Welcome to HLS English class - the best place to learn English in Kuantan, Malaysia. English class for children and adults conducted in a fun and creative way. Learn English with Horne Learning Services. English speaking and conversation, reading, writing and listening training based in Kuantan. This is what we do . . .

Monday, 23 December 2013

Johnny English Reborn - Movie Week

As it's Christmas, we are conducting another Movie Week this month, featuring Rowan Atkinson again, the famous actor who plays Mr. Bean and Johnny English.


In this Johnny English sequel, Rowan Atkinson stars once again as the MI7 detective who is charged with stopping the planned murder of the Chinese Premier by a secret organization called Vortex. He soon discovers that the key member of Vortex is one of his own. As can be expected, the story develops with many funny twists and turns. Eighteen questions await our students to test their reading, comprehension and listening skills.


Wednesday, 27 November 2013

November 2013 Movie: Johnny English




Rowan Atkinson provides the entertainment for our latest Movie Week as he stars in "Johnny English" as an English secret service detective.

Pascal Sauvage, a French heir to the English throne forces the Queen to abdicate so he can become King and create the largest prison in the world - encompassing the whole of England.

The nutty Johnny English, and his more rational sidekick Bov, set out to thwart Savage's plans, with many laughs along the way!

Wednesday, 6 November 2013

Putting the puzzle pieces together




I'm sure you are all familiar with a puzzle, or jigsaw puzzle. I remember completing numerous jigsaw puzzles when I was young, starting with the corners and straight edges and then gradually filling in the middle pieces, piece by piece.

The months of November and December at Horne Learning Services sometimes feel like working our way through a complex jigsaw puzzle.

Students come and students go. Students stop classes with us and new students begin classes. Some families enjoy going balik kampung, back to their home town to visit extended family during the long school holidays. Others like to go on holiday, or as Americans would term it, vacation, either in Malaysia or overseas.

We will do our very best to accommodate all of our students and their families' travel plans during November and December. We are also aware that some students may change school times in the new year and will therefore need to rearrange their classes with us.

Like a jigsaw puzzle, it's never easy, but we will try to run as smoothly as possible, arranging our students piece by piece.


Happy holidays, travel safe. Thank you to our students who have stopped for various reasons. It has been a pleasure teaching you. Thank you to the new students we have welcomed this month, we hope you will enjoy learning with us. And thank you to our students who remain through the puzzling months of November and December, we appreciate working with you!

Wednesday, 30 October 2013

November and school holidays are fast approaching

November is almost here, which also means the long school holidays are upon us. We will soon be planning the schedule for November 2013 which will include "Movie Week", a student favourite, and "Games Week." Games Week includes games such as Scrabble, Pictionary, Boggle and Connect 4 among others.

Posing with students in our Tuesday morning class


We like to unwind a little with our students during the school holiday by planning some fun exercises and just going a little easier.

Two of my students on Tuesday night performing a dance routine at the end of a recent class

We wish a "Happy Holidays" to our students and hope you enjoy our November classes starting next week!

Thursday, 17 October 2013

Mr. Duncan's Birthday

October at Horne Learning Services saw Mr. Duncan turn 31. We were fortunate enough to celebrate with some students both in class, and elsewhere.

Our student, Sharmayne, and her mother joined us at The Zenith Hotel to celebrate Mr. Duncan's birthday

Cutting the cake as the three princesses look on!

Mr. Duncan's adult students also provided birthday cake and other refreshments during their class:




Wishing all of our students with October birthdays a very happy birthday and best wishes for the year ahead!

Wednesday, 9 October 2013

The Word Bank




To our students, young and adult, and to the parents of our students, here is an explanation of some exercises we are doing this month.

During the month of October 2013 we are conducting exercises from "The Word Bank." The Word Bank consists of various English words, which are made up of correctly and incorrectly spelled words, as can be seen above. Identifying the misspelled words and correcting them is one of four exercises being carried out this month.

In the second week of October, students will be asked to make 3 lists of words from The Word Bank, by searching for 'feelings', 'colours' and 'occupations.' For example, 'excited', 'pink' and 'pilot.' Once they have completed their lists, they will write sentences by combining 3 words in their lists. For example, "The pilot was excited because he saw a pink cloud."

In week 3 students will be searching The Word Bank for synonyms (words which are similar in meaning) of 'happy', 'big' and 'very.' Perhaps you can find some yourself!

