Page 1

Dear reader,

Editor’s note

Hope you have had a magnificent summer. Mine was filled with new adventures, new findings of myself and the world around me, and plenty of quiet moments when I was able to ponder on the things that matter to me the most. Have you ever felt a strange sense of chaos within yourself? That sensation of being lost because you've stepped offtrack. I can see you nodding. Most of us have been there, haven't we? So this issue has been inspired by one of my students who also happens to be our new Hope Hero (page 42). Sissy Ma, aged 11, has taught me that even in moments of turmoil, you should always look for the light within and within the people around you. One of my heroes is the great Oprah Winfrey. What I have learned from her is that no matter where you come from, a black American neighbourhood or a small eastern European country; you still have the power to make the world a better place. So grow into your own power, believe in it and let your inner light sparkle bright as a star, because you are a Being made from Stardust, who has come here to shine.



Finally, Neale Donald Walsch says that "someone is looking up to you now, preparing to follow your example. Let this guide your next choice". Have an inspiring new school year!



06 The light from within 08 Maths as a key to freedom 12 An interview with Gavin McCormack 16 EdYOUfest 20 Spice up your English class 25 Reclaim your joy in teaching 29 How would you change the world 32 I am 36 Pretty ugly 37 Back to school activities 42 Hope Hero 44 Shine your light 47 Happy Note 49 Easy English 56 Crossword 57 Kids' corner 58 Fun with English 4

Sandra Teresa Szczepanski I think we should play to our strengths but it's important to know our weaknesses.

Vani Nair I think, "Playing on one's strength as well as, working to improve one's weakness to a better wholesome advantage".

Anjana Sharma To focus on our weakness coz what we can do perfectly wll be a habit...but by overcoming our weakness we can do things in a better way.

Maru Lara The only way to improve ourselves is focusing on our weakness because they are an opportunity to self correct, change and learn. Awareness of your mistakes,lack of knowledge or skills’gaps is a must when trying to develop and grow!

Our Star Reader

If you want to have your views published in “Inspirational English”, answer our next issue's question:

If you could go back in time, what would you change in your teaching practice? Send your answer to: info@englishwithrussie.co.uk 5


reat minds, respected thinkers as well as writers and musicians have, down the ages, related to the light from within, and in recent times there has been a great awakening in this area of thinking which is now moving purposely towards being an integral part of the human experience. We know the word ‘light’ in so many different contexts, switching on the electric light when it gets dark being the most common. When we are feeling down and share our troubles with a good friend or family member we thank them for lightening the load. When we are able to lose a little weight we say we are happy to be feeling lighter. When the sky is full of clouds then they pass we are happy when it becomes light again. All of those examples relate to light outside of us and are of course extremely important to our day to day lives.

So what is this light from within all about? Let’s go back to the first example above and see what relationship, if any, it has with the light from within. Thomas Edison dedicated a large portion of his life to creating the light bulb and it could be argued that he was simply seeking personal gain through such an amazing invention. But what if he were to have been driven by the desire to make people’s lives better by being able to see more clearly and not have to live in darkness so much. If this were to be why Thomas Edison was driven to create the light bulb then that would be a perfect example of the light from within. The modern world has long since set precedence on the self, made profiteering the norm, and the corporate machine has designed a world encompassing formula that has become so far removed from the light from within that unless we listen to our inner selves an awful lot more the decimation of humankind can be the only result. 6

Continued from previous page

Apologies for the darkness of that last paragraph, but as a writer I find that the most effective way for me to stay in contact my inner self is to always be aware of the other side of the coin, as by doing so I am able to recognise the importance, and the need, to share the knowledge of something as vital as the light from within. Like so many of us, most of us, I have demons I need to deal with along the way. When you have lived a life, depending on its complexity, the chances are there will be times when finding your inner strength will be called upon. As I flick through the last couple of months of my life for example I am able to track on to 3 or 4 moments that without friendship and self determination to bring everything back into line, my light from within would have dimmed enough for me to perhaps even be struggling to write what I am now writing. Never at any time will you be able to say ‘that’s my life in perfect balance and I can slip into cruise control and ease through each day whistling a happy tune.’ Having said that if you were to be able whistle a happy tune even although it is the last thing you felt like doing, this would be because you are tapping into an inner strength that has the power to alter the direction your life is taking for the good. Reaching out to others is another important member of the light from within family, a greater mind than I declared that there is no greater feeling than the one you get when you help another human being, or indeed any creature. When you do this for no personal gain, when it is driven purely by the desire to help another, its success is totally and absolutely based on the clarity and strength of your light from within.

