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Online and in-class TESOL TEFL Certification

Your TEFL now in Barcelona too!

At Anglo Centres TEFL we have exciting news for you:

From now on the 4-Week TEFL and Combined TEFL course can be taken in the vibrant city of Barcelona – Spain’s most cosmopolitan city.

Therefore our TEFL students will now be able to choose between our main teacher training centre in Tarragona and our new associate Barcelona centre.

The Barcelona school is located in the heart of the city at less than five minutes’ walking distance from Gaudi’s world-famous Sagrada Familia – a second-to-none location.

Thus, by offering a wider choice of location we hope to cater to our students’ diverse needs.


What should I pack for my TEFL?

Top 10 things to pack for your TEFL course

A frequently-asked question by those about to embark on a residential TEFL or TESOL course abroad is what they should put in their suitcases. Here is a checklist of things (in no particular order) that may come in handy at some stage of your TEFL adventure.

1)      A laptop, Netbook, tablet or small-size portable computer – Even though your TEFL school is likely to be equipped with personal computers accessible to trainees, such access will not be unlimited. An intensive residential TEFL course involves a good deal of written work (e.g. lesson plans, essays, worksheets and extra materials for your lessons…) and there may be times when computers are not available. Being able to continue work in your room after class or over the weekend will make you more independent, which in turn can only have a positive effect on your studies.

2)      Plug adapters – These will come in handy when travelling to a country which uses different electrical sockets to the ones in use in your own country. The internet is full of useful information on the type of adapter you need for each country. Check also if you will need an electrical or voltage converter for your appliances.

3)      Pictures and objects that remind you of home – They will help you overcome those moments when you feel homesick. Besides, you can find a more practical application for them and use them to personalize your lessons; students are generally very interested in learning about their teachers’ personal lives, their home countries and their cultures.  Personal objects will help engage your students and add a more humanistic dimension to your teaching, which again, can have a very positive impact on your performance as a training teacher.
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The Mother Tongue in the Classroom (2)

In this second article our Head of Teacher Training, Vince Ferrer, reflects on the use of the mother tongue to promote noticing and how translation may be a classroom aid to scaffold learner language.

With the emergence of research into the role of form-focused instruction, teacher-researchers have begun to acknowledge the mother tongue as a legitimate tool with the potential to facilitate learning mainly in accuracy-based tasks. This article reports on the findings from a comparative study of teachers’, teacher educators’ and students’ perceptions carried out in Spain. The participants give their views on the desirability of, at times, providing learners with the English translation of what they are trying and finding difficult to say as a way of scaffolding or aiding their output. Results suggest that such scaffolding may be conducive to noticing on the part of the learners of the gap existing between their current inner grammar and the target grammar.


 The mother tongue in Second Language Acquisition has taken different swings depending on which theoretical framework was in vogue at any one particular time. While direct methods in the first half of the twentieth century saw no place whatsoever for the first language (L1) in the classroom, the grammar-translation method used the mother tongue so extensively and at the expense of target language (L2) practice that, even today, translation is in many
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Down to One Word (Text Reduction)

Paragraph reduction – A fun way of focusing students on sentence and paragraph formation.

Level: Pre-intermediate upwards

Time: 10-20 minutes

Language Focus: Past simple; sentence and paragraph structure

Aim: Students take turns and remove words from a paragraph until there is only one word left.

Here’s the procedure:

1)      Write a sample sentence on the board:

“Paul and John wrote very beautiful songs when they were good friends and worked together”.

2)      Allow students a few seconds to read the sentence. Then, erase one word from the sentence (the resulting sentence needs to be grammatical and meaningful):

For example:

“Paul and John wrote very beautiful songs when they were good friends and worked together”.
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Grammar Casino


Level: All

Time: Depends on  the number of sentences.

Language Focus: Any grammar structure.

Are your students tired of dry grammar practice exercises?

The Grammar Casino game can be a good way for your students to practice new and old grammar in an enjoyable way.

Here is how it works:
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Best TEFL courses – What to look for.

The Top 15 things you need to know before booking your TEFL program.

