My Belief in Reflection for Growth
I am a great believer in reflection and communication. This has led me indirectly to my interest in languages from an early age and as an English teacher I find that teaching, and then reflecting on the process, learning from my learners as they learn from each other as well as from me and from the many available resources that we work with, is one way to develop professionally. This blog is the natural evolution of the reflection journals that I used to write for myself, but with the added plus, that I can now share my thoughts with you, and I hope that you will want to share your thoughts and comments with me. In this way the blog is a springboard for growth, so why don’t you dive in and join me?
My Origins and story
Although I am originally from Yorkshire, UK, I have lived in Germany and Spain and I currently live in Verona in the north of Italy. Travelling around Europe and living in different places has made me realise that no matter what cultural differences there are between us, we are all very similar underneath and having a lingua franca gives us the chance to work and and build our futures together. I work mainly at the university of Verona, where I teach general English and ESL, although I do freelance work as well. I am involved in training, mainly INSET and the Celta, testing for my own university and spent many years as a team leader for CambridgeESOL oral exams.
I am very interested in Corpus Linguistics and language as discourse and, of course, elearning which, I can safely say, over the past few years has transformed the way I work. How has it done this? Well, Web 2.0 has opened up the way to sharing ideas and publishing thoughts and content to an unprecedented extent. My open platforms have provided a miraculous space where learners can work in English to choose their own content and their own tools to discuss and develop their ideas independently.. .All, of course, in English, which is their real lingua franca!
A Few More Links
Below are links to four videos I recently published on YouTube providing an overview of my elearning work in the past ten years:
Part One: an introduction and background to my work
Part Two: How are VLEs being used?
Part Three: Elearning at the moment in the University of Verona
Part Four: A more detailed look at some of the teaching we are doing
So enough about me, now a few words about English Learning in Our World
Welcome to this new PLN. PLN is a term I only came across myself quite recently and it means Personal Learning Network. It is, I think , a great idea as it refers to a whole network of people and sites across the Internet that can help us to keep intouch and develop.
This space is designed to:
1. Provide links and information for English Learners.
Firstly if you are a learner you can follow the link above and go to my distance learning site. This is often used as part of a blended learning programme but many of the activities can be used independently. You can navigate this site simply by choosing your level or interest on the page menu on the lefthand side.
2. You can also follow me and my students in our Facebook closed group if you want to follow us and join in the discussions.
Follow the link below: