The Crazy Cow, by Dilya Umarova, Yasmina Inomova and Manizha Batirova

2 Aug

The Crazy Cow words and music by Dilya Umarova, Yasmina Inomova and Manizha Batirova Dushanbe, Tajikistan Between the rocks The crazy cow She is alone She wants to eat And broke her horn And starts to cry She runs away … Read More »

Venera, An English Teacher From Tajikistan

1 Aug

Meet Venera. She’s from Tajikistan. In fact, this is a great way to meet Tajikistan itself, a country that few people know about. You can learn some of Tajikistan’s recent history from Venera’s talk. Step 1 Some words you should … Read More »

Two Crickets Kissing, Writing A Haiku

31 Jul

At the 2007 CATEC Conference (Central Asian Teachers of English Conference) I attended a workshop in haiku writing by Ludmila Shirmina from Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. First Ludmila had us brainstorm in groups. We wrote down anything we wanted on the topic … Read More »

Venera Rotation Dictation

31 Jul

Here’s how to do a rotation dictation. It’s a lot of fun. Step 1 Put students in teams of three or four. One person will be a Writer. The others will be Runners. Introduce students to the words/phrases they might … Read More »

The Red Wheelbarrow

27 Jul

Here is another really short poem by William Carlos Williams, which I have set to music. In this 40-second song, the entire poem is repeated twice. Step 1 Play the song and ask students to write down all the words. … Read More »

The 32-Adjective Song

20 Jun

Yep, this song lists 32 adjectives to describe personality or behavior types. Give it a listen and see if students can write down all the adjectives. Stop the song after each verse for lower levels. Repeat as necessary. Key: foolish, … Read More »

Sound Pile

20 Jun

It’s a simple activity – so small and easy and quick that it’s practically a crime not to do it. Play the audio file. Students will hear 10 sounds, more or less piled on top of each other, within the … Read More »

Sound Effect Bingo

19 Jun

This is how you do this fun activity: Step 1. Understand the Language of Sound Hand out the list of sounds (see below). Give students a few minutes to look it over. One easy way to proceed is to ask … Read More »

The Raccoon Story

25 May

My friend Steve tells about a strange incident. But before trying the gap-fill listening activity, make sure you know these 6 vocab items: honk, horn, paws, pesky, run across, steering wheel. When we go (1) __________ every year, we (2) … Read More »

The Excuse Song (Modal Verbs)

13 Apr

When people have to refuse to do something that you want them to do, they often make excuses; and for that they often use a modal or an auxiliary verb. Just think of the nuances of English you get with “I … Read More »