CELTA Week 4, evening 7

Evening 7 (Tues 2012-01-31)

1. Intro to Language Analysis

Started off with a warmer: Last year’s CELTA students had left some words of wisdom. Individually, we selected a favourite tip from four choices. In pairs, we discussed why we’d chosen what we’d chosen. Then a small discussion as a group.

I had already read them all because they’re up on the classroom wall. The one that says there’s lots of paperwork ain’t kidding! Lots! It’s very hard to know how to file all this stuff to make it accessible for the future – if indeed we ever look at it again.

Next, 45 mins of language analysis, starting with “I’ve lived in Oxford for 10 years”. I’m not sure the difference between Function and Appropriacy – this handout was given at the end and I didn’t spot the identical definitions.

Then a Powerpoint presentation introducing the concepts of language analysis. Afterwards, we gave a rough assessment of our own grammar grade and then each was paired with a stronger partner for analysis of seven sentences. I’m not so good at this; I guess practice will make perfect but I reckon this’ll be a long process.

2. Lesson Preparation

30 mins of discussing lesson plans for Thursday’s teaching practice but, as I won’t be teaching, I wasn’t really involved. I tried to listen over shoulders but didn’t learn a lot.

Then a quick break.

3. Receptive Skills and Written Assignment

Too much to cover, everything takes longer than expected, everything gets rushed.

50 mins with the other tutor. It started badly. We had to refer back to homework that we’d done two weeks previously. I had done it, we hadn’t mentioned it in subsequent lessons, so I’d all but forgotten about it. I couldn’t even remember IF I’d done it, let alone what I’d written! It put me in a bad mood. It was about writing a lesson plan for developing student reading skills on the theme of “My Favourite Room.” I had to re-read what I’d written. Meanwhile the others in my group seemed to recall instantly and were discussing how they’d approach it. We ran out of time before I could have any input.

Then watching a twenty-minute (title-less) video about a classroom situation where the (nameless) teacher gave instruction to a class (how many? what level?) about the comedian, Lenny Henry, and his favourite things. We considered the stages, role of teacher, and instructions given. This we discussed briefly afterwards and, at the end, were given a copy of the text and lesson plan. Looking at it now, that’ll actually be useful as a model.

And Finally… the Written Assignment, due in three weeks, but that includes one week’s holiday so next week’s the only opportunity to discuss it again with this tutor. Five handouts. FIVE! Instructions, the reading text to be analysed (“How to have the perfect interview…”), copies of chapters 14 & 15 of an old edition of Harmer’s “The Practice of English language Teaching”, and chapter 3 of Eddie Williams’ “Reading in The Language Classroom, 1996”. Couldn’t these have just been placed somewhere on the web to save trees? Anyway, here are the instructions and the text:


Part 1 is to be more essay-like, Part 2 more lesson-plan-like. I’m not sure if the 1000 words is for both parts or whether it includes the quotations and references… I need to clarify.

Overall, another blur of a lesson. I feel I’m being left behind.



  1. Chris

    If there was ever a story of someone who needs Evernote, it’s you 🙂

    You should really try it out, I’ve only used their Mac and iPhone apps, but the windows one should be just as good!

    You can create a notebook (I have one per thing I’m working towards) and then input notes to that book. Each note is pretty powerful, not just text but URLs, tables, interactive check boxes for todo lists etc, and you can attach files too. But by far the most useful feature is the ability to add photos to notes (handy, I normally take them and upload straight from my iphone) but, any text in the photos also becomes fully searchable, and the OCR is pretty good too!

    If you have a scanner, it might take a while, but means all those bits of paper are super quick to find with a search! And a note per-homework might be a plan 😉

    And no, I am not employed or have shares in Evernote!!

    • clivesir

      That’s interesting, Chris, thanks! I like the idea that the photos are searchable/OCR-able. I don’t have a scanner but perhaps I can photograph some of this stuff and upload. Hmmm… perhaps I need a smartphone 🙂

      Some of my work falls into multiple categories – makes it difficult to paper file, but I could tag it electronically in Evernote and use search…. I’m warming to this idea 🙂

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