Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Rockin' with Rodent Language Holidays!

Well, there I was, a-rootin’ and a-rummagin’ amongst my old teaching stuff (notice I didn’t say ‘EFL stuff’ there – teaching is teaching, after all), when I came across a little piece of useful gear from the last ever summer school I did, many years ago. So naturally my first thought was to share it with you, dear reader(s).

Anyway, back then I worked for an outfit called Regent, a name that swiftly morphed into Rodent, as the boss was an exceptionally oily git called Alistair, a sort of underachieving privately-educated ultra-middle class twat with no ambition other than to lord it over us plebby Teflers and soothe his half-concealed inferiority complex. As for the DOS - ooh, it pains me to recall her twisted Ulster vowels and her natural ability to bring chaos wherever there was formerly harmony.

However, I'm digressing. What I have for you fortunate Tefl-twerps is a sort of ‘report generator’, one which helps teachers to write those irritating little student reports that most EFL schools appear to insist on, even for shorter-than-short Summer courses.

The thing is, you’re still expected to pen a few lines of blistering prose about, for example, Eduardo’s skill in handling abstract grammar notions, or his exemplary pronunciation of awkward consonant clusters - even if he is a snotty-nosed indolent little sprog that has only been in your class for a week. The reasoning behind such reports has never been clear, to my mind, but I do suspect it has something to do with the following.

Firstly, it satisfies the need for dear little Boris, for example, to be able to show his parents (who probably run half of some obscure Russian province in a vice-like grip of mafia-induced fear and brutality) that he wasn’t just intimidating the other darlings in the tuck-shop queue and laundering the family’s cash on ice-pops during his stay in England. It also serves as some sort of ‘pedagogical receipt’ for all the money his folks spent in sending the little terror away for a fortnight, and in effect means that they’re more likely to inflict him on you again the following year.

Anyway, my immediate thoughts were to chuck it, and send it the same way as my Concorde (the fastest swindlers in the business) baseball cap, the Rodent (sorry, Regent) pencil-case, and the undersized Churchill House sweatshirt. But then I thought, ‘hold on, this has some value to my half-dozen or so readers’ – especially the poor suckers who have signed themselves up for six weeks of torture at their local Summer school.

So, here it is, with just a few red herrings included included, just to keep you from falling asleep. It’s quite easy to use – just select the most appropriate sentence from each section, until you have a simple paragraph like the following example:

Victor has worked hard with a lot of enthusiasm and made good progress. He has also participated well in class activities, gaining much confidence, and is beginning to express himself more fluently. He is now at pre-intermediate level, and with further study should soon reach intermediate level. Well done Victor!

Rodent Language Holidays
Summer School Student Progress Reports
Teacher’s Comments

Comments on Participation and Progress

1. Andrea has worked hard and with enthusiasm during her stay with us, and has made good progress (in the boys' dormitories after lights).
2. Boris has worked well during his time at Rodent Language Holidays, participating enthusiastically in all classroom activities (and has excelled in violent sports).
3. Catherine has only been with us for a few weeks, but she is now able to communicate effectively in many situations (especially with her hands).
4. Daniel is a confident speaker of English, and communicates effectively at Intermediate level (as long as it's to do with porn).
5. Edith has a good general command of English, and is able to communicate in a wide range of everyday situations (especially shoplifting).
6. Georgy has participated well in all class activities, and has made great progress (in bullying the smaller kids).
7. Ines has worked hard with a lot of enthusiasm, and has made good progress (... in something). 8. Josef has enthusiastically participated in his activities, and has made the most of his time with us here at Rodent Language Holidays. (Shame he rarely stayed in class for more than five minutes, though).
9. Katya has been extremely popular with the boys, and has always given the most of herself.
10. The whole class has enjoyed Lena’s oral contributions, especially the extra-curricular ones.


