Saturday, April 24, 2010

EDU 3234 TESL Cohort 4: Journals and position papers

Hi guys,

I'm pleased with (most of) the journals produced for this assignment. You understood the requirements of the assignment well and did not just give me the accounts of what happened in class. There were a lot of effort and writing talent shown in the entries. I finished reading everything in one night the day i got the journals. Yesterday i put grades on them. This is how they were graded:

This assignment is worth 15 marks.

For all the 15 entries you joyfully (or painfully) came up with 7.5 marks is awarded (half a mark each)

The rest of the marks depends on depth of reflection & MEANINGFUL creativity.

The journals will be returned to you with comments (hopefully) and i hope to find someone from C4 who can drive the assignments back to JB. All the other assignments will be returned too.


After the successful viva sessions, you were asked to write on the position you defended.

The position paper is a continuous essay, rather than a piece of writing with sections (not like the research paper). The format given is a guidance of how i want the flow of the writing to go i.e. Introduction, the three points (some of you have included the counter arguments in the essay which is good to strengthen your argument), the conclusion. The tone of writing should be persuasive and confident.

This is how the 20 marks are divided:

Position- 3

(most got 3 but some didnt heed to what a position should sound like. a position cannot sound flimsy. it must sound confident and unafraid)

Points and argument- 7

(how the three points are presented and argued. if i cant find the three points because you have very "cleverly" not use the sequence markers or linkers then that'll be hard. never think people can read your mind)

Format- 2

(if you follow this then it's easy for me to see where you're going)

Evidences- 4

(an argument should be backed up by quotes from relevant sources)

Expression- 4

(to me this is what makes all of the above work. if you write with minimal errors and good language, then it is easy for me to see your points and argument and give you 6 or 7 points)

I guess both these exercises (position paper and viva) should give you an inkling of what to expect in the post-graduate level of studies (but the examiners won't be as cruel as your classmates)

Research paper:

Just bear in mind that, basically the judgment of your supervisors are correct. It's just that an excellent paper (34/40) from supervisor A would mean differently from an excellent paper that was graded by supervisor B (39/40). I just hope you have gained some valuable experience from the supervisors' ways of supervising and their comments. Also this should make you understand that at the postgraduate level of studies a lot of factors come into play i.e. your level of effort, your supervisor's level of expectation, the chemistry between you and your supervisor and a bit of luck.

In class tasks:

I use to give away 20 marks as long as my past students did what they have to do in class. But this semester it will not be that simple. I will base it on attitude and what i observe in class for the presentations.

It shouldn't be difficult to get an A for this class to make your exam transcript look nice. But i also hope you have gained good things from the course that could be used for your personal development and your teaching. Remember that while it is good to get A's, it is your passion and your good heart that are going to make you happy in this profession.

All the best people.

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Teaching the Language of Drama: Entry One

Happy New Year to all and welcome to another gruelling semester. Work hard and do have fun at the same time. The results for the short story course last semester was not too bad, but I hope you will ALL aim for an A this time around. You can do this by maintaining or improving the quality of work from what you produced the last time.

To start off our blog response exercise, I am interested to find out how much knowledge of drama you already have.

Please list literary texts from the drama genre that:

1. you have read. Were they read for leisure or for course requirements?

2. you have seen. Were they performed on stage or were they adapted for the film?

3. you have heard of but have not yet read.

Please DO NOT FORGET to write your name and matric number when you respond.

Please respond by WEDNESDAY 6th January 2010
(so we can discuss this during Thursday's tutorial).

Thank you.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Fifth and final entry!

Hello everyone!

Very very interesting responses on Paul's Case! Well done! You have made a lot of good points on how society has had a hand in Paul's misery and also many have claimed that Paul's miserable life is his own responsibility! Double interesting to note that majority of those not in favour of Paul come from the LHE group. I am just wondering if i had presented Paul in a-too-negative way for them to cause such responses. But anyway, great job everyone!

Now for the last entry, please respond to the question below:

"How would your future students benefit from any of the short stories you have learnt? Name the text and describe how it can teach them lessons about life."

Deadline: 18 October 2009

I'll be putting up your marks on the eSMP right after the deadline!

All the best for your finals!

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Do you love or hate Paul?

Hello everyone!

After a few weeks of discussing Paul's Case, it'd be interesting to know what you personally think of this character.

In not less than 50 words, respond to the question below:

"Do you sympathise with Paul? Give reasons."

Deadline is on the 11th of October 2009.

