Teaching Mixed Level Language Classes Part 1

Teaching mixed level language learners within the same class requires really good planning. It is useful to split the class based on content, or year level. This allows the teacher to give different input to the groups. Learners in one group can work independently on set tasks while the teacher teaches the other group.

2012 Resolutions

We seem to do it every year – make resolutions about the goals we want to achieve. It’s a great thing to do but sustaining the resolution until you actually reach the goal is key! Put in small achievable steps that will help keep you on track until you get there and surround yourself with people, events or things that will continue to motivate you.

Xmas Greetings

Hope everyone has a great Xmas and brings the New Year in with lots of positive vibes for 2012!

Self learning made easier through technology

This is a great video around how you can learn something at your own pace alongside a formal learning programme. The example used is for Mathematics and offers a way for multi-level learning to take place in the comfort and privacy of your own home. I can see great potential in this approach for the learning of languages! Watch videos and listen to audios around a language learning concept, practice in your own time until you achieve total mastery, then practice with a real person!


Represented as two languages existing together in balance – ideas learnt in one language can be transferred to the other language.

Succession planning

We must never forget to up-skill young people alongside us and involve them in high level education such as decision-making, curriculum and assessment writing or we will end up having to continue those responsibilities well into our senior years! As a young teacher I was plucked out of a school to sit alongside more experienced people to help drive national projects but that’s one of the reasons that I am where I am today. I was given the opportunity to learn and experience alongside some of the best. I am definitely on the hunt for young, innovative and clever people to ensure we have a great pool to draw on in the future for national projects!

Japan Tragedy

My heart goes out to the people of Japan who have suffered a devastating tragedy. I spent over 6 years living in their country and have a huge appreciation, respect and love for the people that reside there. Everywhere I went, I was met with kindness and overwhelming generosity. Please accept my humble donation and I urge all Samespeak users to do the same.

Life is For Living to Potential

The earthquake in Christchurch, New Zealand is a reminder to everyone how precious life is and how we need to maximise each and every day that we are alive. Many people died instantly under rubble, smoke and falling debris who never had a chance to say good bye and say how much they loved those that were dear to them. Some were international students learning English, away from home, friends and family. Take a moment to be grateful for what you have and the people you love, let them know you care and strive to reach your own potential while you are here. Sincere condolences to Christchurch, its people, those who passed away and those that remain. Walk forward in hope knowing that the whole world is behind you.

Speak English in 2011

If you’ve been learning English for a long time and still can’t speak it fluently, then you need to try a different approach. The most obvious approach is to use English as much as possible with others. If you don’t practice speaking English, then you will have difficulties communicating with people. Reading, writing and listening is not sufficient. Set a New Years goal and speak English as much as possible in 2011!

Facebook is great for birthdays

I don’t think I have ever had so many people wish me Happy Birthday before until now. In fact, my email froze because there were so many links coming in from people I know well and people I have met across the site. It’s awesome to receive and makes you grateful for the people who really do care out there and want to make contact on a special day to someone!

The “Gift”

On shouldn’t need to create such a “gift” to realise why life is so important and what we are here to do but it does make one grateful after watching the video for what we already have.

Give it heaps

An idiom used to encourage people to do their best. For example:
A:Hey I’ve got an IELTS test tomorrow.
B:Well give it heaps!

“Chillax” English idioms

Chillax – the word used by Eric on Twilight is a mix of two words – relax and chill out. In other words, don’t stress or get worried, just relax and don’t worry! “Hey chillax, it’s OK”

Cultural Richness With English Speaking Friends

I recently had a dinner party at home with five different nationalities (Egyptian, South African, American, Chinese and New Zealander). The experiences between us covered the globe and made me appreciate the rich diversity that people from different backgrounds and cultures bring. We all communicated in English as the most common language but interestingly, we could all speak a number of languages and had all traveled extensively or been resident in countries other than our own places of birth. Hopefully, this will be common for the next generation where understanding of different cultures through the learning of languages and travel might better lead to improved international relations.

