Why do pigs oink in English, boo boo in Japanese, and nöff-nöff in Swedish?

Why do pigs oink in English, boo boo in Japanese, and nöff-nöff in Swedish?

It’s not just pigs, the onomatopoeia we apply to most animal sounds varies delightfully across different tongues. What does this reveal about our relationship with language?

Read more @ theguardian.com http://gu.com/p/432h9


Picture Dictionary

Ideally I want my students to learn organically, like they learn their native language.  What do I mean by organically? I mean by exposure to real things and real situations. I don’t want to open a dictionary and tell them apple is яблоко. I want to show them a real, juicy apple and say “apple.” While this isn’t always possible, it is what I strive for.

An invaluable resource is a good picture dictionary. It should simply be a good picture representation and the English word next to it, without any translation. I have used several in the past including huge coffee table sized books, but I’ve yet to find a good one for sale in my local area. In the meantime I have a great website:

English Worksheets – http://www.englishwsheets.com/ I like that the vocabulary is divided by subject and they have many, many subjects.

Example: Daily Routine Pictionary Worksheet.

These sheets are great for creating lesson plans and they are standard sized so they are great for cutting up and turning into cards.

The can be used for games such as Memory, Hangman, Charades, Pictionary, and Concentration.

Bingo was his name-o

It seems most of my students are crazy about animals, dogs in particular.  Awesome, me too )

This is another classic American kids song.  The great thing about using these songs is they are not only good for teaching English, but also the culture that native speakers all have.  I’d be hard pressed to find an American who does not know this song.

Why is this song great?

✓ Animals – dogs are cute and awesome
✓ Thematic – continues the farm theme from Old MacDonald
✓ Spelling – B I N G O
✓ Actions – clap your hands, pat your head
✓ Commands – listen and follow along
✓ Versatile – can change the commands as you learn new actions

20 Questions

A game for more advanced students who can think critically and form basic and different questions.

I have a box of plastic foods such as fruits, meats and a box of plastic animals.

I have the student pick an item (just choose, not take) and then I ask them “yes” or “no” questions.  We both look in the box so the child can see their options (they may not know many English names for the items, but it helps when they can see them.)


Is it big? No

Is it red? Yes

Is it meat? No

Is it sweet? Yes

Is it a fruit? Yes

Is it a cherry? No

Is it an apple?  YES!

And if you really like this game, there’s a great program that claims to be able to guess anything within 20 questions.  I’ve spent a few hours trying to stump the computer http://www.20q.net/

This game goes well with I Spy

Old MacDonald had a Farm


This songs teaches the names of the animals on the farm and the English sounds they make.  Example: pigs go Oink! Oink!

We colored a fun farm scene with this lesson.

And now for a Simple Past Tense lesson:


носитель английского языка, американка, американец, американский, преподаватель, репетитор, учитель, частные уроки, занятия английским, дети, взрослые, иностранный язык, разговорный английский, бизнес английский, Краснодар, Россия, English as a second language, English as a foreign language, ESL, EFL, native English language, American, tutor, teacher, private lessons, children, adults, foreign language, conversational English, business English, Krasnodar, Russia