the TDSIG Pre-Conference Event at IATEFL Manchester 2015, kicking off this coming Friday.  The theme revolves around sharing and solving problems and issues we are encountering in our teaching, and revealing and reveling in the rewards of our work.  Come along if you can – I think there are still tickets available that you can get early on the day if you are lucky.

I’ve contributed two posts to the IATEFL Teacher Development Special Interest Group (TDSIG) website:

link to a post for TDSIG by Anthony Gaughan

link to TDSIG blog post on top ten teaching books by Anthony Gaughan

In other news…

I’ve also updated my site a little, firstly by repairing a lost welcome video on my who’s behind all this? page:

link to welcome video

I’ve also added a short Q and A video with me about Celta that we filmed a few years back.

Link to Anthony talking about Celta

There are a few more housekeeping chores I plan to do shortly, such as repair broken links to some video content, and try to make available again the video of my and Izzy’s talk at IATEFL Harrogate back in 2010. The British Council, understandably, have mothballed that year’s IATEFL Online content, and so the video of our talk and interview have disappeared. I want to see if I can get permission to upload it under my own steam, but we’ll have to see.

new stuff

This is just a short note to update you all on some new things you can find here now.

image showing the basic training post series BASIC TRAINING is an ongoing series at sharing in straightforward and low-tech ways how to go about teaching, simply.   The first instalment is on how to get learners talking and capitalise on what they say and the brand new second instalment is on how to use stories and anecdotes for reading or listening practice.


image showing the se7en deadly sins talk video THE SE7EN DEADLY SINS OF ELT (talk) is an old video version of the talk I gave this year at IATEFL that I know some of you wanted to attend but couldn’t because the room was full.  Although the sound quality is not optimal and my hair is a good deal longer, I thought I would share it and I hope you find it useful. You can find it here.


I’ll keep adding to the site as and when I have time, so thank you for your patience and for reading!



This is all about simplifying language teaching and teacher education.

It is work-in-progress but I hope you find it useful.

Follow this link to find my blog posts.

Best wishes,


Most of what we say and do is not essential.

If you can eliminate it, you will have more time, and more tranquility.

Ask yourself at every moment: ‘is this necessary?’

– Marcus Aurelius –

Continue reading

Welcome to Teacher Training Unplugged 2011

whiteboard brainstorm - practice types
Let trainees simply “notice stuff” and see what you end up with…!

First of all, let me say sorry to those of you who have visited here over the last few months only to be rewarded with inactivity.  This blog has been decidedly quiet since mid-year 2010 and there is nothing to do but apologise.  In my defence, I suppose I could say that the following things took priority:

  • actually continuing the work of unplugging our CELTA course;
  • writing up articles and dealing with other correspondence to do with our unplugging experiment;
  • preparing ideas for IATEFL 2011 and a couple of other conferences (more on that later);
  • deciding to maintain this blog alone after my colleague decided they preferred to focus their energies on doing rather than reporting our work;
  • trying to make headway on my own MA studies;
  • running a CELTA centre.

But a new year is here and a new opportunity to explore and share what we have been doing in the Hanseatic North of Germany has come around.   Continue reading

No Sleep ’til Harrogate…

As some of you might know already, we will be running a workshop entitled Teacher Training Unplugged: simplifying initial teacher education at the IATEFL Conference in Harrogate, UK, on Thursday 8th April, 16:05-17:05 hrs (Conference Room).  The talk is part of the Teacher Training & Education Special Interest Group Special Programme on that day and we are very honoured to have been selected as part of it. Continue reading