Bridget Jones and my New Year’s Resolutions – 2009
I have always loved the scene where Bridget Jones comes up with her famous 33 New Year’s Resolutions. What a great scene that was and I can’t remember how many nice lessons, by the way, I have watched with trainees using this clip to teach this or that, sometimes the future, sometimes just to generate talk and practise listening! Here is the book cover with some of Bridget’s resolutions, which can be used in a lead in with or without the video clip. There are many great lessons round this theme to be found on the web too. Here is one from the English Blog. The same post includes a great downloadable lesson from the Macmillan site and here is another one (which looks very much like a DELTA lesson plan) from http://www.developingteachers.com (a website well worth exploring). This last one brings Adrian Mole in, as well, a great combination for a theme-based lesson with a literary aim.
My own New Year’s Resolutions –not as much fun as Bridget’s…
Well, everyone seems to be making a list and this is my very first public one. A public list is a kind of commitment, but I am not all that sure that I can achieve all of my resolutions in just one year… Still, here they are:
- I have been moving things from my old DELTA website to a new DELTA wiki and this move seems to be lasting forever! I want to get this done within the first two months of 2010 at most! I want my wiki to be the best possible support tool for my candidates and am debating whether it might not be a good idea to make it open to everyone.
- I say this to myself every year, but I would like to be able to find the time, energy and motivation to put together some of my ideas in a book and get published! I have had books published before, albeit locally, and they were hugely successful but I would like to go for a major international publisher. Am waiting to be discoverd and am open to offers!
- In 2010 I would like to be able to organize my centre more efficiently so I don’t have to be there all the time and then I can accept some of the invitations to run teacher training courses and workshops in other countries! So far, it has been quite difficult to do although I have managed some projects – but not enough and this is something I have enjoyed doing and would like to be able to do more of.
- In the coming year I want to be able to restructure my courses and integrate new technologies into each one more efficiently than I have so far. Wiki-work is one way but there are other challenges and changes which I need to figure out so that I can draw in even those trainees who seem to be reluctant to be drawn in… and colleagues, too, for that matter!
- 2009 was my first contact with Second Life. Before the end of 2010, I want to be able to teach and train teachers in Second Life. So far, I have met some great people and made some wonderful friends, I have learnt a tiny, but very tiny, bit of building and editing objects, thanks to the SLexperiments weekly meetings but I need to take the plunge and do some teaching. I have this impression that quite a bit of the teaching that takes place in Second Life is accompanied by rather complicated and hard to prepare materials and I don’t think it should. I don’t think I should be preparing an extra super-duper thingie for a whole week to only use for one hour’s class. Surely, Second Life itself and all it offers IS the tool and the teaching aid itself, isn’t it? Well, I need to find out if I am wrong and early in the New Year, expect an invitation from me for an online class in Beginner Modern Greek. If the class consists of educators, we can turn it into a grand Negotiable Syllabus and Methodology Experiment. What do you think?
- In the coming year, I want to improve my online presentation skills. Presenting online is a new skill for me; I tried it once but wasn’t very happy with myself; it’s a new medium for me and although I am a very experienced speaker “live”, I need more practice for online work. My friends can prepare to suffer as I do intend to do something about it.
- One of the members of my PLN recently told me “My personal life is very quiet; my online life is much richer and much more exciting”. At the time, I thought that was a rather odd comment but now, I am beginning to find some truth in this too and wonder if this is not the right time for some stocktaking. It’s truly great to have all these online friends, but I must look after my offline friendships and relationships more. I may be going through some kind of initial phase which a media analyst could even put a name to (the addictive phase?) but I need to put the whole thing into perspective. This goes for my relationships with my trainees, too. I recently caught myself (luckily only once) telling a trainee “Well, can we do this through Skype?” when – in retrospect – all my trainee needed was some eye contact, sympathy and reassurance. Luckily I am always very suspicious of myself and my own motives, so I just need to watch out like a hawk!
- In 2010 I want to attend more conferences in person. Online conferences are great too and I want to do loads of them. But attending conferences in person gives you a wonderfully different buzz, listening to other people’s ideas and even looking at old ideas from a new angle is always a great energizer for and I want more of this!!! But more than anything, I am beginning to feel the need to meet the members of my PLN in person!
- I have not done any watercolour paintings recently, an art form which I have come to love. I need to find more time for this, I need to find more time for this…
- In the coming year, I want to learn more about art in Second Life and explore more Sims that showcase new types of art. I was recently taken to a couple of fabulous places by Karelia Kondor, who looks after Helen Myers in real life and I was totally blown away! That’s actually not such a big deal resolution and quite an easy one to achieve!
- Producing and putting together some music that I have written has always been a secret ambition. Whether I put it up on You Tube or perform it for my friends in Second Life, I don’t know…. but I can see this coming. Luckily, in Second Life all you can see is an avatar, so you are spared the pained expressions on your friends’ faces. This is a warning. When you receive that invitation, best stay away rather than suffer!
I am truly grateful to my readers for taking the time to follow this blog and post comments. Although I began it in some doubt and the first couple of months went by with me worrying what I should be writing next, it is beginning to come to me a bit more easily now (writing breeds writing and, sometimes, even good writing!)
And I wish all of you, passers by and members of my PLN, a most joyous time on this special New Year’s Eve and every success and personal and professional happiness you may have ever wished for!
How well did I do? If you are wondering have a look at my 2010 post: Merry Christmas to my PLN!
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