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Often overlooked aspects of lesson obs in EFL. And hamsters
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
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Location: On a Short Leash

PostPosted: Sat Oct 27, 2012 6:12 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Quote:
Wonder what he's dreaming of....http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1C0HI_LyAho&feature=endscreen&NR=1


Sasha, I actually expect those might be death throes. Hamsters are prey animals, after all, and it would be a very ill hamster indeed who'd snooze away on his side in the open without any sort of cover whatsoever. I think there's likely a VERY dark story behind that clip....
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fluffyhamster



Joined: 13 Mar 2005
Posts: 2731
Location: UK > China > Japan > UK again

PostPosted: Sat Oct 27, 2012 6:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Maybe he's just playing dead? (Edit: or playing hibernating piano LOL). Luring the over-confident predators closer, closer... . (The last thing they'll see is something just like my avatar Very Happy ).
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spiral78



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PostPosted: Sat Oct 27, 2012 7:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

They clearly snatched that hamster from the jaws of a fierce terrier and have simply laid him on the white tablecloth as a gesture of respect for his final moments.

Hmmm, how to link THIS to the actual topic of the thread....I don't normally teach (or engage in) creative writing tasks, observed or not...
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:14 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Schnauzers are noted for their hamster-hunting prowess, I believe...
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

spiral78 wrote:
Quote:
Wonder what he's dreaming of....http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1C0HI_LyAho&feature=endscreen&NR=1


Sasha, I actually expect those might be death throes. Hamsters are prey animals, after all, and it would be a very ill hamster indeed who'd snooze away on his side in the open without any sort of cover whatsoever. I think there's likely a VERY dark story behind that clip....


Actually, I think that the poor little critter is just trying to get some shut-eye before he goes into school the next day for his Delta lesson observation and so is going through his plan in his sleep. That is indeed a lesser known aspect of lesson observations: their nocturnal effect on hamsters : )
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Sat Oct 27, 2012 8:25 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

spiral78 wrote:


Hmmm, how to link THIS to the actual topic of the thread....I don't normally teach (or engage in) creative writing tasks, observed or not...


Dunno what you mean there, Spiral. Perfectly in keeping with the topic and thread title... Hic!

Very Happy
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spiral78



Joined: 05 Apr 2004
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 28, 2012 7:36 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wow, the thread-title fairy's been at work!

Maybe the hamster is in post-observation death throes, having been excoriated for not toeing the CELTA party line, and having applied some undefined conversation-chain approach...
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Sun Oct 28, 2012 7:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I think he just talked too much. In the lesson and outside. That's a big no-no. Loose lips sink hamsters, as they say over the Urals.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ciXzCffoR1w
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fluffyhamster



Joined: 13 Mar 2005
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 12:34 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Move along, move along. Nothing to see here but a half-dead hamster exhausted from searching for better methods.

Re. "Hamstertanic":
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=og1fQyN1mmg
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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Location: Moskva, The Workers' Paradise

PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 5:22 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Half-blind hamster, did you say? Look right under your nose, man! Plenty of solid methodology strewn about the place. Doesn't come with instant treats, though. Which I know is what hamsters and lab rats require most when they solve laboratory puzzles. Perhaps that is the underlying issue? Not cheesy enough? : )

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HwR6HOe8P3Y
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 5:23 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"Hey teacher! We don't need no methodology!"

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fyHJxZB3pMs&feature=related

Good treats here : )
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teacheratlarge



Joined: 17 Nov 2011
Posts: 181
Location: Japan

PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 7:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Sashadroogie wrote:
"Short of opening their own school or doing privates all the time, there usually isn't much that teachers can do about choice of textbook, exam, method etc. So they could be forgiven a little moaning about such things."

Strongly disagree here. There is plenty that a teacher can do - if they know how. .... Knowing how to exploit a course book, even a crappy one, is a step in the right direction. Not depending on any one method is another. Leaving a school where none of the above is practicable is rarely impossible.

So we both believe that improvement is possible. However, I have given concrete examples of how this may be brought about. A Celta course, which you do not care for, I know, is a good start. A Delta or MA is another follow-on option. Classroom observation helps massively too, for many reasons, including some of the reasons outlined on the first page. Reading a few books like Harmer's or Scrivener's can't do anything but a world of good to those who are struggling. These are my ideas. Disagree if you insist, but please, please show us what you propose as an alternative. So far we've been given nothing. Nothing at all. I suspect that the reason for this is the obvious one...


This makes sense. I think that Fluffy has given us something, but he certainly hasn't been as explicit as Sasha has in examples posed to help improve our teaching.

I still disagree as to textbooks for a new reason; why should a teacher have to exploit a crappy book; why be forced to use it at all if it's that bad (which some of the texts are)?

In my own case, the TEFL course I did in Canada came after I had already gained some experience, so for me, it was not as beneficial as it might have been had I been a newbie, as many students in the course were. But for those new teachers, it was a least a foundation to try and build from (though, of course if you didn't like the foundation Rolling Eyes ..., it at least maybe got you thinking more about what reasons you have to support what you do or try to do in the classroom).
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 7:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

What has Fluffy given us, exactly? I must have missed that detail due to the presence of a high number of distractingly cute videos...
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Sashadroogie



Joined: 17 Apr 2007
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 8:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

"I still disagree as to textbooks for a new reason; why should a teacher have to exploit a crappy book; why be forced to use it at all if it's that bad (which some of the texts are)? "

For the same reason that teachers have to deal with poorly motivated learners, broken equipment, illogical management, bad weather etc. There is not always a lot one can do to change it, so developing ways of dealing with it is the only realistic solution. Unless we consider just whining a solution. I don't.
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artemisia



Joined: 04 Nov 2008
Posts: 867
Location: the world

PostPosted: Mon Oct 29, 2012 10:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fluffy talked about the pair relationship as being the ideal language learning situation for students who had studied the basics of language on their own first.

ELT involves so many different situations that it is risky to make generalisations. However, as far as I can see, the majority of most teaching situations for most English language teachers would involve dealing with groups of learners, at least at some point or another. I doubt the majority of those learners would be solely self-taught before turning up in your classroom, but they almost certainly would have had some experience of English learning prior (unless they really are absolute beginners). Iíve had a lot of one to one situations, but most of my experience has been with groups.

For those who havenít seen it:

Jeremy Harmer at the International House Conference 2012
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JJWT0oaX9V0&feature=related

A very interesting plenary talk on conversation-driven language teaching, but also in relation to the use of course books since that topic's come up. The intro (another person first) is a bit slow, but itís worth hanging in there.
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