The final exercise throughout week 4 will involve our students looking for words that begin with 'a', 'b' and 'c'. They will then practice writing sentences with those words in the past, present and future tenses.


The Word Bank is a large collection of grammar exercises, but designed to be done in a much more fun way than just going through page after page of workbook questions. Practicing English grammar can, and should, be a lot more fun and interesting!



Monday, 23 September 2013

The Pink Panther - Movie Week September 2013

The Pink Panther features for movie week this September at Horne Learning Services.


Steve Martin plays the role of the haphazard police detective, Inspector Jacques Clouseau. He is assigned to solve a murder case in which a diamond (the pink panther) is stolen.

There are many funny twists and turns as Inspector Clouseau unwittingly makes his way through the plot. I'm sure students will find this movie very entertaining while answering 16 questions to test their listening and observation skills.

Here's a little teaser for you to laugh at. English pronunciation humour!



Wednesday, 4 September 2013

Letter to Kuantan Town Council (Majlis Perbandaran Kuantan, MPK)

Dear Kuantan Town Council,


After a week of discussions with children in Kuantan ranging from 7-16 years of age, and presentations from adults in my English classes, I have prepared the following suggestions to help our town of Kuantan make some much-needed improvements. I hope you will take some time to consider the following points.

I realise that not all of these points may fall under your jurisdiction, but I'll include them anyway as an insight into what young citizens of Kuantan are thinking, and how adults living here explain changes they would like to see implemented.


One of the main issues is the change in direction of a number of roads around Kuantan town centre. While many people are now adapting to it, there appears to be a desire for the roads to be returned to usual. There was also a suggestion of expanding some of the main roads to four lanes.

Remaining on the same topic of infrastructure, the majority of my students would like to see the roads in Kuantan re-laid with stronger materials. This is due to numerous pot-holes on various roads, making it difficult to drive.

We are very pleased with the inception of enhanced public transport in the rapidKuantan fleet of buses. However, it would be nice in the future to see these public transport lines expand to residential areas, making it easier for people to locate a bus stop. Perhaps in the future there may also be sufficient funds and plans to create a LRT line similar to that in Kuala Lumpur.

The next point concerns littering. An overwhelming majority of the 100 or so students I teach expressed concerns about rubbish disposal in Kuantan. It would be a welcome addition to enforce punishments on those caught throwing rubbish, and to provide a lot more rubbish bins in all areas to reduce the amount of rubbish ending up on the floor and in drains. We frequently witness the open-air burning of rubbish in Kuantan which we would also like to be halted.

During our discussions, some people brought up the desire to have more trees being planted in Kuantan and were wondering why we see a number of trees being cut down quite regularly. While Kuantan grows and more buildings spring up, we believe there should be an equal opportunity for trees to be planted.

Building more shopping malls featured prominently in our discussions in English class. This was voiced particularly by the younger people who feel that Kuantan is a little boring without a great deal of places to go during holidays and free time. Fun places for children to go like Kidzania or Kizsports were very popular suggestions. One participant who lives in Indera Mahkota also wanted to see more coffee shops opened in this area in hopes that Indera Mahkota can steadily grow and expand like the main Kuantan town area.

To improve children's education and interest in study, it was offered by people young and old that there really should be more public libraries in Kuantan. The ability to loan good books from a library is very low here and this would be a much welcomed addition. In order to obtain more information and history about our home town, we would also like to see an improved information centre which would be a benefit to locals and tourists alike.

Teluk Chempedak beach is one of the most popular places in Kuantan but we fear that it has lost some of its beauty and charm with the addition of so many new shops and stalls along the beach front. These stalls obstruct the view of the beach and sea and diminish the experience somewhat. We wonder if these sort of stalls could be cut down so that visitors can simply enjoy the view of the beach without having things being sold at every step.

Regarding public safety issues, voice was raised in favour of more dynamic lighting along roads and residential areas thereby decreasing the risk of accident and theft. Installation of CCTV cameras in strategic areas could also be something to be considered.

Some of my students would like to see the Kuantan Town Council organise special seasonal festivals. Such festivals could bring the people of Kuantan together, help us learn and appreciate each other's religion and culture, and provide much enjoyment.

Finally, as Kuantan is growing steadily and becoming a more prominent place on the map of Malaysia, we see it fitting to have a certain landmark to distinguish our town and to be symbolic of Kuantan. A Kuantan Tower similar to those in KL and Alor Setar would create a new tourist attraction and be a symbol of pride for the people of Kuantan.

