What do flight attendants and English teachers have in common?

They both get stuck even though they think they’ll be on the go. Every now and then, a friend of a friend contacts me: “My girlfriend and I want to travel and teach English!” “I get it,” I say. “That is exactly why I came abroad, too.”  The reality, dear reader, as I’m sure you’re well aware, is often quite …

Studying for Delta Module 1

On Wednesday I paid for my Delta Module 1 exam, so it means that I am officially committed to getting hand cramps on June 4th. I came home and made a pretty intense study schedule for myself. You can click to enlarge the image here. If I have learned anything in the last four years of watching TOEFL students accomplish …

Meet Rookie J — an unlikely future TOEFL teacher

She spends weeks packing, but nevertheless arrives in Turkey with things she will quickly abandon (the Rosetta Stone for Turkish; a foreign haircut; a suitcase full of the wrong clothes).  She doesn’t yet know that her intangibles are infinitely more valuable (a little bit of CELTA experience; unbridled enthusiasm; the conviction that this job in Turkey — her first opportunity …

Paper is the Enemy of Word — or why you should publish digitally

If you’re an author and wondering how to publish your ESL, English or exam prep material, I urge you to stay away from the traditional publishing industry.  Why? Because they’ll limit the size of your book, affect your vision and eventually block your material from reaching the hands of the very students you want to help — all of which limits …

Experimental Teaching

I’ve been having dreams lately. I say this because I don’t usually remember them. In fact, it’s been so many years that I forgot that dreams are peppered with little bits of reality. My Delta class is wriggling into my nocturnal realm, as well. In the second session of module 1, we gave little presentations of a variety of alternative …

Twas the night before DELTA

Tomorrow is the first day of DELTA, Module 1. I have to admit that between my students’ needs and my own expanding business plans of TOEFL teacher training and laying the foundation to build an online school, I haven’t devoted much time to the pre-course reading task. I just now took a look at it. Phrases like “dictagloss,” “interlanguage” and …

Is teaching TOEFL satisfying?

“I know you’re busy, but I wondered if you’re fulfilled…” I saw the Skype chat message from a teacher I’ve been training as I juggled my call with the credit card processor and my website’s shopping cart tech support. In the middle of the headache and as I pressed down feelings of hold-music-induced stress, I was grateful that she asked …