Student Engagement

Our government has been wanting students to attend school but there is no point in getting absentee students back to school if they are not engaged! One of the key factors in learning is student engagement – I think it is a focus that all teachers need when they are planning lessons for their students. Make the content engaging, interactive, meaningful and fun so that the students enjoy class and can’t wait for more! Everybody loves to learn new stuff but not if it is boring, repetitive and uninspiring. So come on teachers, start planning lessons that you would have loved as a learner!

Move to make more magic happen

Well it had to happen – the move to the big city to expand samespeak.com. I last lived in Auckland in 2005 when I was HOF at Otahuhu College, teaching English of course and now I’m back here again. Already opportunities have been opening up so am very excited – change is good!

Sir Ken Robinson: Bring on the learning revolution! | Video on TED.com

Sir Ken Robinson makes the case for a radical shift from standardized schools to personalized learning — creating conditions where kids’ natural talents can flourish. You can also read it in English.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Learn American English Through News Stories

If you want practice with American English, try this website:

You can listen to audios of news items while you read but just remember that the English is slower than normal as it is designed for second language learners of English.

Inspirational movie

Meet a family that helped someone and see the transformation in their lives and the life of the boy they adopted. Michael Oher also talks about “never giving up”.

How do I learn English words?

Learn the words in real sentences. It is much easier to remember the word and how it is used in a sentence.

Make contact with an English speaker on FB

I get contacted a lot through Facebook and Skype from people wanting to improve their English. A great way to make initial contact if you want to do this, is look at the person’s profile and find something to talk to them about. Begin a real conversation first and then ask if they can suggest anything that might help you to improve your English!

Can English Emancipate People in the Slums?

An inspirational story about making a real difference through education for the millions in the slums. They teach in English, a language that is not native for the kids but they believe that this language will help them in the future and give them more choices on a global level. It’s not a numbers game but a lifelong game. A big idea, little capital, a small staff, volunteers, you start with one child and you make that experience a lifelong one, helping until that one child makes it out of poverty. And it inevitably snowballs. Take a numbers game (like most governments who want statistics) and you help millions of people to start but you can’t sustain the intensity. The shotgun, short term approach and doomed to death.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Aunty, creative writing in English is like doing Art!

My bi-lingual 13 year old nephew came around to get some help with English creative writing homework. The task was to produce a piece of writing that evoked strong memories of a place and the first part he was working on was around brainstorming ideas to do with the senses. He basically had to list words and phrases under sound, smell, taste etc.

I got him to put down his pen and sit down for a chat. I engaged him in a discussion around what he actually experienced in Fiji when he was there that he really enjoyed. He immediately launched into a vivid description of a shark diving event underwater in the ocean. He excitedly recalled the events with gestures and descriptions so that it was like watching a mini pantomime.

We then talked about how we could write about the event without writing the word shark, jellyfish and coral. He then came up with wonderful figurative language – “sly as a shadow”, “beady eyes following me” “rough as sandpaper”, blobs of jelly pumping like hearts, underwater flowers that bit my hand, ribbons of red dripped down (blood) and so on. His story started to take shape from “I saw a shark and touched some coral that made my hand bleed” to a vivid mosaic of underwater life that ended in suspense. Of course I was leveraging off his first language (Maori) which is very metaphorical and full of imagery!

It was quite thrilling to see a young learner get so excited about the writing of a story! While I got him to begin taking brief notes of our discussion, he paused and said, “Aunty, creative writing is like art – you just need to write your pictures on paper rather than draw them”. What a neat way to sum up an activity that he initially thought was quite simply going to be “stink”!

Mao’s Last Dancer – Movie and Book

I watched Mao’s Last Dancer after having read the book and thought it was a good movie.

The book was fantastic – inspirational for people wanting to achieve a dream.