Peter Taylor Columnist, song-writer and playwright


By Deshka Petrova Every person is born special, carries his/her extraordinary abilities, interests, appearances, loads, emotions and manifestations. Believe it or not - the human being is the greatest treasure on Earth, its greatest gem. Child or child - You are also a human! From a bird's eye view (schematic), our lives generally go through several stages: birth - childhood growth (school, university) - maturation (work, family, childcare) - old age - death. This, however, is the picture, looked statistically and passively - statistically, from the point of view of the predominant stereotypes of habitation; - passively, due to the inclination of some people to submit to these statistics, to the above-mentioned scheme of a human animal. From this, a few questions could follow: 1. What kind of person am I - What are my "specialties" - talents, abilities, interests, appearances, loads, emotions, manifestations, aspirations? 2. How do I want to live my life? 3. Do I want to be more than I think I am? 4. ..... (in your opinion, what other questions can we ask) It is important to play the game of formulating questions because we cannot answer a non-existent question! From our activity and initiatives, from our pursuit of a certain purpose, both our questions and their answers depend on many things, and the result of this "elementary" process could be a human life, the quality of a lifetime of life!

Where is the place of mathematics here in all this philosophy? Why are we studying for so long this discipline with all its aspects, given that we have the super-modern tools and technologies that replace the human brain more often than not in the whole field of mathematical science? Nowadays, in an essential part of the manufacturing process, computers and robots successfully work, instead of people. Yet, we are banging our heads with formulas and drawings, memorising axioms that we learn to prove theorems. Why do we need this and what does it have to do with the opportunity to live our lives with pleasure, in a way chosen by us, according to our own ideas and plans for happiness, success and values? 8

Do you agree that every "thing" happened was first an idea in one's beautiful garment, then creates a fabric, and several pieces sewn (apart from protecting us otherwise) contributes state - gives us self-esteem analogous example is the on. It sounds simple. with you. Depending on (sophisticated talent), and communicate - to say - I am ideas, to persuade others to dreams and targets ...).

before seeing the world before it head? A designer invents the pattern that was applied on the together form clothing, which from nakedness, cold or significantly to our emotional or deprives us of it. An production of a Ferrari and so Whatever you think, it will stay your dream, talent, qualification realisation (ability to the one and I can do it - to create follow you on your way to your

As it became clear - the beginning of every "thing" puts forward an idea. Therefore - it's about thinking. Thinking Activity, as a process is mainly going on in our brain. It is good to pay attention to the word process, because our brain never stops functioning. Most of the time it works (thinks), even in the cases where we think we are not thinking, the biochemistry of thinking continues to take place - impulses flow, form chains, and generate thoughts. From the whole tangle of words, it is important to realise that besides thinking (thoughts are produced -it does not matter if we do it or our brain does!), the quality of this “thought process” is also important - how do we think, at what rate, what kind of resource cost? Here is where our mathematics comes. Paradox? No! It is believed that through the study and practice of mathematical disciplines, the so-called " logical circuits are formed in the human brain. The logical chain represents the pathway of neuronal interactions in the brain, which is created and strengthened by exploring and consistently exercising knowledge (learning a new lesson and solving all the tasks in the collection of the section). This creates a durable path - a logical chain that then serves us absolutely free and automatically as a channel for knowledge transfer, solutions, and innovative ideas. For trained brains, these chains represent networks with innumerable branches and interconnections. The number of branching and interconnections determines the quality and speed of thinking. The intelligent approach in an area of life implies not knowing and remembering everything in this area, but being able to quickly and easily serve all and any sources of experience and information so that you can achieve what you are up to. It is the well-groomed brain that shows the speed and flexibility (helpful brain) in solving a specific life situation. We can practically visualize the advantage of the developed brain with the advantage of having all the available roads (including "direct paths") in the map of a city. Whilst some people will reach from A to B through a limited number of elementary roads, the

