Thursday, October 21, 2010

Suspension of Service

Yes, I'm afraid to have to inform you that Sandy McManus has applied for leave to take early Winter hibernation, and shall be doing so with immediate effect. Fact is, there's far too many things going on in my life these days, and the mere thought of blogging obliges me to groan internally.

So I'll be lying very low, although I'll still be keeping an eye on things - just not allowing myself to pass the expected SM comment on the wild proceedings of one of the country's top industries, the Tefl Trade.

And don't forget to send in for my amusement those pearls of wisdom that pass for management in the UK Tefl scene. I'm going to need a fair bit of cheering up over the coming months!

Hast pronto, comrades!

PS: BTW, I've switched on the moderation facility for the comments. Got to keep that Windsor loony at bay!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Great TEFL Inventions

Sandy McManus is extremely proud to introduce a novel departure on The Tefl Tradesman - a critical look at new developments in the field of pedagogical hardware and technology. To those of my critics (apparently there are some) who feel I am an educational luddite, wholly unqualified to pass comment on any classroom contraption beyond a stick of chalk and the ever-present cat-o-nine-tails, I proudly say 'bollocks!'.

No. 1. The Communicative Chair
This comfortable item of classroom furniture has been designed exclusively with the communicative classroom in mind. Those rubber spikes bend and fold when the occupant first sits down, whilst inside them, the carefully concealed steel pins gradually release themselves on a timer mechanism. After ten short minutes, the occupant is forced to get up and do some pointless mingling activity, ask a spectacularly dumb information-gap type of question, or ask their class colleagues how many times they watch TV, eat ice-cream, and fall over drunk.

These essential items can also be used in the staffroom, to stop teachers from falling asleep, and as a means of preventing the homeless ones from adopting the teachers' room as their downtown residence. These seats are indeed extremely versatile, and no serious language school should be without one - or a couple of dozen.

No. 2. The Tefl Taser
This recent addition to the tools employed by the forces of law and order has now been adapted for use in the classroom, and is gradually replacing the electric cattle prod as a means of ensuring total classroom compliance. When students appear reluctant to participate in the teacher's favourite senseless activities and pointless games, a quick high-voltage blast from the Tefl Taser restores the party atmosphere and keeps them in the mood for more mingling! This most versatile of educational tools can also be used, when turned up to maximum, to incinerate students who cheat in tests or do anything that annoys the teacher. The DOS can also think of other interesting ways of using them too, no doubt!

These two modern tools of classroom management can, when used in tandem, provide the students with a rich learning environment. Can your school seriously do without them?