I hope you have found some of our suggestions to be worthwhile. We have certainly had an inspired time thinking about and discussing these possible improvements to the beautiful town of Kuantan. We await your response.




Yours sincerely,

Mr. Duncan D. Horne
Chief English Trainer at Horne Learning Services,
comprising contributions from all the students of Horne Learning Services.




Thursday, 1 August 2013

If you had 3 wishes, what would you wish for?

Last week we gave our students the task of speaking about the following question:

"If you had 3 wishes, what would you wish for?"

There were plenty of serious and amusing answers, and the best will be featured in this post.


One boy named Win shared 3 well-thought-out wishes. His first wish was to have power over time; second, to be immortal; and third, to have infinity wishes!

Haqeem and Yu Chen similarly wished for more wishes.

Zoe wanted a castle while Eugene wished for a UFO so he could go and visit aliens in space! Zhen Hui wished he could travel around the universe to find other life on different planets.

Jin Chiao believes Ironman is real and wished that this superhero would give him lots of suits so he can fly like Ironman.


Yu Chen, Siew Man and Yie Hong all wished there was no more school because it's boring. Xiang Qiao didn't want to totally eliminate school but did want longer school holidays.

Staying on the subject of education, Hui Zhi wants the government to change the school time as the start time is too early, while Kai Chin just wished she could pass her history exam!

On a more serious note, Cindy would like to go back in time to correct the mistakes she has made. Xing Wei said he would only use one wish and give the other two to his mum and dad. The following student gave the most emotional and sincere speech, and will remain anonymous here. This student wished he would stop being bullied and cried while sharing this with the class. Very brave child. (*At the time of writing, I've been informed that the situation has been resolved)




Sharmayne (pictured above) very kindly said she would buy a car for Teacher Duncan! Hope she wasn't thinking of a toy car like this one ;)

Muiz wants to be the richest man in the world while Kghartie would like to become the best squash player on the planet.

Nicolas, for reasons unknown, wished that the weather in Malaysia would be more like England's weather. (I still don't know what's so appealing about constant drizzle, grey skies, and cold wind?!) Perhaps he just wants it to be a little cooler over here :)

Irfan wished for Malaysia to beat Barcelona 2-0 in an upcoming friendly football match. I'm pretty sure that would indeed need a magic wish to come true!


Lavender wished she could go to Hello Kitty town in Johor Bharu while Nazuan wants to be the boss of Legoland.

A thin girl, Hui Xin, wished she could become fatter (I wouldn't mind putting another 5kgs on either!).

Going along with the Despicable Me 2 craze, Xiang Meng wished he could have many minions to help him do his work.

Finally, perhaps the most disturbing wish of all was shared by Kee Yok. He wished for a spellbook so he could kill his sister! Nothing like sibling rivalry!



Wednesday, 24 July 2013

July Week 4 at Horne Learning Services

So we are having an interesting week 4 of July at Horne Learning Services. First of all students are speaking to the class on the following question: 

"If you had three wishes, what would you wish for?"

It's only Wednesday but we've already had some entertaining answers and one very genuine, sincere and emotional response.




I'm also passing out a short questionnaire to our students to get some feedback from them about our English classes and their teacher. It's great, and sometimes funny, to hear what they think. I appreciate their blunt honesty at times, too!

Finally we are taking class photos this week, with an example of the Tuesday night class, above.

At the end of the week we'll look through all of the completed questionnaires and see what improvements we can make to enhance our English classes further.


Monday, 22 July 2013

July in review

July was an exciting month for us at Horne Learning Services. It has passed by so quickly as well. Today is the 4th week of July where students will be speaking about what they would wish for if they had 3 wishes. They will also be doing some creative writing, which they enjoy a lot. 

This week I'll also be taking 10 minutes or so for students to fill out a short questionnaire to see how they feel about our English classes. In order to keep this blog up to date, we'll also be taking some class photos.

Last week we watched the movie "Ratatouille" with our students. It was lots of fun and generally they answered the questions very well.


On the 1st week of July we had a speaking exercise where students got to know each other by asking set questions and writing down the answers. They then wrote a paragraph about each person.

Despite having a few malay students temporarily stop classes for the fasting month, we have also welcomed several new students and look forward to working with them.


We will shortly be planning the agenda for August.

