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TEFL Commute

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United Kingdom


TEFL commute is a podcast for language teachers. It is not about language teaching though inevitably it might crop up. All three of us are avid podcast listeners and like playing around making our own. TEFL commute is meant to be a light-hearted listen aimed at brightening your daily commute to class. Each episode is built a round a topic that you could use in your teaching and the podcast will have page on this site that will link you to articles, questions and resources you can use with your students. You can even get involved by recording your snippet of mp3 for inclusion on a future episode or leaving us a suggestion on this site. We had fun making and developing the idea so we hope you enjoy the listen. Lindsay, Shaun and James






Season 5 Episode 6: Alcohol

In the final episode of the season, Shaun and Lindsay discuss alcohol. We talk about why you never see a drink in a coursebook and discuss claims that alcohol helps language learning. Shaun tests Lindsay on drunken words and Lindsay tries to finally best Shaun in a TEFL fight.

Duration: 00:41:35

Season 5 Episode 5: Clothes

After a small break, the TEFL commute returns to talk about clothes. Lindsay and Shaun discuss what teachers wear to work, dress codes and whether teachers should dress in particular way. Lindsay tries to educate Shaun in Northern American Vocabulary while Shaun gets revenge with some clothes related humour.

Duration: 00:37:37

Season 5 Episode 4: Video and films

In this episode we meet with Ben Goldstein to discuss video. We take a walk down memory lane and look at how video has been used in ELT courses and discuss where it might go in the future. We also ponder whether the ELT classroom would work well in film, considering how the teachers are often portrayed on the silver screen. We think this one of the most interesting episodes we've ever recorded but will you?

Duration: 00:47:56

Season 5 Episode 2: Games part 1

In this episode we once more sit down at our virtual round table. This time we look at the role of games in language learning. Inspired by something James said in the previous series, we talk about our favourite (non-digital) games, how we use them in the classroom and why James needs to change his mind. We'll also test your history of games with another timeline.

Duration: 00:43:53

Season 5 Episode 1: Staffrooms

We're back! In the first episode of the new season Lindsay and Shaun discuss many teachers second home - the staff room. They explore the role of the staffroom, what a typical staffroom looks like and some of their favourite staffroom activities. There is also a new castaway on the Dessert Island telling us about some of their favourite teaching resources.

Duration: 00:43:42

Season 4 Episode 6:Songs

In the second part of our discussion, Lindsay and Shaun talk about songs. They discuss everything from the songs people like to use in classroom through to issues such as copyright before ending with their favourite ELT song puns (did yours make our top ten?). In addition Ceri brings us one of her corners and Lindsay and Shaun have another 'fight'.

Duration: 00:37:51

Season 4 Episode 5 part 1:Music

In the first part of our look at the role of music and song in ELT, Lindsay and Shaun focus on music - that is to say tunes without lyrics. They talk about the role of classical music in suggestopedia and discuss how music can be used in the classroom. Along the way they make a confession or two about their past and enjoy a game of timeline.

Duration: 00:38:14

Season 4 Episode 4: Classroom 101

Do you have a pet teaching peeve? Is there a language point that really gets your goat? Which activity are you tired of doing in the class? In this episode we once more set up the virtual round table and persuade producer James and Corner maker Ceri to sit down to get things off their chest with Lindsay and Shaun. Listen and find out which things in EFL annoy us most.....

Duration: 00:41:42

Season 4 Episode 3:Schwa

In episode 3 Lindsay and Shaun are joined by Sinead Laffan to discuss how we approach the teaching of the Schwa. We explore everything from how it is dealt with in class, how it got its name and some of our favourite ideas for teaching it. Lindsay and Shaun also try and guess why Sinead has taken her love of the sound to a level most teacher's wouldn't go to.

Duration: 00:36:05

Season 4 Episode 2: Substitute

In episode 2, Lindsay and Shaun talks about the pains and pleasures of being a substitute teacher. Be it the one lesson cover or the professional stand-by teacher, we look at what it means, how hard it is and explore what things a substitute teacher should have in their toolbox. In addition James unravels some EFL terminology and the angelic Facebook phil brings us more words of wisdom.

