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non-Native Speaker

Seven easy steps you need to follow to teach English as a Lingua Franca

A few weeks back I wrote a post about the three reasons why I think we need to rethink our current approach to teaching English (EFL/ESL), suggesting we start teaching English as a Lingua Franca (ELF). To recap, teaching ELF can: provide a more realistic and authentic input, thus better preparing our students to use English …

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FECEI issues a statement against native speakerism

In February this year I had the pleasure to attend FECEI’s (The National Federation of Private Language Schools in Spain) annual conference in Madrid. For a while I’ve been really amazed with all the great work FECEI has been doing to promote equal opportunities in ELT, especially as far as ‘native’ and ‘non-native speakers’ are …

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Do you prefer a ‘native’ or a ‘non-native speaker’ teacher? – the wrong question to ask

When we ask people in ELT, in particular the recruiters, why so many schools hire ‘native speakers’ only, one of the most common answers you will get is: market demand. In other words, the clients demand ‘native speakers’, and thus if the schools want to stay in business, they need to offer classes with ‘native …

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How to get a job in Japan as a non-native speaker teacher following these three easy steps

You might have heard that Japan is a bit of a difficult market for ‘non-native speaker’ teachers. In fact, many of the jobs are explicitly advertised for ‘native speakers’ only. You shouldn’t get discouraged, though. Meet Nicholas… Nicholas Susatyo is originally from Indonesia, but he’s been working as an English teacher in Japan for several …

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How to raise students’ awareness and tackle native speakerism using these five simple activities

You are probably familiar with the widespread preference for ‘native speakers’ in ELT job ads, especially as far as the private sector is concerned. However, this is just one manifestation of the ideology of native speakerism visible in our profession. And if we are serious about tackling it, we also need to look beyond the …

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How to motivate students using recordings of successful E(LF)nglish users

A lot of the times course books feature a rather narrow range of recordings of standard ‘native speaker’ voices. Just to give you a few examples: Syrbe and Rose (2016) note that most characters presented in books are ‘native speakers’ (mostly either US or British) ‘Non-native speakers’ also tend to contribute much less in dialogues, …

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Boost your confidence as a non-native speaker teacher with these two simple hacks (and get hired!)

In 2011, I applied for a job with a well-known language school in Lisbon.  I had all the right qualifications, the right experience and skills. Or so I thought. What I didn’t realise at the time was that I didn’t have the right mother tongue. I wasn’t a ‘native speaker’. So I was politely turned down. …

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Teaching english as a Lingua Franca: How to use first language to facilitate communication

For a long time, there has been a rather negative view of using first language (L1) when communicating in English. It might sometimes be seen as: an example of lower proficiency or of not being fluent enough in English or of not knowing the right word. However, research clearly shows that multilingual individuals, which all …

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How to motivate and engage low-level learners using TED talks by Lewis Lansford

All too often, we think of authentic input such as a TED Talk as listening material that happens to have pictures – often just a person speaking. However, as a classroom resource, TED Talks offer so much more: the fact that they have sound and images – often visually rich ones, beyond just the speaker …

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I’m no native (English speaker) by Luna Checchini

I can’t remember a time in my life when I wasn’t fascinated by languages. My favorite doll scared the hell out of me when I first met her because she spoke, but she eventually became my favorite doll nonetheless. She. Not it. I’m Italian, I treat objects as people, get used to that. I spoke …

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