If you have a dream and you are getting a bit frustrated at seeing any tangible results, watch this movie or read the book. It is bound to inspire you to keep focusing on what you want until you have it!

Speak English Quickly Using MP3s

Listening to MP3s is a quick and efficient way of learning to speak English naturally and quickly. It does not require long hours of study. It requires short, intensive study through listening and speaking. This method is similar to actually living in an English speaking country. You get to hear natural English everyday and then you can start to practice the sentences, idioms and phrases that you hear. However, there are some key things that you need to do for maximum success:

1. The conversations should be short (no longer than 4 minutes on a given topic)
2. The conversations need to be real-life and authentic, just as if they were spoken by native speakers
3. You should be able to read the conversation you hear so that you can become familiar with it before listening
3. You need to listen to the same conversation as often as possible, over and over again until you feel confident that you know it well
4. You can add conversation after conversation on topics you enjoy

You should begin to see results after one week and amazing results after one month if you are consistent.
The best time to listen is when you wake up and just before you go to sleep.

You can walk around with conversations playing through your earphones all day if you want! If you want to try it, I can send you MP3’s and the written conversations (transcripts) to try.

Contact me now to receive free audios and conversations.

Textbook English to Spoken English

It is good to use a textbook when you are learning. Textbooks I would recommend are:

1. Cutting Edge
2. Total English
3. Headway

These texts have online resources that you can use online. If you want to practice speaking live with someone, find a friend who is also learning English on skype or find an English speaker to help you.

English Around The World

It’s really exciting talking to people live around the world through skype! Skype have really improved their service and it really is just like talking to people right next to you. In the last few days I have spoken to people in Greece, Japan and the USA who are wanting to coach or learn spoken English.

English with different accents

Here is a humorous example of understandable spoken English with a Pacific Island accent. You would also need to understand a bit about Pacific Island life in South Auckland, New Zealand to understand the joke and you would best get that from living in the country! See if you can work out what is being said and what it means…

One day Sione was cudding the grass when all of a sutten da
ampulance went going by. Sione straight aways drop his
sapelu and run after da ampulance.

Da ampulance driver look to his side mirror and see a man in
a lafalafa running after him. Afraids for his live becos he
was in Otara’s, da ampulance tryver stepped on da cass.

His ampulance go very, very farce. But Sione farce too.
Sione loose one chandal, but he keep runnings, Sione’s
lafalafa starting to falling downs but he keep runnings.

Da ampulance tryfer look in da side mirror and he is amaze
dat da man wiff da falling down lafalafa and one chandal is
not giffing up!

Da ampulance dryfer is now concern finkings Sione chase him
because he need medical asistance. Sione, was please to see
the ampulance was stoppings for him.

About 3 minute later, Sione catch up to da ampulance.
The ampulance dryfer open da backs toor and say to Sione,
“What is da matters? You needs help?

Sione with his hands on his knees, buffing like hell looks
at da ampulance tryfer and say. “I haff da one snow-cone
wiff da chocolate flakes

Perfect English Pronunciation or Understandable English?

What is the first goal that a second language learner of English should aspire to? Is it being able to speak exactly like a native speaker of English or being understood in English?

It takes years of practice to sound like a native speaker and you would need to immerse yourself in the language. The easiest way to do this is to live in an English speaking country, live with an English speaking family and “hang out” with English speaking friends. What is more achievable is to be able to speak English well enough to be easily understood by any English speaker whether they come from the USA, England, Australia, or New Zealand. The key to communication is being able to express yourself so that you are understood and being able to listen to a range of accents and understand what is being said.

That’s why it is important for you to speak to a range of different native English speakers from different English speaking countries, from different backgrounds, ages, and interests. Once you are used to a certain teacher and their native spoken English, try your skills with another teacher.