Good luck!


Sunday, September 6, 2009

EDU 3214/LHE 3250 Topic Three

Well done to those who have managed to write comments on the previous entry by 6th September 2009.

This week's entry will be on persona poem. You have done it in class the other day and i thought those who read out their poems did rather well.


1. Choose a character from a short story that you have done. (It'll be helpful if you state the character and the story he/she/it is from before you begin the poem, just incase some of us may not be familiar with the character you are talking about!)

2. In the comment box below, write a persona poem about that particular character (as you have done in class the other day).

3. DO NOT forget to write your name and matric number everytime you post a comment.

4. Please have this done by 13th September 2009

Thank you.

Below is one of the many uses of this activity. I hope you can benefit from the notes:

Persona Poems
Level of proficiency: Intermediate to Advance
Description of poem: A structured 8-line poem, biographical in nature

Warm-up activity

Persona-poems make a good ice-breaking activity when students are just getting acquainted with each other at the start of the term. As a starting point to the activity, students bring in mementos that are self-representative i.e. photos, pictures from magazines, personal drawings. Students get to know each other when they explain the mementos to their partners or other members of the group

Instructions to the activity

1. In small groups or together as a class, look at the example poem about and discuss the structure of the eight lines. What parts of speech or groupings of words typify each line?

2. Using the template provided, students can work alone and write about themselves, or work in pairs and write about their partners.

Sample Analysis of a Persona-Poem

Line 1: first name/nickname of the person in the poem
Line 2: 4 adjectives which describe the person
Line 3: X of Y formula, describing an important relationship to the person
Line 4: 3 things s/he loves
Line 5: 3 things that scare her/him or 3 things that he/she dislikes
Line 6: 3 things s/he wants to see
Line 7: resident of...+ place/time/concept
Line 8: last name of the person in the poem (or the full name of the person as some people do not have last names)

(justify right, center or left for different effects)
_________________ .....(first name/s) ____________, ____________, _____________, ____________ ____________ of ____________ who loves ____________, ____________ and ____________ who is afraid of ____________, ____________ and ____________ who wants to see ____________, ____________ and ____________ resident of ____________ ..... ________________. (last name)

Sample of a persona poem

Sri Rahayu
Smart, kind-hearted, accepting and generous
A friend of mine
Who loves photography, music and the telly
Who detests crowded London tubes, disrespectful beings and the insincere ones too
Who wants to see autumn leaves drifting, snowflakes falling and the beautiful sun setting
Resident of the heart of many
Sri Rahayu Zainuddin

Adapted from:
Leslie Opp-Beckman, Technology Coordinator and ESL Instructor E-mail: 5212 University of Oregon, American English Institute Eugene, Oregon 97403-5212 USA Leslie Opp-Beckman and June White, copyright 1995-2003. Permission to copy and distribute for in-class, non-profit use only. URL: This page last updated: 13 August 2003

Monday, August 31, 2009

EDU 3214/LHE 3250 Topic Two

Well done guys! I'm very happy with the response for topic one. There are a lot of well-expressed comments which I am very glad to read.

Now we will go to Topic Two. Please respond using the experience you have had so far reading literary texts.


Symbolism is sometimes central in a story. It can appear in the title of the story, or in a form of an object in the story, or through names of characters. Settings can be symbolic too. In NOT LESS than 50 words, share with us your experience with the use of symbols in anything at all that you have read. Can the story do without the use of that particular symbol?

Please have your response written in the comment box BY Sunday the 6th of September 2009.

I look forward to reading your responses.

Good luck!


Tuesday, August 11, 2009

EDU 3214 / LHE 3250 Forum Topic One

This is the online forum for the EDU 3214 and LHE 3250 group. I've actually opened a forum at but it is too mind boggling for me to administer the forum there at the moment. We'll make it simple and do it on this blog.

Read the instructions below:

1. The topic that you will comment on is:

State which element of literature you found interesting when reading a short story. Why do you say so?

2. Go to the end of this entry page and click on the comment button

3. In not less that 50 words, respond to the topic set.

3. It is IMPORTANT that you include your name and matric number in your comment.

4. Please have this done by 23 August 2009.

Thank you.


Please take note:

14 August 2009

It seems that you all need to create a google account at and sign in before you can post a comment.

1.Go to

2.Register for a google account, get an i.d. and a password and sign in

3.Go to the blog, click on the comment link and write your comments

4.Then select profile i.e. google

5.Then click on "post comment"