1. She is confident at communication, and now has good all-round skills (she can swear in both oral and written form).
2. He is a confident speaker, and during the course has been able to build on his knowledge of grammar and vocabulary, and also develop his listening and writing skills (cocky little git).
3. He has worked hard during his time at Rodent Language Holidays to expand his knowledge of grammar and vocabulary, and also develop his speaking and listening skills (and has no mates, little swot).
4. She speaks accurately and uses a wide range of appropriate vocabulary (e.g., 'fuck off', 'piss off' etc...).
5. She has a sound passive knowledge of the English language (and never said a word the whole fortnight).
6. He communicates well and is able to express himself clearly in most situations (especially with his fists and boots).
7. He is a confident communicator, always makes himself understood, and is able to follow native-speaker speech fully (shame about the body-odour, though).
8. She has gained in confidence, now has a good knowledge of English, and is beginning to express herself more fluently (especially when she wants a shag).
9. Her speaking is fluent, her pronunciation excellent, and her vocabulary is wide-ranging (so why the fuck did you send her?).
10. Apart from her bad breath, she has been a pleasure to teach.

Areas to Work on

1. At times she is grammatically inaccurate, and also needs to work on her pronunciation and vocabulary (OK, she's a dead loss really...).
2. He now needs further reading and writing practice (so tie him to a chair).
3. She should now concentrate on deepening her knowledge of vocabulary and grammar, as these are her main weaknesses (her other weaknesses are also deep, but how much space do I have?).
4. He sometimes lacks confidence during listening and/or speaking activities (and needs more shouting at).
5. She now needs more practice to consolidate and extend her knowledge of the language (which is abysmally small).
6. He now needs to work on his pronunciation and extend his vocabulary (beyond monosyllabic grunts).
7. With further studies and practice, he should continue to make good progress (given another 25 years).
8. He is an idle tosser, a total waste of space, and should not bother returning next year

Good Wishes

1. I/We wish him/her all the best for the future.
2. I/We wish him/her well.
3. I/We wish him/her luck for the future.
4. I/We would like to wish him/her very well for the future.
5. I/We wish him/her all the best for his/her future studies.
6. I/We sincerely hope that he/she will never return to this school again.
7. I/We sincerely hope that you, as his/her parents, feel sufficient remorse for having raised such a loathsome spoilt bastard!
8. Please ensure this odious little cunt never comes back this way again!

Useful, eh? Now don't say I never have anything useful to say (again)!


Anonymous said...

hey it could be worse matey, really worse. One could always teach in KSA or better, be an addicted alkie/EFL teacher in S-h-a-r-j-a^h!


The TEFL Tradesman said...

Ooh, you cheeky little git! But you're right - Sharjah or Saudi are the prime destinations for the EFL teacher in dry-out mode. That's why I don't live there (hic!!)

Anonymous said...

Yeah that's right mate - his parents are Russian so they must be in the mafia! Just like my Colombian wife's a drug dealer yeah? Are you sure you're worth eight pound an hour? Would you like me to show you where the button on the photocopier is?

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Oh come on, Anon (above) - lighten up a bit! Anyway, I know where the photocopy button is - one of my students showed me.

Anonymous said...

This is a place of great fiction, well fact really. Go find a tranny English teacher with a drinking & drug problem who lives in lower-cost S-h-a-r£-j*-ah and commutes over the border.

You could dress her up as Minnie Mouse and take a tour on the new monorail out to the... is ot 6 or 7 stars now really?...

Anonymous said...

and more intl news, from south of eden, i mean big dry county. search that new special place.

Anonymous said...

Yes, a right couple of very pertinent and entertaining comments we have there... I think (?)...

Is there nobody out there with something useful to say? OR even useless, but not as opaque as the rubbish directly above?

Anonymous said...

OK Oliver, obviously not. HAHA.

OK, search the name of the new luxury island with the famous museums and the city name. Scandal splashed over UK and US media, but more of the same really... more to come with press conference in Paris.

If you weren't drunk all the time, maybe you could figure this out?

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Yes, but, erm ... just what is your point, dear Anon? Are you trying to be some sort of 'stalking-horse', or are you just a prat? Or perhaps both?

Get to the point, man!

ikon said...

If you think Rodent are bad, check this out from The Times:

"With its humble setting, the building might seem an unlikely nerve centre for an elaborate, multimillion-pound fraud that made a mockery of UK immigration policy.