Friday, 12 July 2013

Movie Week for July - Ratatouille




Ratatouille is a 2007 movie made by Disney. A rat named Remy has developed quite a taste for food and one day discovers that he has been living in the marvellous city of Paris. Getting lost from his family, he ends up at a famous restaurant where an apprentice chef takes him under his wing, (or I should say, under his hat) and he becomes the architect of the most delicious food in town.

As usual, there are 20 questions prepared to test my students listening and observation skills. This is a fun movie and we are looking forward to watching it with our students next week!


Friday, 5 July 2013

July Agenda


I prepare each month's agenda pretty much at the end of each month and rely solely on inspiration to guide me in what sort of activities to do. There are a few exercises like a popular word game that we do each week, but other than that, it goes by inspiration.

Once in every two months we will watch a movie with our students, complete with questions, to test their listening skills.


Once in every two months we will conduct a specific reading exercise, usually a short story written by myself, including a number of writing, comprehension and grammar exercises, all related to the story.

At least twice a month I will have the students stand up in front of the class and speak about a certain question or topic.



I'm very excited for this month and the exercises we have lined up. Here's what's going on at Horne Learning Services in July:


JULY AGENDA

WEEK 1
  • word game and sentences
  • Speaking exercise
  • Creative writing

WEEK 2
  • word game and sentences
  • A-Z list of words, story writing

WEEK 3
  • movie week

WEEK 4
  • word game and sentences
  • Speaking exercise
  • Creative writing


Looking forward to a great July. There is also a 5th week this month, so there will be no classes from Monday 29th July - Friday 2nd August. (On Saturday 3rd August we will be conducting replacement classes for the two groups on Saturday).




Tuesday, 18 June 2013

When students interview their teacher




Last week I gave my English students the luxury of preparing questions they would like to ask me in a one-on-one personal interview.


This was designed as a means to explore students creativity, writing, reading and speaking skills. It was also intended to give them a confidence boost.


As it turns out, they didn't really need that lift in confidence, as I answered a whole range of questions from silly, to obvious, to hilarious!


Here I'll share with you some of the more notable questions I was asked, and by whom, along with the answers I gave:

To kick off the analysis of the interviews with Mr. Duncan, I want to share this question asked by a young Shuen Lin: 

"Do you like to speak English?"

My response was a "yes" since English is the only language I can indeed speak! I have no option but to like it!

Another similar question with an obvious answer came from Marcus:

"Do you have a toilet in your house?"

I sure do, Marcus. My students, particularly the younger ones, use it often!


Meanwhile, Seng Fong asked me the criminal question, 

"Which daughter is your favourite?"

As you can imagine, this question is impossible to answer other than "I love them both equally."

Kghartie seemed to be giving me a general knowledge test with these two questions:

"Is Pluto a planet?" and 
"Where is the world's driest and hottest deserts located?"

I answered him that Pluto is not a planet, but used to be. Now it's just one of many thousands of similar 'rocks' floating around in that region of space.

Regarding the deserts question, I honestly didn't know, so we did a quick Google search to discover that the Atacama desert in Chile is the world's driest, as it gets just 4 inches of rain in a thousand years while the Lut desert in Iran is the hottest in the world with a recorded temperature of 70.7C!

Mastermind quiz over, here are some more funny questions:


Adam and Brandon wanted to know, (and I'm not sure why!):

"What is your favourite underwear?" and
"What colour is your underwear?"

For those who are interested, I answered 'Superman' and 'white' respectively!

Xiang Qiao: "How many fingers do you have?"
Me: "Is that a trick question? I have 8 fingers, and 2 thumbs!"


Cindy: "What is the thing you like the most about Malaysia?"
Me: "Good weather, good food and good people."

Cassy: "What present did you give to your wife on her birthday this year?"
Me: "An ipad mini."

Muiz: "What is your favourite sport besides football and tennis?" (He knows my sporting preferences well!)
Me: "Formula 1 racing."


Xiang Meng: "Why do you love Man. Utd?"
Me: "They were the first team I ever saw play football way back when I was in primary school. Oh yeah, they are the best too!"

Ser Han: "What is your ambition?"
Me: "To be a famous English teacher."

Jen Yee: "Why did you come here?"
Me: "Because I fell in love with Fidelia!"


Sheng Wey: "What cartoon do you like to watch?"
Me: "Special Agent Oso."

Shafiqah: "Who is the person who inspired you?"
This question made me think. A lot. Eventually I answered "my mum."