Having a variety of English speakers to converse with will greatly assist your English and this is the most natural way to learn. You will, with consistent practice, begin to speak more naturally and make yourself understood. This is a far easier goal to reach when you are learning English than spending hours trying to pronounce words and sounds exactly like a native speaker. However, you will probably find that your pronunciation will naturally increase anyway especially if you practice regularly with English speakers.

So, how much does Avatar borrow from Maori history? | TangataWhenua.com

So a few weeks ago, the newest blog from Digital Maori: Hori 3.0 was created by our CEO, Potaua Biasiny-Tule of TangataWhenua.com. In it Potaua mentioned the interesting parallels between Maori and the Na’vi, the people from the block-buster 3D movie Avatar by James Cameron (director of Titanic).At the heart of the similarities were the […]

Vodpod videos no longer available.

2010 is the year to accelerate your spoken English

Don’t put off tomorrow what you can do right now. If you really want to accelerate your English then you need to consider:

1. Speaking every day by yourself, with friends or with anyone who will practice with you
2. Speaking with native speakers on a range of topics as often as possible
3. Watching and listening to English movies and videos
4. Learning English at a language school or through a good language software programme
5. Reading and writing in English on a range of topics that interest you
6. Singing in English to songs where you know the lyrics
7. Having fun while you are learning and not being afraid to make mistakes

You really get to understand a language by using it as much as possible in a range of different situations!

Peter Jackson Talks Hobbit Casting | The Hobbit Movie

News and gossip from The Hobbit movies. Keep up to date with what’s happening during the making of The Hobbit movies.

Vodpod videos no longer available.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year from Samespeak

All the best for a wonderful Christmas and inspirational New Year! Thank you so much for your support over 2009 and we look forward to speaking and practicing live English with you in 2010.

Fijians have beautiful English

I just spent 5 gorgeous days in Fiji on holiday. Fijians have beautiful spoken English, very eloquent, natural and polite – a legacy I believe of the British influence that still exists today in their education system. However, unlike some other countries that have been influenced by Western colonialism, Fijians have also retained their own language, culture and traditions and are true bi-linguals. Fijians are a good reminder to the rest of us that two languages can be learned to equal levels of communicative proficiency without sacrificing one for the other or having problems with pronunciation given that the two languages are quite disparate. Fijian is Austronesian (Malayo-Polynesian) and English is Germanic!

Holographic teachers?

The next step from real-time communication online has got to be materialising in someone’s lounge and being able to teach, talk and walk as though you were really there with the student. So as long as your virtual holographic teacher can’t see you in your pyjamas, lounging around on the sofa eating chips while you are taking a class, then it’s all good!

Inspired by young adults in our high schools

It’s senior high school prize-giving week and it’s incredibly inspiring to see so many young adults looking forward to their futures with such optimism and choosing a wide range of career options that are all equally valued by the school staff.

While Dux is still a prestigious award, the schools I have seen also ensure that sporting, cultural and work based achievements are equally highlighted through awards and monetary scholarships. One of the Head students said in her speech to the graduates – “you are the source of your own success in your journey, no one can stop you from reaching your dreams but yourself, so you are the person who creates your own story”. You could feel a ripple of emotion rip through the crowd – it was quite moving as despite the challenges she had faced, she managed to overcome them all and achieve all she had set out to do.

This message is a lifelong one…what story are you wanting to create?

‘INVICTUS’ TRAILER in HD Mandela and Rugby

The trailer looks good in terms of capturing the spirit of a nation that rose from apartheid to a united force supporting their national rugby team to victory. What a way to bring people together!

http://appleplectic.blogspo…Two words: OSCAR BOUND.”From director Clint Eastwood, ‘Invictus’ tells the inspiring true story of how Nelson Mandela (Morgan Freeman) joined forces with the capta…

Vodpod videos no longer available.


