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Observing, reflecting and the occasional rant.

Last Build Date: Fri, 10 Mar 2017 01:33:28 +0000


You’re not from round here, are you?Candy

Fri, 22 May 2015 10:10:54 +0000

I was out with friends having a perfectly fine Sunday somewhere down near the Thames in Berkshire. We were joined by a couple and the first thing that was said to me was, “You’re from South Africa.” Now ordinarily, I’d have said, “Yes. Gosh is my accent still so obvious?” But suddenly and without warning, I […](image)

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Innovation and Crap DetectionCandy

Wed, 13 May 2015 09:29:44 +0000

I was talking to a student of mine and could hear myself sounding more and more South African as I was waxing all passionate about how marvellous language is, especially English, because once you have control of it – mostly – you can do such a lot with it and make it do stuff for […](image)

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Into the Void.Candy

Mon, 27 Apr 2015 11:40:08 +0000

I’ve done a number of MOOCs – one on the English country house which was grand, one on Shakespeare which was equally grand and one on Writing Fiction. (I have always wanted to be a writer.) I didn’t finish the writing fiction course and started questioning my motivation to be a writer. “Can’t be that […](image)

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Working For MyselfCandy

Sat, 25 Apr 2015 09:51:45 +0000

I was always told that working for myself was a far better option than working to make money for someone else. And I am now working for myself. It is tough – much tougher than working for someone else because nothing happens unless I make it.  And, although I am not working to fuel the […](image)

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Two Hundred and Fifty TwoCandy

Sat, 25 Apr 2015 09:08:58 +0000

I am working with a researcher at Coventry University at the moment.  His work concerns the legacy of the London Olympics and Paralympics. In the five London boroughs that played host to the Olympic Park, there are no fewer that 252 languages or dialects. I though that was something we should all know.(image)

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Why I loathe testing.Candy

Thu, 16 Apr 2015 09:00:54 +0000

For a while, I was never really involved in testing and assessing students’ language use. I taught Business English at a centre where the students’ performance was more important than an IELTS score. They were engaged in real life – taking their place as a part of building real solutions to real issues, part of […](image)

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Don’t do it.Candy

Thu, 10 Jul 2014 08:47:36 +0000

This was going to be another fulminating rant about the status quo in EFL, but honestly, I’m too damn tired to summon up the energy. That’s not to say I won’t have wound myself up to a fine pitch by the end, but here at the beginning, the tone is one of profound weariness. I […](image)

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I do, I do….(for now)Candyimages-2imagesimages-3

Wed, 07 May 2014 09:44:04 +0000

I know most marriages don’t start out with the “for now” bit, but I’m guessing maybe some of them do: the “for now” is mumbled under breath and hopefully out of earshot – à la Jeremy Clarkson. But I wouldn’t put too much store by a marriage that starts out thus. And that’s what the […](image)

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The Deleted PostCandy

Thu, 01 May 2014 14:22:43 +0000

This time last year – about – I was prevailed upon to delete a post that was deemed “politically” risky (read ‘anti-corporate’). This is the post: As I sat looking disconsolately at the end-year figures, I said, “Damn, if we had managed to get in just a few more students, we would have broken even.” […](image)

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Sound and FuryCandy

Sun, 06 Apr 2014 18:56:11 +0000

Sometimes I get involved in things and then spend days wondering if I’m crazy, or stupid or disengaged. This weekend has been one of those times. It started off with a few Facebook posts which were reactions to a talk Sugata Mitra had just given about his “hole-in-the-wall” experiments. I don’t really want to go […](image)

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