Articles and ideas

Many of these Articles have appeared in a variety of English Language Teaching publications and here we continue to write for teachers and colleagues in the field of ELT.

Short and Practical Pronunciation Teaching Ideas

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Publication: 
IATEFL Pronunciation SIG newsletter 'Speak Out'
Articles - hancockmcdonald.com/ideas

These are a series of practical teaching ideas which I have been contibuting to the IATEFL Pron Sig magazine 'Speak Out'. They cover a range of different pronunciation issues:
1. Contrastive stress
2. The final -s suffix - plurals, present simple, possessives
3. Consonant sounds /t/ and /d/ at the ends of words
4. Dividing text into tone units

Teaching Writing to School Children

Publication: 
IATEFL young learners sig journal CATS, Spring 2000
Articles - hancockmcdonald.com/ideas

Writing has a bad reputation in many schools, for both teachers and students. For the teacher, it means marking a pile of compositions and they are almost always worse than expected. For many students, writing is a boring chore and an “opportunity” to make a lot of mistakes.However, we believe that writing can be a very interesting and involving activity for students of English.

Politeness is not just please and thank you

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Publication: 
English Teaching Professional 2010, issue 70
Articles - hancockmcdonald.com/ideas

'Say please!', children are often told, after saying something like 'Give me a biscuit'. If they ask why, they may receive the explanation, 'Because it's polite'. We English teachers sometimes do the same.

Motivation: the inside story

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Publication: 
Procedia Social and Behavioural Sciences 3 (2010) 24-27
Articles - hancockmcdonald.com/ideas

In this article, we will look at the difference between extrinsic and intrinsic motivation, and why extrinsic motivation alone is not satisfactory for learning in the long run. It is suggested that although students may embark on learning for extrinsic reasons, a more intrinsic motivation can be developed in the classroom.

Keeping the vision alive: Maintaining motivation and promoting effective learning

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Publication: 
Procedia - Social and Behavioral Sciences, Volume 3, 2010, pages 190-193

In this article, I look at several techniques and approaches we could use to help learners perceive the value of general classroom activities and to experience success in the communicative tasks we ask them to do. When used together, these techniques and approaches can generate, maintain and protect motivation.

Pronunciation Material as Language Play

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Publication: 
IATEFL Pronunciation SIG newsletter Speak Out, Dec 2006

This article consists of two parts. In the first part, I will argue that the rejection of certain pronunciation materials on the grounds that they are not communicative may be unjustified. In this argument, I will make use of the concept of language play.

Sounds with rhyme and reason

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Publication: 
EL Gazette, issue 281, June 2003

There's so much more to teaching pronunciation than drilling and the phonetic alphabet. A few simple exercises can open your students' senses to the rhythms and patterns of speech.

The European Language Portfolio: A Frame for Learning 1

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Publication: 
ETp November, 2004, Issue 35
Articles - hancockmcdonald.com/ideas

In 2004, after giving a presentation on the Eurpopean Language Portfolio (ELP) at the TESOL-Spain National Convention, I was invitied to write a series of articles for English Teaching professional (ETp) http://www.etprofessional.com.

The European Language Portfolio: A Frame for Learning 2

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Publication: 
ETp January, 2005, Issue 36
Articles - hancockmcdonald.com/ideas

The second article on the Eurpoean Laguage Portfolio (ELP) describes how the Dossier is intended to be used. I also refer to my own teaching experiences about 30 years ago, when I was inadvertently using a kind of ELP Dossier with a group of rather educationally jaded secondary school kids.

The European Language Portfolio: A Frame for Learning 3

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Publication: 
ETp March, 2005, Issue 37
Articles - hancockmcdonald.com/ideas

This last article on the Eurpoean Language Portfolio (ELP) describes how the Passport draws on records and work referenced and stored in the Biography and Dossier. It represents a comprehensive summary of an individual's learning achievement in foreign languages.

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