Politeness and distancing

This episode covers the critical language of politeness and distancing when speaking in English. Native speakers of English are particularly susceptible to being offended if we are note careful with how we phrase a request, information and suggestions. This language is especially useful for professionals learning English as a second language but also for ESL teachers who need functional language topics for their students.

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Human Potential lesson idea

This is an original lesson idea on how humanity is pushing the limits. Thanks to technological advances in apparel, equipment and food innovations people are able to accomplish feats never before thought possible. This lesson idea provides some ideas on how to get the your students speaking on this theme as well as vocabulary that is relevant to the topic.

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Ethical Consumption lesson idea

An ESL lesson idea for teachers on this topic should create lots of discussion, different opinions, arguments and plenty of vocabulary words. Perfect for debate scenarios and use of functional language which I discuss in this episode.

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Summer Bucket list lesson idea

This episode covers a speaking lesson idea for ESL teachers, especially at the end of a school year or during summer holiday “camp” courses. It provides some great follow up lessons and ideas as well as vocabulary and speaking practice for students. Like this video? Get more videos by submitting your email for the biweekly newsletter which provides teacher tips and more lesson ideas: http://www.nondas.eu/newsletter/

Reaching a milestone

I’ve done it!

107 chin ups!

20min flat.

It took about 18 months to accomplish it and I was in no rush.

When I stopped the timer on my watch I raised my fist in victory because it felt like a real accomplishment. But the truth is….

I never once thought about it. I didn’t plan it, or think about it. I didn’t set a goal or see someone else do it to inspire me. I just kept going out to the pull up bars and did my sets.

Rain or sunshine, freezing cold or boiling hot I just kept going and doing those sets.

There’s a lesson, and it’s this…..

You are unstoppable!

I grew up being skinny and weak. No muscles, little strength and low self-confidence to match. It’s been my identity for as long as I can remember in my youth and my early adult years. Today was a reminder of how that is all in the past and I am not that person anymore.

We can change. Change our mindset, our mentality, our beliefs and inevitably, our identity. If we don’t like something about ourselves we can change the story we tell by taking action and committing to that for as long as it takes.

A portrait of a time can be taken throughout our lifetimes, again and again, and that is a refreshing thought. Because when I started doing chin ups all I could muster was maybe 30 and now I’ve more than tripled that tally. And I know I am not done yet. That is a humbling thought.

Keep Fighting

For language learners the same applies. The journey is long and difficult, with many cold and uncomfortable painful moments. But it’s the compilation of all those put together that allow for a new portrait to be taken and a new us to be born. Most don’t think it’s possible, but I can assure you, it’s real and not just a dream. Let others keep dreaming, you can choose to go and DO! The only thing that can stop us, is ourselves. It starts with a new story to tell ourselves, a new beginning and a commitment.

There is something about you, and you may not even know how good it really is.

So I suggest you go find out……Nobody needs to know, and you don’t need to tell them, they’ll know when they meet you.

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I need a break!

Episode 85 is a lesson idea for teachers who want to get their class and students speaking on a common topic but with great variety of vocabulary to encourage the sharing of different preferences and opinions. Vacation, accommodation and the different criteria we have as well as synonyms for recommending, are all in this episode. Like this? You can get updates on much more when you submit your email for the biweekly newsletter here: http://www.nondas.eu/newsletter/

Speaking: Rules of Engagement

It’s frustrating when we we feel like people aren’t listening to us, at work, at home or when socializing. This can happen regardless of what language your speaking, your native or second or third. It’s not grammar that is holding you back or necessarily your vocabulary, it helps but it’s not critical.

Language learners, even the good ones, get anxious, stressed and muddled when it’s time to speak but in this post I’d like to share some ideas on speaking in general that apply to all of us regardless of our proficiency in the language. There are some rules of engagements when speaking that compliment very nicely with the top ten tips of having a good conversation, a post from a couple of years but still absolutely relevant today and even more so in many respects. So let’s get to it.

One language processor

We humans only have one language processor, so if it is focused on something else than it stands to reason that it won’t be active in the conversation that is taking place in front of you, because it simply cannot. That means that you need to turn off your smartphone or your laptop. When someone is speaking to you, give them your attention and you’ll find them to be much more responsive when you speak with them in return. If they don’t comply then maybe they are not worth your time, save your breath. But it starts with us, and that means focusing our language processor on the speaker in front of us. It’s up to you!

A promise

Start any talk you are giving, even if it is a short presentation, with an empowerment promise. That means telling your listeners what they will have gained,learned, discovered by the end of your talk. BOOM! It’s then that your listeners know what they will get for their undivided attention, and that is what you promised them. For every talk we give there is always a reason for it and if there isn’t then it’s good to ask yourself whether it’s worth giving at all, even if it is an audience of one, like your boss, your neighbor, significant other etc.

Circle on the subject

Finally, remember that audiences sooner or later will tune you out, it’s almost inevitable and so you need to wheel them back in and how to get them back on the bus exactly? Circle around your subject! Come back to it and tell them again. Ensure that most people get it by telling them three times. There are a few rules of three and this is one of them. Circle around the tip or idea or subject, that way you raise the odds significantly that people will remember and know what you were talking about.

The majority of people get anxious when speaking to audiences or just in a group at a bar. We’ve all been there, but these are three ways to get on track and get everyone listening to YOU. More to follow on this, NOW GO GET ‘EM!

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Proverb series episode: Strike while the iron is hot

This proverb is hot, I mean that it’s popular to use and in so many different situations. Opportunities, opportunities! This episode(84) covers the usage, and how to incorporate it into the classroom for teachers to get their students speaking MORE! Enjoyed this video? The newsletter keeps you update with teacher tips and lesson ideas for FREE! sign up here: http://www.nondas.eu/newsletter/