January 30, 2014 § Leave a comment

More possibilities for activities.

The Book:
Use it for guided verbal work. Specifically the beginning parts.  Then have J. do the workbook.  Guadalupe should do so too.  May not be workable unless Gaudalupe has the time for homework.

Computer Lab:
On my empty new site – create quizzes for:

  • Regular and Irregular Verbs.  This can build needed vocabulary as well.
  • Simple Past, Present, and Future Verb forms.  Limit it to commonly used Regular Verbs.
  • Regular Verbs – Simple Past, how many syllables?
  • Written observations of images?  I need to explore that in more detail.
  • Multiple choice for proper Word Order.
  • Prepositions – explore

jan29 class plan

January 27, 2014 § Leave a comment

There were a couple of students absent last week.  We will review the worksheets from 22jan, which will also help them catch up.  Too much for one class, need to parse it out. Ah, 2 classes per week for Feb.  good.

Added – idea to combine review of Progressive and To Be, for all.  

  1. Review To Be – simple past, present, future. 
  2. Write sentences with Progressive/Contiuous – blanks for verbs.
  3. Have basic students conjugate To Be
  4. Have adv students form the correct -ing of the verb.

1).  Do The Paragraph.  Student guided, as a group, I will write.

The Crazy Weather

  • Cold, warm, temperature – went up, went down, numbers.
  • Snow, sleet, windy, sunny
  • Traffic, wrecks, 20 car pile up
  • Schools cancelled – did they go to work that Friday?

2).  Alphabet and numbers – verbal/pronunciation.  First as a group.

3).  Information sharing:  

Bring in Austin map!

  • Have them tell me their name, number and address.  They will spell for me as I write.  And they write their own info.
  • Describe where they live in relation to the school.  General directions – south, near, far, major streets near by, etc.
  • How do they get to class?  Bus, drive, a ride
  • How long does it take to get to class?
  • IF I bring map(s) – find their home on the map, mark it and give them maps.

4).  Grammar – presentation and worksheets

  • Advanced: Possesive Pronoun vs. Possesive Adjective – mine/my
  • Basic:  To Be – past, present, future

Computer ideas – next class?:

  • Google Maps.  Show them how to find their addresses, and maybe directions to the school – either way, print maps.
  • Find games or puzzles for each level


  • Do not bake a cake Toni, it will suck – buy cake!  Randall’s.  Italian cream cake? (Hate icing)
  • Fizzy water and fizzy apple juice  – cheers!
  • Sing the dreadful birthday song – write lyrics on the board.

class notes from 22jan

January 27, 2014 § Leave a comment

What we did in class…


The Rule for Doubling the Last Letter with -ing:

  • One syllable word – ends in vowel-cons-vowel, double the final cons.
  • More than one syllable – final cons is doubled ONLY if the stress falls on the final syllable.
  • Exceptions – never double H, W, X, Y


I followed the plan from 22jan post.  The main parts.

  1. Review To Be
  2. Stuff I cannot remember
  3. Prepositions of position
  4. Worksheets – Nominative pronouns for Jesse (2 pgs) and Present Progressive verb formation for Alma and Annia (4 pgs).

I don’t explain Pronouns well.  It is so simple, but confusing for those that have not studied grammar.  They understand the words – translated.  But the concept of substituting a pronoun for a noun, in exercises, is a bit different.  Fortunately it does come along with lots of practice.  Like most things.

Conversation: We spent the last 15 minutes of class chatting.  Really Annia and I asked Jesse questions.  It was great, in a way. We communicated well.  Jesse did not have her translator classmate that day.  It was bad because her daughter is ill and undergoing tests for serious health matters.  She was a little teary.  It was important that she was able to share her burden with us – and in English was a bonus.  (Alma had to leave early – so again, no translator)

Don’t forget – Annia’s Birthday is Thursday! 

class room ideas

January 27, 2014 § Leave a comment


Start using the book.  Beneficial for the new students.

