English Banana.com ESL Blog

The latest free material and news from English Banana.com


New FREE Online Course for English Teachers – Starting Next Monday!

Free Teacher Training Course - Now Enrolling!

From next Monday 4th November 2013 Matt Purland will be running a free on-going teacher training course for teachers of English and ESL. Enrolment is now open so you can sign up from today! You can get all of the details here:

http://www.wiziq.com/course/36615-free-teacher-training-course-for-english-teachers

Title: Free Teacher Training Course for English Teachers

Goal: Learn how to teach English without a course book

Live classes: Mondays at 8.15pm CET & Thursdays at 10am CET

Main Benefits:

* FREE live classes twice a week

* Learn with an experienced English teacher and teacher trainer

* Professional development certificate when you attend 10 live classes

* Learn techniques that will help your students be more productive

* FREE access to recordings and group material (pdf, ppt, doc)

This is a course for English teachers; if you are studying to become a teacher, you are also welcome. This course is for teachers who want to learn and discuss ways of teaching English without formal material, e.g. a course book or handouts.

This course is on-going. You don’t need to attend every class – attend when you can; if you attend 10 live classes you will receive a FREE professional development certificate.

This course is based on You Are The Course Book Method. You can find out more about it and download the FREE material here: http://englishbanana.com/resources/free-books/teacher-training/

Hope to see you there!


100+ English Language Teachers Attended My Seminar at Language Show Live 2013

It was fantastic to be greeted by over a hundred English language teachers at my seminar at Language Show Live last weekend! They attended my seminar at Olympia, London, on how to teach English without a course book, and it was great to see so many people who were interested in trying something new in the classroom – rather than just the usual gap-fills, multiple-choice questions, and reading comprehensions provided by the usual uninspiring ELT course books.

Waiting to do my seminar at Language Show Live 2013. A Penguin Classic, a bottle of still water, and a quiet corner away from it all...!

Waiting to do my seminar at Language Show Live 2013. A Penguin Classic, a bottle of still water, and a quiet corner away from it all…!

You can download the PowerPoint presentation that we discussed here.

In the video below I’m discussing Slide 18 and complaining about how with the course book, the writer of the course book gets to be creative, while students are reduced to completing cloze activities or reading in silence. With YATCB Method students get to experience the buzz of creativity; they are able to have ideas and work on them with their partner or group.

Language Show Live 2013 (1)

Language Show Live 2013 (1)

At the end of the seminar there were many questions from the audience. We discussed using this method within a syllabus and with ILPs; assessment, and how to persuade Directors of Studies to let you deviate from doing the book. This seemed to be the most common problem for the teachers I encountered there. They said that they would like to be more free in what they do in class, but don’t have time to let their students be creative after completing the set course book pages – which they “have to” do. Frustrating! It was great to chat to so many of you face to face after the event. I felt encouraged that there are many teachers who, like me, desire a more creative and productive approach to teaching English. One delegate, Joanna Dudzinska, asked me for the origin of the name “English Banana” and then promptly presented me with a pair of fresh bananas that I could take home! Thanks, Joanna. You can see pictures and read her side of the story in her blog here. She commented:

“The highlight of today was The Language Show at Olympia in Kensington. It was the third and last day of the annual event related to languages: teaching, learning, interpreting, translating and also travelling!

“A friend had told me about the presentation for EFL teachers. It had an interesting title: YOU ARE YOUR OWN COURSEBOOK. I agree with Matt, the speaker. Coursebooks are boring and they do not allow free thinking often suppressing  creativity. I could elaborate more on that particular topic, but there is no time… However, I shall definitely be going back to Matt’s website…”

Language Show Live 2013 (2)

Language Show Live 2013 (2)

 
Language Show Live 2013 (3)

Language Show Live 2013 (3)

My heartfelt thanks go to Claire Shilling and the wonderful team who organised Language Show Live 2013, as well as the army of people who ensured that the event ran so well. I really enjoyed taking part – thanks for having me!

If you would like me to speak about You Are The Course Book Method at your organisation, or run a training session, please do get in touch!


Teacher Training with Russian Teachers in Poland!

We were lucky enough to host a fantastic group of teachers from Saratov University recently at our school – Study English in Ostroda. They joined us for five nights for one of our language holidays.

The visit was a great success with all of the teachers saying that they enjoyed it and learned many new techniques that they could take back to their university – and private – students in Russia.

The group leader Tatiana M. commented:

“The course provided the opportunity for the students to be active and creative at the classes, work together with other students and speak English while performing the tasks. The course integrated all of the aspects of language learning (speaking, reading, pronunciation, grammar, writing and listening) and actively involved students into the learning process. The organisation of the course (flexible schedule, the timing, course materials and accommodation) were arranged and provided on a high level. New things I learned:

  • organising the learning process without a textbook
  • a new approach to teaching phonetics 
  • reiterating the most important language points at every lesson
  • a captivating and enjoyable way of working with newspaper articles”

Here is a picture of the group hard at work:

Teachers from Saratov University, Russia

…and at play, enjoying a barbecue with some of our local students:

Polish hospitality - a good old fashioned grill!