Duration: 00:33:25

Season 4 Episode 1:First Lessons

TEFL commute is back and in the first episode of the new season Lindsay and Shaun talk about first classes and what is like to go back to school, all the things that need to be done and how we deal with a group of new students. We also introduce a new feature ' the tefl fight' and of course provide you with an activity you can try out this week in class.

Duration: 00:36:06

Season 3: The extra bits

We're still on a summer break but to ease your missing us pangs, we've put together this bonus episode with bits and pieces we had left over from season three. We've even let James have a microphone!

Duration: 00:18:18

Season 3 Episode 7: Punctuation

In this episode Shaun and Lindsay discuss punctuation. They discuss everything from oral punctuation through to trying to identify just what the semi-colon does. In addition they explore whether there is such a thing as a 'punctuation nazi' and whether or not punctuation is changing as a result of technology. You'll also find some Facebook wisdom, a voxpop punctuation quiz and of course another activity that you can use in your class.

Duration: 00:25:20

TEFL commute season 3 episode 6: Conferences

In this episode 6, Shaun and Lindsay talk ELT conferences. They discuss the first conferences they went to and spoke at, the benefit of going to conferences and their conference stories. Our audience members share their conference mishap stories and we also hear from lots of conference attendees who share their advice and their reasons for being at the recent IATEFL conference.

Duration: 00:49:58

Season 3 Episode 5: Versus

In this episode refreshed from his week off, Lindsay takes on Shaun in a battle of….no not really, but ‘inspired’ by this week’s big cinema release, they take a look at some of the ‘versus’ that exist in the profession. They discuss everything from Dogme to the NNESTS; TTT to Accuracy. On top of that Shaun takes a break from joke telling to bring an addition of ‘time line’ and the angels bring us another piece of Facebook philosophy.

Duration: 00:38:14

Season 3 Episode 4: Voice

In this episode, Ceri and Shaun talk all things voice. The voice is one of the main tools of the teacher but how well do you look after it? Do you warm it up? Should you really avoid coffee? Is a female voice preferred to a male voice? Ceri and Shaun discuss all these aspects and give you some tips for looking after your voice and ensuring it is ready for the day's teaching ahead.

Duration: 00:37:19

Season 3 Episode 2: Alphabet

In this episode Lindsay and Shaun discuss the alphabet. We consider how we got 26 letters and what happened to letters such as thorn and ampersand. We choose our favourite letters and some of our favourite techniques for dealing with the alphabet in the classroom. In addition we look at the pangrams and lipograms and James tries to decode nyms, phones and graphs for us. Finally, Shaun risks Lindsay’s future collaboration in the podcast by making him endure some alphabet related humour.

Duration: 00:30:53

Season 3 Episode 1: Invented Language

In the first episode of the new season Lindsay and Shaun talk invented languages. From Esparento to Dothraki, we look at the purpose of invented language and what we can learn from looking at how they work. We also discuss the rise of emoji, if it is impacting on language and how we might use it with students. A new series also brings a new game and of course an end of pod activity.

Duration: 00:37:37

Season 2 Episode 6: Gifts

In this episode Shaun and Lindsay attempt to meet up and talk about gifts. They discuss typical gifts that teachers receive and how we went from an apple to expensive watches. In addition Lindsay delights in corny thank you messages and Shaun brings you a seasonal timeline. The last episode of the season ends with a gift related classroom activity. See you next year.

Duration: 00:27:00

Season 2: Episode 5: Translate

In this episode Shaun and Lindsay discuss translation devices such a google translate and skype. They consider how effective they are and what the effect on language teaching maybe. They also pander a little to their inner sci-fi geek with a look at universal translators and even get Philip Kerr to come and talk about translation in language teaching. Throw in a bit of Facebook wisdom and an end of pod activity and you have another glorious episode of the TEFL commute.

Duration: 00:32:24

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