Favorite words ?!

My blog description reads: “I am an English teacher trainer with a passion for beauty, fashion, dance, music, reading, languages…” Languages, you may wonder? Apart from the fact that I am an English teacher, language and linguistic oddities have always been a passion of mine, but as of late I have not been writing much…

Dutch vs English – Present tense

Last week I wrote about cognates in Dutch and English and had a closer look at the differences and similarities between the two languages based on vocabulary. I already pointed out at the time that these differences and similarities not only go for vocab but also for grammar. That is why, starting today, I will…

Dutch vs English

Two weeks ago I wrote a post on how difficult it can be to learn a foreign language. People responded to that post asking for some more language posts. One request was to know more about cognates and similarities and difference between Dutch and English. You ask, I deliver.  Today’s post will be on linguistic…

I have found a new job!

I know, I know, I’ve been spreading this news like crazy the past couple of days, but now it’s official! From August 1st I will be switching jobs. I will go from a regular English teacher to an English teacher trainer. That’s right, I will train others to do the job I’ve been doing for…

Dunglish at its best

These past couple of weeks my students have been taking exams and that means that I had to do a bunch of grading. Grading can be quite a tedious task, but not when you find the creative solutions an linguistic oddities I encountered during this round. Many of my students are not good at English….

English is easy?

Whoever said English is easy, is completely wrong. There are many fun poems, scribbles and the like showing you the difficulties English can cause. I just couldn’t help but want to share the next piece of text when I received it in my inbox. I don’t know who made it, but this isn’t my text….

Tour of my Book Case

As you may know I like to read the occasional book or two. Instead of showing you what I’m currently reading I though it would be nice to show you the books I have. I have quite the collection. I think I’ve got over 600 books now. Most books I bought when I was a…

Dialectblog.com: On language variation

Just the other day I found one of the coolest blogs on the web: dialectblog.com. Of course you do have to like English language variation for this, but I think it’s pretty neat. Not only does it list American, British and Irish accents and their features, but the author also delves into language variation phenomenon,…

Why I became a teacher

For some people it takes ages to figure out what they want to be when they grow up. For me, it was a no brainer. At least, once I hit my teenage years. When I was little I wanted to be a writer, a flight attendant and a dancer, but once I turned 14 –…

Fashion across borders

If you’ve been following this blog, then you know that I like my fair share of clothes and shoes. Shoes are a special favorite as I have quite a few of them, but there was one thing I didn’t know about them yet. Apparently different types of shoes are called something different in US and…

Teaching is Fun! (Or: what I like about my job)

Sometimes, I feel I whine too much about my job and I may come off as not liking it at all. Yes, it’s stressful. Yes, I have lots of grading to do (there’s yet another pile waiting for my appraisal as we speak). Yes, there are usually too few hours in the day to get…

The English Passive: the mystery of ‘there are’

For some reason making passive sentences in English is something many Dutch people have trouble dealing with. It’s the one grammar function that takes up most of my time in class when I try to explain it and it’s the one construction my students get wrong the most. However, passives in English need not be…

The Daunting Qualities of English Pronunciation

Pronouncing English correctly is quite a feat when you’re not a native speaker of English. Not only are there so many different varieties of English with specific word use and pronunciations, but just to figure out how to say any word can be a source of worry and frustration for many learners of English. Here…

Some more gems produced by students

A few months ago I posted on some of the wonderful English mistakes my students came up with during their exams. It’s that time again. Last week, my students had to sit another exam and here’s some of the wonderful language gems they came up with. Note: even I, a teacher, with every wish to…

Dutch for Beginners Part 1 – Introduction

As most of you probably know, I’m a Dutch girl, who teaches English at a college in The Netherlands. However, when I was a student, studying to obtain my MA degree in English, I worked as a teacher of Dutch as a Second Language at a language institute in The Hague. Here, I mainly taught…

Tips for Non-native speakers of English

It has happened to all of us who use English as a foreign language: you are having a conversation with someone in English and suddenly there is this one word that you just don’t know. Or, for some reason or other you just have this black out and you can’t even think of what it…