Interview with Jim Scrivener

Interview description

Jim Scrivener, author and teacher trainer, talks about his work with New Oriental in China and his upcoming symposium on Wednesday where he will debate and western and Chinese teaching practice and the reality of classroom experience as well as a brief introduction to the new course book ‘Personal Best’ that he’s working on.


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Thanks Jim! We are so looking forward to #PersonalBest and #PersonalBestTeaching! @Richmond_ELT

Chris Fry's picture

I really agree with Jim on this, but all is not lost with coursebooks that use the listening and reading skills material to 'present' language. What I always do is teach the language points first and practise them briefly before using the skills materials as input for students to listen to (even if it was originally envisaged as a reading) and which they will then retell, ideally, to someone who hasn't listened to it.

My students always record themselves doing this and they mostly do the task twice: the first time to someone who HAS heard it, followed up by some class feedback from me, and the second time for real to someone who has no idea what they are going to find out.

Students work in pairs retelling the 'story' and it's fantastic to watch all the eye contact between them and it gives another oportunity to monitor and give feedback afterwards.
The fact that it has all been recorded means that both teacher and students can listen to their performances and evaluate them.

Personally, I always get my students to use the ipadio apps for this. Free, up to 60 minutes for each recording, no limit on total recording time, very unlikely to expose younger students to inappropriate or distracting recordings. The support is also very good. There are plenty of other apps out there, but ipadio also offers automatic or selective cross-posting to eportfolios on wordpress, blogger and other platforms. What's not to like?

Nives Torresi's picture

@Chris Fry: Thank you for sharing your ideas and the link to the phone casting app!! I am installing now and going to suggest it to my online students too. I think it's a great way to practice listening to themselves in order to improve their own pronunciation and speech patterns. As you say I think that this is a great way to monitor their work and give feedback. I normally got my students to just use the audio recorder that comes with their phone but this app looks amazing.


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