All Blacks Win Rugby in Tokyo

Good on the All Blacks for winning against Australia in Japan. The game definitely brought back memories of Japan and the fabulous 6 years I spent there. In Japan, rice fields are common but grassed fields are not – in fact most playing fields are made of clay. It’s not a good idea to be tackling players on that kind of surface as some of my NZ playing rugby mates found out! A friend of mine from New Zealand was playing for Mazda (Hiroshima) in Japan so we went along to watch and that was when I saw my first grass field – imported from New Zealand! It made me homesick and I gleefully rolled around in it at the end of the game. Honestly, we don’t know how lucky we are in NZ.

The second memory was teaching conversational English to the Japanese Rugby captain (Hirao-San) through a Language School I worked for. He wanted to learn how to speak naturally in social situations like after the game functions and what things you could say to fellow English speaking rugby players and their supporters. We had fun role playing different situations from talking about a game to making friends as the English he had learned was not really appropriate and in some cases considered offensive. For example I told him that you couldn’t just go up to a woman and ask her how old she was without expecting some kind of adverse reaction!

Rugby English is a whole language of it’s own as it’s quite informal and loaded with words and idioms that make no literal sense! Commentators, supporters and players have their own familiar sayings – “Give it heaps”, “waste em”, “full credit”, “scrum”, “tackle”, “line-out”, “try!”. The best way to learn this type of language is to go to English speaking matches and listen to people talking or watch English speaking sports games on TV or computer. You will pick up common sayings that you can shout out with the rest of the crowd and also learn words and sayings that are particular to the sport. As for socialising with English speaking fans…that’s a different language all on it’s own!

Why practice English with a Native Speaker?

Learning English in a classroom and using spoken English in a real conversation is quite different. It can therefore be difficult to understand native speakers or make yourself easily understood. Why is this?

Native speakers of English generally speak quickly. They tend to shorten words, run words together, use incorrect grammar patterns, speak informally, and say things out of sequence. They do not speak like your classroom teacher or the text books and audios that you may have studied as these materials are all designed for classroom use. It can therefore be quite difficult when you try and use your English in a real situation. Don’t give up!

What can you do?
Listen to or watch short news items, videos, blogs, conversations, movies and songs that use natural, spoken English. This will help your listening ability especially if you do this every day. Practice speaking like the native speakers that you hear or see. Converse with native speakers whenever you can and on a daily basis if possible. Ten minutes every day speaking on a range of topics will be more productive than 30 minutes once a month!

Good to take a break from study and work

It’s a long weekend and I’ve decided to actually take a weekend off and take some time to see family and friends. There are a number of things I want to finish but I think taking some leisure time is important as it not only refreshes mind, body and spirit but also reminds me of what is really important!

I also know that time away, no matter how short can make study and work become much easier as you tend to be more focused and motivated to complete things. If you need a fresh perspective on what you are doing – take some time out. It works wonders.

Great English Language Learning Experiences

I am always learning new things and I just discovered a great way to immerse myself in new material that I’m learning. It’s through a cruise on an ocean liner! The conference is held by a gifted woman who offers information in workshops held on a luxury cruise liner. It’s an awesome way to meet other like minded people, immerse yourself on a daily basis and also have an amazing experience as you stop at interesting destinations along the way.

To make things even better, you don’t have to worry about cooking, cleaning or the daily necessities of life as this is all catered for. What a wonderful way to learn and I can’t wait until we leave. I think this is a great way to learn a language and I am keen to begin language cruises in the future based on the same idea. Put language learners and language coaches on the same ship and plan a range of interactive and exciting activities using the target language. Make real friends and have real experiences that will last a lifetime. What do you think? Worth saving up for?

Why Learn A Language

I learned French at High School because I was dancing at the time and dreamed of being a ballet dancer. But also, you were considered “brainy” if you learned French and usually ended up in the top class with all the best teachers. We were lucky to have a native french teacher, Mademoiselle Favier who really got us interested in how to speak as it was quite boring learning from a textbook. She was very stylish and always spoke French to us – we just loved her as our teacher!

