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News and views

  • How much should teachers grade their language in class?
  • Is teaching the etymology of words and phrases useful?

Exercise of the month

Suffix tennis

This exercise is excellent for higher level classes revising prefixes and suffixes and would appeal greatly to more competitive classes.

  1. Divide your class into two teams, A and B.
  2. Choose a prefix or suffix and ask Team A to ‘serve’ by attaching the chosen suffix (or prefix) to a word.
  3. Team B then has to ‘return’ by attaching the same suffix (or prefix) to a new word.
  4. Go back and forth with new words until one team can’t think of a word. The other team gets a point.
  5. The game is scored like tennis, and the winning team is the team with most points at the end of the game

For bonus points, you could ask teams to spell out the words they have chosen.

Word of the month

Activating schema:  A concept that revolves around accessing individual learners’ prior knowledge of the information being learned, usually in the form of a warmer to engage students in the topic of a lesson.


Debra Marsh talks about the fundamentals of professional development, the flipped classroom and course design.


  1. Which should be prioritised – achieving the lesson aims or achieving students’ emerging aims?
  2. What would you like to experiment with in your teaching practice? Something that you’ve never had the courage/insanity for.


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