Topics for glitter book –

  1. Rewrite The Paragraph – changing tense, person, adjectives, or nouns.
  2. Introduce well known works of art – presentation, group discussion, then individual writing:
  • Stick to representational art for vocabulary purposes.</li>
  • Give artist, name of piece and date.
  • Historical context would be good too, occasionally, overkill – I don’t care.
  • Write:  These will be separate writing topics, not all at one time…

Feelings from or about it, and why.  Describe it – colors, name of objects, number of objects, painting, stained glass, fresco, sculpture – statue. Setting – a room, church, house, field, time period, war, coronation, nativity.

Item 2 caveats…

PROBLEM Technical and logistal problem:  No overhead projector, no color copying, computer lab has lg screen – but it is open and centrally located – we may disturb other people.   Rats!!


Note:  well known pieces so not distributing copies to keep is not all bad. Still it is extremely lame.

  • Use computer lab anyway 😦  Then they could see on their own screens too.  Visiting museum sites is awesome.
  • Have color copies made – use plastic sleeves.  I keep copies.  😦
  • Combination of above – intro, discussion, vocabulary in classroom, write in computer lab.
  • Possibly write about piece on computer – in comments, or create a member only place/forum on my site for students.  Ideal, but just logging in and starting may be a time consumer

Forum for Students on my website –  spontaneous activity, perhaps. 

  • A place to practice writing/reading to each other?  Like texting?  Perfection not required.
  • Perhaps I can pose conversational questions, they can answer.  What did you do last week, etc.

Computer Lab

View works of art by the same artist, others in the same school of work or time period.   Museum sites!

Also have them Google Search for images by the artist. 

class plan 22jan

January 22, 2014 § 3 Comments

I have decided the method for presenting to different levels.  Present some material from a basic level working up to more advanced.  It will be new for some, review for others, then advanced for all.  They can gleen what they can from it.  Explain to beginning students to follow as far as they can only.


  • To Be: Simple Present to Continuos – further is possible
  • Present Tense – Simple and Progressive/Continuos : worksheets


  • Pronouns – Personal, Possesive (and Possesive Adjectives) : worksheets
  • Prepositions of place – on, above, over, in front of, beside, below, under, behind. : handout beginners, verbal review for all.
  • Phrases using Over – “get over it” “I am over that/him” “over there” “over-time” “over time” – it will get better over time – “over do, eat, use, protective”
  • What about “too”? – goes with “over”

 Note:  Look at RSS feeds!

Again, a lot of material depending on explanation time.

class note: students

January 21, 2014 § Leave a comment

There were 2 new students in my class. So excellent!  

I spent time talking with them, the usual – where are you from, where is your family, about their families – # of siblings, etc.  It gave me an assessment and got them to interact, to not sit silent and confused.

Class:  They are both true level 2 students. We can communicate with a little work.  I introduced the list of phrases from last class post.  I reviewed To Be, the concept of Past and Present – with gestures and words.  We continued on a very basic, but productive level.  

One student was very nervous initially – overwhelmed because she didn’t understand me at all and the first class had been scary – of course.  But with a little extra time, each time I made a point, we made it.  Ultimately she told the desk that she was happy and excited about class. Success!

Class Level:  I am concerned for a couple of the advanced students.  They sat patiently through very basic material.  I have decided that I need to cater to the true beginning level 2 students, primarily. Especially in grammar presentation, etc.  I want to continue to challenge my brilliant ones though.  They are so hard working, both in and out of class – and very eager.  Treasures.  

Extra Time:  I hope to be meeting semi-regularly with Oscar.  He had to drop classes due to work.  While not the hardest worker in class, his interest has spiked in an effort to advance at work. He would like to be a waiter, a big step that I am thrilled he has taken on.  I am challenged as to how to help him best – but through asking him, we piece things together.  Grammar makes his mind numb, or did, but he will have to suffer!  

Oscar: I need to supply him with computer excercises to do at home.  Grammar and vocabulary?  Some listening exercises.

Miracle: a new site

January 20, 2014 § Leave a comment

It has been almost a year and I finally found a web host for my sites that AT&T does not block from my home.
I still cannot believe it. Nothing to see yet at

I must go somewhere other than my house to access my old sites. And rebuild, again. Ideally better than before. I cannot wait.

Where Am I?

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