I then learned German at University because my sister did it at school and got good results and there was a German student called Hans in the student halls who I practiced everyday with. It was good fun as he taught me some really complex sentence patterns that made my lecturer fall off his seat from amazement!

I then learned Japanese before I went to Japan at night school but I thought the teaching was not very good and I didn’t seem to learn much. I really learned Japanese when I went to the country and HAD to use it to live! I was really motivated then and also paid for private lessons with a university student to accelerate my language.

When I returned 6 years later, I learned Maori at a University in Wellington because I needed it for my job.
So why learn a language? There are many reasons but for me, I had to be able to use it in a practical way or I really couldn’t see the sense of spending all that time studying it. What’s your reason?

A love of teaching

Someone asked me recently why I first became a teacher – the answer? Because I loved igniting that inner spark that all students have to bring out their potential. What did I love about my own teachers? The passion they had for their area of knowledge and their desire to reveal the unknown to me. So while teaching teenagers was my area when I first began teaching, some 20 years later, it’s moved to training teachers but it’s the same approach – a desire to bring out the best in people! Some of the best teachers I know are “untrained” or “unqualified” on paper but absolute dynamite with people and make the best coaches on my site!

Teachers love to teach, administrators love to…

One of my areas of expertise is around working with teachers specifically in senior secondary school curriculum and assessment.

Teachers love to design creative, innovative and informative learning opportunities for their students – that’s one of the things I loved about teaching! But today’s teachers are constantly hampered by paperwork and compliance associated with assessment towards qualifications and quality assurance.

In one of the schools I support, the curriculum context is relevant and linked to the needs of the students (rather than the traditional one size fits all model) but the extra work required to develop appropriate units of work and assessment material is exhausting. No wonder teachers default to the “published” versions that the Ministry offers as “guidelines” for teachers to use with their students even though the context may not suit. The situation is further compounded when the students are in a bi-lingual learning situation and the materials needed have to be translated or developed from scratch in the target language!

I take my hat off to today’s teachers – many of them are there because they want to make a difference to peoples lives not to processes and papers. Many are forced to decide between delivering OK lessons so they can meet compliance and watching as their students disengage or developing innovative material and doing all the paperwork out of school.

Teachers love to teach, administrators love to administrate. Surely it is time to begin developing dual roles where teachers can focus on teaching and relevant assessment alongside another qualified teacher who prefers and is superb at administration and compliance.

Writing good material in English

I have been writing a few drafts now for different purposes in English and I find that it always pays to do these things to ensure good quality work:

If you have spent a lot of time writing it – take a break. I usually go to the gym, or leave it until the next day to check. This way you are looking at it with fresh eyes and you are therefore more likely to pick up errors or confusing sentences.

When you are trying to write on an idea and having a few issues expressing it clearly, try discussing it with someone else. Discussion can help you clarify what you are really trying to say. Pick up the phone and call someone or jump online and chat on a forum with like-minded people.

Get someone else to read your draft and see how clearly they understand what you are saying. Get them to make notes in the margin or on the work to help you or give you oral feedback. This is good to do with short complex sections of work.

Get your final draft proof-read by someone else especially if it is for a specific purpose. This is standard practice in many organizations and helps eliminate clumsy spelling, grammar and clarity issues. Pay the person something for their effort or offer to proof-read their work in return.

Happy writing!

Learn from Asia for Social Networking sites

Compare Facebook with the likes of Mixi, QQ, CyWorld and you can see how far ahead Asian social networking is! The Cyworld site for example is fun, interactive and savvy – you can talk live, text, design, create and innovate. Facebook has made some good changes but it is still behind the types of creative things you can do on these other sites. There is a lot to be learned from our Asian friends!
The slideshow by Benjamin Joffe gives a quick look in to these sites. Click on the link below.

