Streamlining and Downsizing

Over the course of summer 2016, I am going to be streamlining my Big English Blog with a view to downsizing a little. It has become too big to handle.


You may have noticed that a large number of the tabs have disappeared. The information is still here – it has just been tidied up a bit. If you can’t locate what you are looking for, try the SEARCH box.

downsizing cartoon


I am also going to be relocating all training resources and information onto the sister blog :

You can find where to go by visiting the FORMATION tab and you will be pointed on your merry way to the correct place.

Any comments or questions always welcome via the CONTACT page.

Enjoy your visit and thanks for dropping by !!

2014 in review – thanks to everyone who sailed with me in 2014 !!

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 22,000 times in 2014. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 8 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.

The new school year begins here




The new school year has begun. 2014-2015 will bring its share of fun and surprises. Welcome to all my new students, young and old, to my blog. You will need to visit these pages very regularly, so save me in your favourites !!! Take some time to have a look around, find things that interest you and that will be useful to you. But above all, take a moment to read, understand and reflect on my quote of the day.


Another goal to reach

As I am writing, the number of hits on this blog is 18,374. With three and a half weeks until the Easter holidays, my goal is to reach 20,000 hits before Easter. Can we do it ? Yes, we can !! I know we can. How do I know this ? Because I am confident in the knowledge that my pupils are working hard and using this blog to do so. I can see it on the stats as I follow who is doing what. I see it in their work in the classroom as they re-invest what they have been doing at home.

I know we can do it because I see also the countries that are following my blog too. I check my stats page every day to see which countries are there and I smile to myself as I realize that people around the world are checking out what I have to offer. It is very exciting being part of the blogosphere and to know I am being read around the world.

So, we’re on the road to 20,000 before April 19th. Let’s see how quickly we can get there, everyone.


What a lot of a clicks !!

I checked out my stats this morning, as I regularly do, just to see who is reading me and I was at 17,000 hits exactly. Back in October 2013, I was getting all excited because I was fast approaching 11,00, so 6,000 hits in 6 months is a pretty good rate, I’d say. So thanks to my wonderful students, as always and to the people around the world who click here regularly.

To celebrate, here is a Happy Bunny …


Blogging evolves into more blogging

I am becoming more and more interested in the role of blogging in teaching and have been enjoying reading a number of teacher blogs over this holiday period. It is actually quite addictive as everyone seems to do things quite differently and yet, at the same time, there is an echo of familiarity within the teacher blog. For me, as an English person living and teaching within the French school system, I appreciate this link with things back home and to be able to keep up to date.

The blogpost from @teachertoolkit Addiction to blogging was a true eye-opener for me this Saturday morning. Just clicking on my Twitter feed, to see what’s occurring, as they say, I got dragged into the article, thinking it looked like a good read. However, about a third of the way in, this paragraph hit me :

“If you are reading this. I am assuming the chances are, that you could be a cynosural-blogger with an addiction to social-media of sorts. Note the time you are reading this? Who are you with? Where are you you? What else could/should you be doing?”

It brought me up with a shock, making me take stock and remembering that my youngest son was waiting for me in the kitchen, with a mug of tea (in my favourite mug), some toast and the plan to make chocolate brownies together. So to answer the question “what else should you be doing ?”, well, I should be spending quality time with my youngest and not spending the time reading about blogging and blogging addiction.

I often talk about the “work-life balance thingy” and I find it one of the hardest parts of my life. Being married to a non-teacher, the time I spend preparing, marking and planning is time that I am not spending with my hubby, who is as free as a bird at weekends. I am not suggesting I am the only one who has to deal with this problem, but as the years go by, I am beginning to resent the pulls on my time more and more.

So, now the chocolate brownies are made,  the Xmas tree has been taken down. the fish tank has been cleaned out and the lunch is done and dusted, here is a bit of “me time”, a window for my blogging.Chocolate brwonies This blog is having visits from all over the globe – Malaysia and Indonesia today, Greece yesterday. I feel very proud to have such varied visitors – and of course, my students from school are popping in and out.

Blogging leads to more blogging – this post will lead to another and to another. I hope you will keep reading. And I hope I will be able to keep my eye on the ball, professionally but also, the “what is truly important” ball !! Let’s not forget what that really is.