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Classroom Activities

English Teaching Materials, Games and Activities

April 04, 2014

Opening Doors

It's been a long time since I've written anything here. I've been thinking about coming back for quite some time and then my login page was gone, wiped out, but it was only renewed and I didn't have the link till now.

Creativity is somewhat of a mystery but it's an innate gift which we all have, though it seems to be more accessible to some individuals than to others, as for myself, it comes and goes, definitely goes in the summer when it's too hot to think. Still, it remains a mystery as to where the next spark that will ignite that fire within is coming from. Certainly I got a whole lot of ideas from using New Finding Out by David Paul but in the end I was flogging a dead horse and coming up blank. Although I'm still happily using Finding Out in the classroom, I'm no longer using it for opening doors in those deep recesses of my mind.

One never knows what will inspire your next big idea, my own recent inspiration came by accident when my good friend Judith Laurel-Nishikawa was selling some teaching materials in support of the victims of Typhoon Yolanda in the Philippines and I chose to buy some books, which I had never heard of before, from her. I bought some copies of Doors to Grammar published by McGraw-Hill Education. I had always liked this publisher's materials but, having only a small school myself, I didn't have much opportunity for using their textbooks.


Shocking! A grammar book which I actually like. I have had many grammar books on my bookshelves, but usually they have gathered dust until I've given them away or throw them away. I couldn't say it was a weak point for me, rather, in spite of me being an English teacher, it just wasn't part of my life and I found it somewhat, dare I say, boring. Anyway, I plan to start writing in this column again and I want to share with you some of the activities and materials which I have been inspired to create by using Doors to Grammar in the classroom. And I hope that by doing so you too will have some doors opened for you.

For teachers in Japan this coming week is the busiest of the year and totally confusing because it's the start of the new school year, but surviving that we can soon get back to our regular rhythm and it's then that I will start writing in this column again.

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