‘Canadian and American /T/’ by Ben Smith

Ben Trawick-Smith’s latest blog post is titled “Canadian and American /T/”.

Ben says, “My impression is that Canadians these days more likely to use the same consonant in “rider” as the one they use in “writer.” But I can’t say how much of a change this is; it seems to me that there used to be more Americans who used un-tapped /t/ in these words as well, and it’s likely that, conversely, tapped /t/ has been a feature in Canadian English for a long time.”

Canadian and American /T/

Ben Smith’s Blog



Make your CV stand out from the pile

Once upon a time, getting top scores in a law degree automatically guaranteed you a job. Only a small minority would achieve such high marks and they were considered the best of the best.

These days however, the amount of students gaining top marks actually increased by 16% in 2012. This means that students are finding it increasingly difficult to stand out from other applicants.

It isn’t just law students who are finding it difficult either. More people than ever before are finishing university with top grades so if you’re struggling to get ahead then here are a few things you can do to improve your job prospects.

Gain internships and work experience while studying

One thing many students don’t think about while they’re actually studying at university, is gaining valuable work experience too. This helps you to gain the experience you’ll need when you leave and sets you on the right path within your chosen career.

If you’re studying a Southampton Solent University architecture degree for example, it would help if you could gain on-field experience with a big company before you finish your course. If you’re applying for unpaid work experience, there’s a higher chance you’ll get accepted.

Have a good understanding of the job you’re applying for

What many students don’t end up doing is researching the company they are applying to. It will really help you to have a good understanding of who the company is, what they stand for and any current issues they are facing. You can then tailor your CV to suit their specific needs.

The biggest mistake you can make is to submit a generic CV that doesn’t really give much away about your experience in reference to the job at hand.

Chronicle your gap year and charity work experience

Gap years are increasingly popular with students. Providing you with essential life experience, they are often seen favourably by employers.

It’s important that you list your gap year experiences in chronological order to avoid confusion and explain any gaps in employment. Also mark down any charity work you’ve completed as this shows you have an enterprising spirit.

Your best shot at standing out from the crowd is to gain some form of work experience while you’re studying. This will help to give you additional skills that other students won’t have learnt.

Being prepared to go that extra mile for a job is always looked upon favourably. Remember to research everything you can about the company before you apply too.

Worksheet: ‘Containers and Quantities Dice’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled, ‘Containers and Quantities Dice’

Two dice for revising containers, quantities and countable and uncountable nouns. Recommended for elementary students who are asked to to roll both dice and then make a sentence by using the picture clue provided.

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Worksheet: ‘Sport and Game – What Is the Difference?’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled, ‘Sport and Game – What Is the Difference?’

This worksheet contains the definitions of such notions as “sport” and “game”. It has several lexical and grammar exercises (choosing the alternatives and the correct answers) that are connected with sports activities. It can be used to practise the students’ grammar and lexical skills in English.

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Worksheet: ‘Letter Z PowerPoint’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled, ‘Letter Z PowerPoint’

This PowerPoint introduces letter Z z. It is appropriate for the beginners of learning English who are learning alphabet, specially children. The learners learn 4 new words that start with Z through some pictures. It’s created by novingoftman@gmail.com. Hope it helps.

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Worksheet: ‘Have Got – Haven’t Got’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled ‘Have Got – Haven’t Got’

A colourful worksheet for practising ‘have got’ and ‘haven’t got’ in the 3rd singular and 3rd plural form. Three characters are presented: John and Mary and Katie. The pupils are asked to see and write what each child has and hasn’t got. Note: If the pupils have not been taught the target vocabulary, it is suggested to do so, before completing the worksheet.

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BBC Article: ‘Planning a writing lesson’

BBC TeachingEnglish team has posted an article titled, ‘Planning a writing lesson’

Writing, unlike speaking, is not an ability we acquire naturally, even in our first language – it has to be taught. Unless L2 learners are explicitly taught how to write in the new language, their writing skills are likely to get left behind as their speaking progresses.

But teaching writing is not just about grammar, spelling, or the mechanics of the Roman alphabet. Learners also need to be aware of and use the conventions of the genre in the new language.

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BBC Article: ‘Class journals’

BBC TeachingEnglish team has posted an article titled, ‘Class journals’

Students often write in their English classes, following a specific genre in order to do so: the informal email; a job application letter, etc. Of course, it is important that they learn this kind of writing (which is usually essential for exam success), but it doesn’t always encourage them to write for the sake of writing, and to get used to writing in a more relaxed and creative way.