Kelly: "What do you think of your Wednesday adult class?" (Kelly belongs in that very class!)
Me: "It's a good class, lots of fun, but they also do all the work I present to them."


Pui Wan: "Where did you get the idea to name your daughters Lauren and Leah?"
Me: "There was a nice girl at my high school called Lauren. She seemed to be different to everyone else and had straight, black hair. I very quietly admired her though I never spoke to her. But I remembered her name. With Leah, we wanted it to begin with "L" like Lauren, and we experimented with many different names. We just liked Leah the best."

To finish off this post, here is a selection of the more amusing questions:

Marilyn: "Why did you marry your wife?"
Let me think . . . you know what? I fell in love with her!

Yu Chen: "How do you prank your hometown friends?"
I mentioned the story of camping with a large group of friends. We went into someone else's tent at 3am and put toothpaste on this boy's eyebrows while he was asleep. It was a killer to get off in the morning!

Irfan: "What are you talking about?"
Well, I had to laugh at that question. I told him I was trying to answer his questions!

Ye Hao: "Do you like Barbie dolls?"
Me: "No." But I probably should have said 'yes' as I play Barbie dolls with Lauren from time to time!



Kelly: "What is your average monthly income?"
Me: "That's confidential!"

Theresa: "Why do you cut your hair?"
Me: "To keep myself cool, and light, and it's easier to maintain."

Sook Chia: "How many girlfriends did you have in college?"
This answer actually included 2 girlfriends in primary school and 3 in secondary school (though two of them lasted no longer than a couple of weeks). So I answered '5, and not at the same time!'



So that wraps up my students interviews. If you don't see your name or your child's name in this post, it probably means you or your child asked me very good and proper interview questions. Not too crazy, not too funny, not too obvious. But hey, I enjoyed answering every single one of them!

Congratulations to my students for successfully participating in a very good exercise!

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Interviewing Mr. Duncan!

This week I'm putting the students in my position. They will prepare 12 questions they would like to ask me and then individually they will interview me based on their questions. I will answer their questions just once, in which time they will be expected to make some notes on my answers.

It's great to put them in charge and see how they handle it. Their speaking, listening and writing skills will be put to the test, as well as receiving a confidence boost!

I'm excited to see what sort of questions they come up with for me :)


Tuesday, 30 April 2013

Z is for Zapata



(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

We'd love your support by 'like'-ing us on facebook. Just click here: 
HLS English Classes Kuantan




A 'zapata' is a flowing, drooping moustache. I wonder if the word came from Emiliano Zapata (pictured below), a Mexican who led a revolt in the early 1900s.






What other words could be named after famous people?

Monday, 29 April 2013

Y is for Year



(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

We'd love your support by 'like'-ing us on facebook. Just click here: 
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A basic mistake some of my students make is with the word 'year.' A typical wrong sentence is as follows:

"I was born in year 2006."



The correct sentence simply removes the word 'year':

"I was born in 2006."




The A-Z challenge is almost finished. How are you doing? Did you achieve your goals? How many blogs did you manage to visit?

Saturday, 27 April 2013

X is for Xenodocheionology


(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

We'd love your support by 'like'-ing us on facebook. Just click here: 
HLS English Classes Kuantan



There is only one 'X' word that lists as a favourite, and that is 'xenodocheionology' - the love of hotels.

What a great word! I do love hotels. We spend a night at a hotel as often as we can. I love being served once in a while, enjoying the quality of the hotel, and being away from the usual routines of home for a day or two.

Our good friend and Hotel Manager at Hotel Majestic KL, Wayne Lee, with VIP co-ordinator, Anna


Are you a hotel lover?

Friday, 26 April 2013

W is for Write sentences

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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Key Point #2 is "Write sentences" and this follows on from yesterday's post about VOCABULARY.

The best way to learn a new word is to use that word in a sentence. Truly building vocabulary doesn't only include writing down a word and its meaning. It also entails USING that word by writing example sentences and then attempting to use it in your daily life.



Do you write sentences? How do you USE the new words you have learned?

Thursday, 25 April 2013

V is for Vocabulary

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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Vocabulary is power. Vocabulary combined with grammar is FORCE.

Building your vocabulary is an important part of mastering English. There are literally hundreds of thousands of words in the English language.

Learning new words can be fun. It's like adding salt to food - it gives your English more flavour, more taste, more enjoyment.