In the rush hour, cars crawl south from the centre of Manchester along Stockport Road past line after cramped line of Asian retail outlets, some less grubby than others.

Among the fast-food shops, Haj travel agents, halal butchers, curry houses and money-exchange outlets is a former pub, reborn in 2006 as Manchester College of Professional Studies.

Here, two young men from a town in North West Frontier Province (NWFP) in Pakistan — in Britain on student visas — started a scam that would earn them a small fortune.

Related Links
Sham colleges open doors to terror suspects
Forger gave himself fake degrees
Bogus college owner linked to Pakistan murders
The Times has evidence that in 15 months from October 2006 they enrolled 1,143 foreign students, most Pakistanis, and sold bogus college qualifications to enable another 654 to extend their stay in the UK.

With each student making average payments to the college totalling at least £1,000 — in many cases it was far more — those running the operation are thought to have banked almost £2 million in less than two years."


These jokers run the Bradford College of Professional Studies who were advertising ESOL tutor vacancies paying 6 pound an hour.

Anonymous said...


The TEFL Tradesman said...

And just who, or what, the fuck is LASH?! Is it some sort of coded comment directed at your humble Tefl Tradesman? If so, kindly decode it for me, as I'm not the most able of people when it comes to puzzles.

LASH! ... indeed!

Anonymous said...


It's the A-l W-a-t£-hwa treatment... cracking whip... minus dominitrix stiletto boots!


The TEFL Tradesman said...

Ah, well that's all cleared up then. As clear as mud in fact. Shame about the dominatrix stilletoes, though. Couldn't we replace them with camel hooves, or something t(r)opical, eh?

Shaun Ryder said...

Fookin', fookin' tits. Ole Shaunie weren't so bad after all.

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Yeah, we need yer back, Shaunie! Where've yer bin - rehab again?!

Anonymous said...

Dipped into boiling Findlandia, leather whip comes down on Shaun's lily white, northern arse...


Wendy O said...

Shaun and Sandy,


Shaun Ryder said...

Aye, I've bin in re'ab. Iss bollocks really. No-one ever says 'ere: the reason people like skoonk an' Stella an' that is cos it's nice. No-one ever talks about that-iss all about 'ow bad it is. What coonts.
A bit like this new lot you've gorrin San', seem like a right fookin' shower. Carnt you 'ave a cull?

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Eat you, Wendy? The smell of your corrupted flesh would make me gag! That and the grease and oil, oozing from your putrescent (?) pores...

Shaunie would love the chance, though - but he'd probably need to wash you down with something suitably cheap, such as Watney's Red.

Wendy O said...

FUCK YOU crotch rot Sandy!

You are a SHIT STAIN on the panties of life!

I spit out pretty boys like you for LUNCH!

Wen said...

I watch your pretty little BLOG since YOU put your pin-up of ME up.


There's a new BITCH in town boys!

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Hardly a 'bitch', though - more of an aged witch, I'd say!

I bet you can't even take it up the shitter anymore, like you used to, eh?! I bet it's all missionary position stuff and 'I must have my cup of cocoa by ten o'clock' now, eh, you old bag!!

Oh, how the mighty are fallen. Would you like me to introduce you to Paul Lowe?!

Wendy O said...




Shaun Ryder said...

Whass the IP on Wendy then San'? I reckon I recognise that crappy style.

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Recognise it? Of course you do - it's you, Shaunie! How's the bipolaroid king getting on these days - I hear you're living in Telford these days, right?

Al W'a%thwa welcome staff said...

Wendy, how about 2 million for a concert? Hey babe?

Anonymous said...

Dear TT, Thanks for your useful phrases. I might perhaps not use all of them, but I'm sure you'd understand, unlike some of your contributors. As they say here where I live.. not "madrelingua"..., and perhaps they've been living in obscure dry places for far too long. I shall raise a glass to you, in a sec, when I've refilled it.:-)

Big S

The TEFL Tradesman said...

Big S - I like you! Your presence pleases me- who are you, though?! Please keep coming back, your messages are a whiff of sweet sanity amongst these pages full of fruitcakes and jelly-beans...