We even got an article in the local paper!

Article in Nasz Glos newspaper in Ostroda

If you would like to join us for a language holiday – to improve your English language skills, or to brush up on your teaching practice – you are more than welcome to join us! Please click here to find out more about our offer.


FREE English Banana Resource App is now available from Amazon Appstore!

You can now get our fantastic FREE English Banana Resource App from Amazon Appstore! Click the link below to go there now:

http://www.amazon.com/English-Banana-Resource-App/dp/B00CAX9ZDS

Get it now for your Amazon device!

Get it now from Amazon!

 


English Banana.com Teachers Map has been Updated!

What do Peru, Bangladesh, Russia, Mexico, Kashmir, and Hartlepool have in common? They are all places where English teachers are busily working on projects using English Banana.com material, having first applied for a free certificate of authorisation.

On the map below each pin represents a place where such a project is taking place:

English Banana.com Teachers Map

English Banana.com Teachers Map

 

You can find out more about each one on our amazing interactive map! Please click below to go there now:

https://maps.google.co.uk/maps/ms?msa=0&ie=UTF8&msid=107553550370586956076.00046980ea6188984f567&ll=43.068888,74.53125&spn=179.132375,360&z=0&source=embed

And click here to find out more about our free licences:

http://englishbanana.com/copying-licence.html

 


NEW FREE BOOK! You Are The Course Book 2 – In Practice (480 pages)


FREE English Vocabulary and Pronunciation Workout! (Video of online lesson)

This is a recording of a free class I taught on WizIQ.com on 28.02.13: http://www.wiziq.com/online-class/1140564-free-english-vocabulary-and-pronunciation-workout You can download the free material that we used here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/127589616/Auto-Mode-3-Example

 


Matt Purland is teaching a new FREE 8-week course with Myschoolo.com

Last Friday saw the first class in a new free 8-week English course taught by Matt Purland in conjunction with Myschoolo.com. You can find out more details and sign up for this free course here:

http://myschoolo.com/elearning/matt-purland-1/

In the meantime, why not enjoy the video recording of the first class, which was on the topic of The Environment (Studying Language):


FREE English Class on the topic of “Clothes”! (VIDEO)

You are welcome to join us for this FREE pre-intermediate English language class on the topic of “Clothes”. It was a pleasure to teach this class last night in partnership with MySchoolo.com


Find out who is using English Banana.com materials around the world!

English Banana.com – Certificates of Authorisation Map

We’ve just added SEVEN more entries to our map of people who have applied for English Banana.com Certificates of Authorisation. Find out how they are using English Banana.com materials by browsing the special map here:

English Banana.com – Certificates of Authorisation

You can find out more about using our Free Copying Licence and Free Licence to Run Courses here.


Please Join My Next Free Class: Practise Connected Speech in English – Final Consonant Linking

http://www.wiziq.com/online-class/971566-practise-connected-speech-in-english-final-consonant-linking

About the Class

We’re going to spend a whole lesson looking at final consonant linking in cv connections in English speech. For example, in the sentence “I like English” there is one example of final consonant linking: “like English” becomes Lai King glish

If you are interested in this kind of thing, you will be sure to enjoy this lesson! Make sure you have your microphone plugged in, so that you can speak during the class.

This class will be relaxed and fun, so please come and join us if you would like to improve your speaking and listening skills in a friendly class.

See you there! 😉


More Press Coverage of English Banana Trust – and a Video from the Summer School

Here is a roundup of recent stories about English Banana Trust from the newspapers:

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/holt_based_charity_english_banana_trust_celebrates_the_success_of_its_first_summer_school_1_1495988

http://www.northnorfolknews.co.uk/news/holt_based_charity_english_banana_trust_celebrates_the_success_of_its_first_summer_school_1_1495988

http://www.edp24.co.uk/news/jazz_concert_at_the_auden_theatre_in_holt_to_raise_money_for_the_charity_english_banana_trust_1_1498223

And here’s a short video taken by one of the participants in the recent summer school. It shows us letting our hair down at a social evening at the end of the course. We had a lot of fun! In this activity different teams had been challenged to write lyrics about the summer school to the tune of ‘Let it Be’ by The Beatles. This team didn’t win, but they still really enjoyed performing for us!

 


The First English Banana Trust Summer School was a Great Success!

Last week the first English Banana Trust Summer School was held at Greshams School in Holt, Norfolk. The focus was on teacher training and how to teach without a course book, and we were pleased to welcome four English language teachers from Russia, Hungary, and Serbia. Course tutor Matt Purland focused on training the teachers to teach without using a course book, based on methods from his recent manual You Are The Course Book. The teachers thoroughly enjoyed the week, which was sponsored by English Banana Trust. Apart from five hours of lessons per day – and plenty of homework! – the participants were able to enjoy a diverse number of outings ranging from a visit to the famous seal colony at Blakeney Point, a guided tour of Norwich with an experienced historian, and several delightful shared meals and get-togethers with trustees and friends of the Trust.