The aim of this lesson plan is to introduce the writing journal into the class, as a different kind of class writing activity, which can become an additional tool in order to help students develop their writing skills.

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BBC Article: ‘How useful are comprehension questions?’

BBC TeachingEnglish team has posted an article titled, ‘How useful are comprehension questions?’

You may well ask me “How useful is the question in this title?” After all to check what a student has understood after listening to or reading an L2 text seems plain common sense. If it were not felt to be a sensible procedure why would course book writers supply comprehension questions in large quantities?

Teachers’ comprehension questions
Comprehension questions are a part of an EFL teacher’s arsenal that few people would regard as controversial. In ordinary conversation, in L1, it is quite normal to ask a comprehension question if you are unsure about what the other person has said. You might break into what they are saying and hypothesise: “Oh, so, do you mean that……?”

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BBC Article: ‘BritLit – 10 years in the making’

BBC TeachingEnglish team has posted an article titled, ‘BritLit – 10 years in the making’

I can still remember the faces when I suggested a method of dealing with what most teachers of English considered one of their pet horrors, extended reading. The room was full of tired teachers, and many were quite cynical about the offer to work together to create a new and dynamic approach to the place of stories in the classroom.

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Keeping your business in good shape

Running a business is one of the most satisfying experiences you can have in your professional life. Whether you are operating in health and fitness or IT, marketing or publishing, car maintenance or property management; being your own boss calls on a range of skills.

It means being able to respond to challenges and manage relationships with staff and clients. There is also the small matter of needing to make a profit!

With all of the demands on a business owner, following this route is not for the faint-hearted.

Luckily, there are ways and means of taking some of the pressure off so that you can focus on what you do best. [Read more…]

BBC Article: ‘Jamie Keddie – Visual literacy in ELT’

BBC TeachingEnglish team has posted an article titled, ‘Jamie Keddie – Visual literacy in ELT’

They say that every picture tells a story. They are completely wrong. The idea that an image can be conveniently associated with a single narrative contradicts everything that we know about language, semantics, art, philosophy and human beings.

To illustrate the idea that every picture does not tell a story, we could think back to Christmas 2012. A tourist in New York City took a snapshot of a random act of kindness. Within a few days of sharing the photograph online, it went viral. I remember it being at the top of my newsfeed every time I logged on Facebook. The thousands of positive comments were full of adjectives like beautiful, heartwarming, touching, inspiring and heroic. The story that this picture told, apparently, was a Christmas fairytale.

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Worksheet: ‘Talk for a Minute’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled ‘Talk for a Minute’

This ppt is a good game for your students to practice speaking for one minute on one of the topics that they are going to choose by luck, it is appropriate for a conversation class ( beginner- intermediate), I hope you enjoy it, it ‘s very interesting.

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Worksheet: ‘London’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled ‘London’

It is a text about the capital of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It contains facts about London. You can use it as a reading comprehension task, a home reading task or an extra material. I’ll hope it is useful. Have a nice day!

Download ‘London’ Worksheet

Worksheet: ‘Geographical Position of Great Britain’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled ‘Geographical Position of Great Britain’

It is a text about the geographical position of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland. It contains facts about the geographical position such as location, mountains, rivers etc. You can use it as a reading comprehension task. Have a nice day!

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Worksheet: ‘Winter’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled ‘Winter’

Students have to match some pictures with some words related to winter, find some other words in the word search, and complete a text about winter. The worksheet can be used for teaching and revising vocabulary related to winter, sports, activities, weather and clothing. If you download it, would you rate it, please! Thank you.

Download ‘Winter’ Worksheet

Worksheet: ‘Research Topic – Mount Fuji’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled ‘Research Topic – Mount Fuji’

This resource has been created for elementary/primary students. It is a research topic about Mount Fuji. Students are asked to write a short report about Mount Fuji and include the answers to the three questions in their report. Encourage your students to start compiling a list of the key words that they will use when writing their report. This worksheet was created by PrimaryLeap.co.uk

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Worksheet: ‘British Royal Family’

The BusyTeacher team has published a new worksheet titled ‘British Royal Family’

This can be used for the topic of family/ friends. It’s a simple worksheet that could be useful to talk about the British Royal family (names, ages, dates of birth) and revise family members in English (although Prince George is not featured!). The instructions are in French but can be amended.

Download ‘British Royal Family’ Worksheet