What are the best TEFL courses?
Which one of the plethora of TEFL programs currently on the market should I enroll on?

These are very frequently-asked questions in online forums by anyone who is new to the world of TEFL and wants to get certified to make a living teaching English abroad or in their own country.

A career in TEFL is a very big step and thus your choice of program can largely determine the quality of the options available to you once you have graduated as a TEFL teacher.

If you would like to both feel prepared and confident to teach English as a Foreign Language and be in possession an internationally-recognized qualification that will open doors to the best TEFL jobs here are some important details you should consider when ‘shopping around’ for a TEFL course:

1.       Is the course externally accredited?

There are literally hundreds of schools offering TEFL courses these days. Some are legitimate and some are not. Some offer courses leading to internationally-accredited TEFL qualifications and some just sell you a piece of paper saying you are certified to teach English.
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Five-Minute Activities is a teacher resource book containing over 130 short activities for the language classroom which work great as warmers and lesson finishers but which can also be adapted and extended to fill in a communicative slot in a lesson.

Below is one of the activities you will find in this must-have resource book.

Activity: EVIDENCE

Type of activity: Information-gap

Language Focus: Use of modal verbs ‘can’ and ‘must’ to express logical necessity.

Procedure: Two students stand with their backs to the board: they are the ‘detectives’. You write up a brief situation (see below for a few examples). The rest of the class are witnesses and suggest, orally, concrete evidence (sounds, sights, smells, etc) for the existence of the situation, without mentioning the situation itself. The detectives have to deduce it from the evidence.

For example, the situation is: “The school must be on fire”, the witnesses might say:
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The Alibi Game

Level: Pre-intermediate upward.

Time: 50-60 minutes.

Language Focus: Past Simple and Past Continuous questions.

The Alibi Game has become a classic role-play for practicing Past Simple and Past Continuous question forming. Although this task is extremely popular and well-known we find there are still plenty of teachers out there who have not heard of it. Thus, we have decided to offer our own version of this engaging and fun-to-do activity. This is the way we play it:
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The Mother Tongue in the Classroom (1)

In the first of two articles, Vince Ferrer, our head of Teacher Training, reflects on the merits of ESL / ESOL teachers knowing their learners’ first language and putting it to good use in the classroom.


The role of the mother tongue in instructed second language acquisition/learning has been the subject of much debate and controversy. This article reports on a piece of research carried out with learners of English as a foreign language and presents a comparative study of students’, teachers’ and teacher educators’ perceptions regarding the adequacy of cross-linguistic grammatical comparisons in the monolingual classroom. Results suggest that a judicious and systematic use of cross-linguistic referencing may present the teacher with opportunities for equipping the learners with explicit knowledge of the target language systems. This in turn may help students to notice the gap between the state of their inner grammars and the target language and ultimately aid acquisition. 


Throughout much of the history of research into second language acquisition (SLA), the role of learners’ first language (L1) has been a hotly debated issue. Prodromou (2000) refers to the mother tongue as a ‘skeleton in the closet’, while Gabrielatos (2001) calls it a ‘bone of contention’. Such views are but a mere reflection of the different methodological shifts in English Language Teaching, which have brought about new and different outlooks on the role of the mother tongue.

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Everyone loves jokes. They can be an invaluable source of entertainment and an excellent vehicle for presenting language in context and promoting genuine communication while having a laugh. As follows, we describe some useful techniques for exploiting jokes in class. Next, a number of TEFL-appropriate jokes are included and sorted by level.



               WHY USE JOKES IN CLASS:


  •   Just say the word ‘joke’ and they’re ready to listen
  •   To motivate students to listen, read, write …
  •   Can be a gateway to understanding new cultures
  •   To create a relaxed learning atmosphere
  •   They provide exposure to authentic language and genuine communication
  •   Students learn without realising
  •   As a vehicle for language study (many jokes are rule-governed)
  •   To break the ice or liven up a dull moment
  •   For fun. Everyone loves jokes!!



  1. Prediction. Leave the punch line out and get students to predict it. You can have this as a race too.
  2. Leave out the punch line and provide a choice of possible punch lines to choose from. You can also have this as a race.
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