Here are a few comments from some of the participants at the end of the course:

‘I feel I’ve gained enough confidence to teach without materials. I also feel that my creativity has been exposed to the higher level and that’s really good and exciting.’ – Marija

‘I feel the passion to continue my self-education in this area which I consider to be really innovative…’ – Nadia

Course tutor Matt commented: ‘I would like to thank the Trust for all their hard work and dedication in staging the summer school this year. We have all really gained a lot out of it. It was wonderful to watch our teachers in action and to see them grow in confidence and be able to teach their own lessons without a course book – or any printed material.’

If you would like to get involved with next year’s EBT Summer School – as either a participant or a tutor – please contact English Banana Trust at: ebtrust@englishbanana.com

Or if you would like to book Matt to run a similar week-long training course at your educational establishment, please do get in touch at: info@englishbanana.com

Here are some photos of the participants hard at work in the classroom, and (in bottom picture) with tutor Matt after the final session of the course:


1,800+ English Banana.com Worksheets Added to TES.co.uk Resource Website!

TES.co.uk

TES.co.uk

We’re thankful to the team at TES.co.uk – a site billed as “the largest network of teachers in the world” – who have recently added 1,873 English Banana worksheets to their massive free database of resources for teachers.

It’s great news for English Banana.com, because it means that our resources can now be shared with a much wider audience! The TES website has over 2 million registered users worldwide. Our resources were added about a month ago, and they have already generated an incredible 25,000+ page views!

You can find the English Banana resources page on tes.co.uk here:

http://www.tes.co.uk/MyPublicProfile.aspx?uc=2319730&event=21

You can also find many other great teacher resources on their site – all free to access and download!

Aimée Fagan from tes.co.uk said: “We’re delighted to have the materials on TES! We have also shared them in our new US website www.sharemylesson.com as there is a huge demand for ELL (English Language Learner) material like this in the US too.”

You can find the English Banana page on their US website here:

http://www.sharemylesson.com/MyPublicProfile.aspx?uc=2319730&event=21

It was made possible thanks to our Free Copying Licence, which allows anybody to share and use English Banana.com material – including uploading and adding it to another website. You can find out more about our free licences here:

http://www.englishbanana.com/copying-licence.html


More Photos from our Big Sky Fundraising Event on 31st March 2012

Official events photography courtesy Photographers’ Gallery, Holt, Norfolk. Used with kind permission.

Sian Croose & Big Sky

Hugh Lupton - Storyteller

Hugh Lupton - Storyteller

Big Sky Choir - Warming Up

Big Sky Choir - Warming Up

Big Sky Choir - Warming Up

Big Sky Choir - Warming Up

Hugh Lupton - Backstage

Hugh Lupton - Backstage

Alan Childs, Trustee of English Banana Trust, and Matt Purland

Alan Childs, Trustee of English Banana Trust, and Matt Purland

Glyn Purland, Chair of English Banana Trust

Glyn Purland, Chair of English Banana Trust

 


Thanks to Everybody who Made our Fundraising Concert such a Big Success!

Our “Big Sky” fundraising event went really well on Saturday night. Thanks to everybody who took part, including the performers Big Sky Choir, storyteller Hugh Lupton, and wildlife photographer David Tipling. Thanks as well to the hard-working team of people who made it possible, including the English Banana Trustees, other volunteers, and the professional, kind, and helpful staff at Cathedral.

A packed crowd gathered in the new Hostry centre at Norwich Cathedral to be enthralled, educated, and above all entertained! First we heard all about David Tipling’s recent visit to Papua New Guinea, and how the relationship between people and birds there is really quite unique. After a short break we were thoroughly spoilt by the wonderful singing of Norfolk choir Big Sky and the amazing, mesmerising tales of Hugh Lupton. A wonderful evening was enjoyed by all, and money was raised towards this year’s English Banana Trust Free Summer School for English teachers.

Norwich Cathedral.

David Tipling's Presentation

Big Sky Choir - warming up!


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Listen to Interview with English Banana Trust Chairman on BBC Radio Norfolk

You can still catch a recent interview with EB Trust Chairman Glyn Purland, which took place on Friday 9th March 2012 at BBC Radio Norfolk in Norwich. Click the link below and fast forward to around 37 minutes in:

http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/console/p00p6b2h

Glyn spoke about the upcoming Trust concert at Norwich Cathedral and also about the Free Summer School for English teachers, which is planned for August this year. Many thanks to presenter Mark Matthews and all at BBC Radio Norfolk for their kind hospitality.


Two Free English Lessons this week on WizIQ.com!

This week I’m doing two free lessons on WizIQ.com. You are welcome to sign up below! Hope to see you there. 🙂

How to Teach English without an Expensive Course Book Public Class

Wed, Mar 07, 2012 | 8:30 PM (Central European Standard Time)

http://www.wiziq.com/online-class/778438-how-to-teach-english-without-an-expensive-course-book

* * * * *

English Banana Trust Free Summer School – Q&A Session #1 Public Class

Sat, Mar 10, 2012 | 5:00 PM (Central European Standard Time)

http://www.wiziq.com/online-class/779030-english-banana-trust-free-summer-school-q-a-session-1