A Practical Reason For Relevant Education

We recently sold a house to a hard working family who never thought it was possible to own their own property. No-one that they could think of owned their own house and so in their minds, they couldn’t either. They thought it was “out of their reach” and for “rich people” so they were content to rent. That is until we sat down with them and discussed the possibility of them owning their own house. It turns out, that they had no idea how to purchase a house, what steps to take, who to approach and how to physically do it so we simply taught them a number of ways that they could buy and helped them along the way with practical advice.

Now it took a good 2 years from when we first seeded the idea with them to initial acceptance that it was possible, to them being the proud owners of their own home (for which they are paying slightly more per week than they were as tenants due to the current low interest rates). The only difference between them being home owners and renters was education about buying property in a language and a way that they could easily understand. They were not taught how to do this in school and the information was not easily comprehensible to them (English is their second language), but now that they have been through the process, gained a valuable education through having the courage to try and eventually succeeded, they are keen to educate others in their community.

That’s why, education needs to be relevant to real life so that people have choices and can take advantage of opportunities such as low interest rates, first home buyer deals and so on. This information can easily be integrated into a school curriculum and we can really start helping people become independent rather than relying on government for handouts. This family are really grateful for our help and we are really grateful that they are passing this information on to others in their community and helped us by buying a property that was surplus to our needs. That’s a win-win situation.

Learn Spoken English with English Movies

We have just uploaded 7 movie scenes with lesson material that you can study by yourself and then you get to practice discussing the movies with a live native speaker of English. We have done this at a very low cost!

Using movie scenes to complement your language learning is a fun and simple way to accelerate your ability to speak and listen to natural English. If you have never left your own country, watching a foreign movie can help you get a sense of how other people live, talk and communicate.

Here is an example of a short movie that will help you speak English naturally from a previous blog. You can also look at this short scene from Pretty Woman and the script that goes with it and try your spoken English out.

Try it!

The Extra Degree Towards Your Success

You are responsible for your results! If you have been learning or teaching English to create better opportunities for yourself, then you need to remember to never give up and remain inspired and motivated to achieve your goals whether they are a better job, more income, the desire for international travel or simply to communicate with more people around the world. This is a great video that will help keep you on track towards your goals that can be played whenever you are feeling a bit low. I hope you all enjoy it.


The year for new beginnings – what themes do you want to put in place?

Getting ahead in 2015

It takes action to get ahead and reach your goals. Start small and then watch how you can accelerate by taking action everyday. I’m going to listen to a language I am wanting to learn for at least 20 minutes each day (in the car), what are you going to do?

Dreaming in a second language

It’s a good sign in your language learning journey when you dream in the target language!

Schoolgirl French

Went to Paris recently and was surprised at the words and phrases I could remember from nearly 35 years ago!

2014 english language acceleration

Actually it doesn’t matter what language you are wanting to learn – the fastest way is to always use it or listen to it every day. If you can speak and listen with native and fluent speakers, then you will definitely improve. That’s my goal for 2014!

Listen , learn and improve!

Upload your language MP3s onto your phone and listen everyday while you are travelling to work!

What a World Cup Means to a Country Like NZ

NZ suffered the Pike River mining disaster, the Christchurch earthquake and the Rena oil spill – a lot of hope was pinned on the mighty All Blacks rugby team winning the Rugby World Cup in October 2011. The entire country got behind the tournament that was hosted here and it was 6 weeks of fantastic fun and support for all teams BUT New Zealanders were wanting to WIN the World Cup after a 24 year drought and a slew of natural and man-made disasters. The final against France was one of the most nerve wracking sporting events I have ever watched along with 50,000 odd fans at Auckland Party Central. If we were stressed, imagine the boys on the field carrying the hopes of 4 million people! I have never screamed so loud at the final whistle and spent the entire night wearing the biggest grin on my face. If you could feel the vibe of this country and the atmosphere at games and the cup parade, you would know what it means to a New Zealander…fantastic!!!