How do you expand your vocabulary?

Wednesday, 24 April 2013

U is for Uvula


(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

We'd love your support by 'like'-ing us on facebook. Just click here: 
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U is for uvula. What in the world is 'uvula'??? Here it is:


As you can see, the uvula is that piece of flesh that hangs down in the back of the mouth. You've probably seen it in cartoons where someone yells as loud as possible and their uvula starts swaying from side to side.



Can you make a cool sentence with 'uvula'?




Tuesday, 23 April 2013

T is for Think in English

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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Key Point #1 is "Think in English."

I have found through teaching English in Malaysia for 7 years that it is much more effective to train students to 'think in English' rather than having them thinking and speaking in another language and then translating it to English.

I demand all of my students regardless of age or English proficiency, to speak in English during our classes. It's difficult at first but it really trains them to 'think in English.'

Think in Chinese, Speak in Chinese
Think in English, Speak in English



Has anybody else come across such translation problems between languages?

Monday, 22 April 2013

S is for Scrotum

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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"Scrotum" is one of my all-time favourite words. I just love the letters, the way it sounds, and what it describes. Some people may find this funny, some may be slightly embarrassed, but honestly, I don't know of 7 other letters put together more beautifully or sounding as superb as 'scrotum.'


Scrotum - "the external pouch of skin enclosing the testes in most mammals."


The scrotum is part of the male reproductive system and is like a bag which contains the testicles. It is situated outside the male body at a lower temperature, thereby promoting a more suitable environment for sperm to be produced and available.



Do you have any favourite words?

Saturday, 20 April 2013

R is for Roger Federer

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

We'd love your support by 'like'-ing us on facebook. Just click here: 
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We are huge Roger Federer fans. There is something special and perfect about the way he plays tennis.

Roger Federer speaks fluently in 4 languages: his native Swiss German, German, English and French. Being so multilingual (ability to speak in more than one language) is a great advantage for him and endears him to journalists and reporters all around the world.


And we've not even spoke about his tennis achievements yet!




How many languages do you speak?





Friday, 19 April 2013

Q is for Quietude

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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Quietude (noun) means "quietness" and is something I enjoy. Finding time to just be quiet in today's busy world is difficult, but very rewarding.



How do you find time for quietude?

Thursday, 18 April 2013

P is for Plural (s)

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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What would the English language be without the letter "S"? It would be very singular!

And so we come to the topic of 'plurals', which a number of my students enjoy forgetting. Here are some typical sentences:

"I have two hand."

"She has three dog."

"There are many picture on the wall."


I always ask my students: "What's wrong with the letter 'S'?" and "Why don't you like the letter 'S'?" It takes many such lessons for this simple rule to stick.




What is the most difficult part of English to teach/grasp?


Wednesday, 17 April 2013

O is for Oh my word!

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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I occasionally say "Oh my word" when I've told a student a number of times how to do something, and they still didn't do it right! I have to be more patient, I know. I am slowing down my speech and simplifying things to the extent that 'broken English' is the only way to get through to some students. Proper English just will not work if their standard is very low :/

However, the phrase "Oh my word" shows that I'm a true logophile - "a lover of words." Words are great, they carry power. I often read the dictionary, scribble down new words and feverishly write sentences with them. I have piles of papers of new words in a folder. 

It is fascinating to learn new words!



What are your favourite words?

Tuesday, 16 April 2013

N is for Nice, and good . . .

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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Being 'nice' and 'good' is great, but the words in themselves in regards to using the English language, are horrible!

I have read these words way too many times. Having a broad vocabulary means we can make these words permanently redundant!

There are so many other words that can be used instead of 'nice' and 'good' ie. pleasant, outstanding, excellent, satisfactory, amazing, great, tremendous, fabulous, fantastic, beautiful, dazzling, sweet. The list can go on and on . . .




Which words do you hate to hear over and over again?

Monday, 15 April 2013

M is for Make an effort!

(During the month of April we are participating in an A-Z challenge hosted by Arlee)

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I love nothing better than to see a student join my class who has a deep desire to learn, improve and be committed to the lessons. They arrive on time, come prepared, listen attentively, contribute to the lesson and have plenty of questions to ask me.

Our key point #5 states that a 'Balanced Effort' is required to increase proficiency in the English language. That involves reading, writing, listening and speaking. We weave all 4 elements into our English classes.



Which element of English do you struggle the most with? Which do you enjoy the most?