“We can practically visualize the advantage of the developed brain with the advantage of having all the available roads (including "direct paths") in the map of a city.” 9

trained ones - those who have the extra paths available will benefit optimally from their brains - they will arrive, at times much faster , with much lower fuel consumption and will gain a significant lead. If we designate the number and density of our logical chains, remember - the architect is you, and the means, the founding machine, the translator of your paths is mathematics, in a relatively fascinating and painless way. I believe you will agree that you do not need to hit your head ten times on the wall to remember it's not only hard, but it hurts and the hurt is hurt; you do not have to fail after a failure (whether business or personal) to master the art of raising your own intelligence. Once pushed, these paths in the brain never disappear - they are always available as long as you do not allow them to rummage with the weeds of lightness. As you strive for something, no matter what it is, your brain, with its information delivery paths, original thoughts, solutions, discoveries and motivations will serve you faithfully and faultlessly. Even when you are lazy, with a little effort (exercise) you will return to the previous perfect "settings". Additionally, in the period of growth (school, university) we have a major commitment to learning - ie. we do not work, do not feed families and children. With relatively little effort, we can build a rich network of logical chains so that in the next stages of our lives we can continue to enjoy the fruits of our labour with pleasure and ease the freedom to dream, to achieve countless successes and good, to create and live our lives colourfully and happily!

Deshka Petrova is a teacher of education and vocation, with interests and realization in the field of personal development and improvement. In an all-human and social sense, she is idealistic, supportive and methodically provoking to the understanding, stimulation and manifestation of the positive and creative principles; to the development of individual talents, to the formation of a sustained will for success and a happy world perception. Deshka writes poetry and prose. Her creative quests are influenced by interests in spheres such as psychology, communication and personal transformation. Her poems reflect a sincere hope for dialogue, reflection and harmony - for everyone separately and everyone altogether. She writes essays on self-knowledge and personal growth, on the art of communicating with yourself and the world, as well as on the free expression of personality. Now Deshka is working on a book for children, where she aims to express the idea of unrestricted human potential, which should develop into conditions of happiness, satisfaction and love.


Gavin McCormack MEET GAVIN

How did the offbeat idea of building

center for women invited me over so I

schools in the Himalayas come to

packed my bags and two days later, I

you? What was the toughest part of

was in the Himalayas. I trained with

its implementation?

him for about eight weeks. The

I was a teacher in Sydney, Australia,

training was of very poor quality so I

and have been in this profession for

took over the training and made a

twenty years. So teaching has been

curriculum. I trained over a hundred

my passion for a very long time.

women in those eight weeks. The

About five years ago I did a degree in

father of one of the girls wanted to gift

Montessori Education and I got a job

me a farmland and he took me to his

at a Montessori School in Sydney

village, Newalperassi. I told him that I

which also required me to teach in

didn’t need his land as I could not do

different parts of the country.

anything with six thousand square

However, I got a bit bored with just

meters of rice field. He told me that

going to Australian Schools. I am a

they didn’t have a school and asked

climber so I thought maybe I should

me to take the land and build a

go and visit the schools in the

school. I realised how poor the people

Himalayas. I did a bit of research and

were in Newalperassi and that they

found a training center in Kathmandu

really needed a school. I came back

and gave them a call. A man called

to Australia with that idea. I am a

Ananda Devakota who runs a training

children’s author and I have


“The feeling that you get from doing good is unbelievable.”

thousands of followers. I told them

Australia are ill-treated. There is a

about this project and that I needed

huge amount of racism here.

money, to which they responded. I

However I found these people to

went back to build my first school

be amazing and also tried to do

in Newalperassi. Since then, I have

away with racist behaviour in the

built two schools and I am building


another one. I am also managing

In the past years, I have run

eight other schools in Kathmandu.

hundreds of marathons. Every time

So, it’s pretty amazing.

I run a marathon I raise around two

Actually, it’s not difficult to make

thousand dollars and try to do

In one of your recent tweets, you

things happen in Nepal if you have

something good. So it’s just grown

wrote, “If you want to teach children

money but there is a limit to it

over time. Now I have gained a lot

about risk-taking, drink from the

because of the bad infrastructure.

of momentum and have become

Ganges.” Why so?

Although it is difficult to get the

famous for building schools in

Well you know, we live in a society

materials, the people there are

Nepal and many people come up

where everyone is scared to make a


to me with big projects asking if I

mistake. When I was in Kathmandu, a

could build them a university. Well,

vehicle had crashed into me and I

When did the philanthropic bug bite

I can’t do that because there is just

nearly broke my leg. I was hospitalised.

you and what have been your

me. I am only one person. I have a

That was a mistake on my part and

ventures down this line?

few friends in Nepal who help, but I

from that mistake, I learned to look

I am an adventurer. I have

am not an NGO or a big

before crossing the road in

travelled the world my whole life. I

organisation. To be honest, all of it

Kathmandu. So you have to make

have lived in many countries

is not just for everyone else. It is

mistakes to learn and to move forward.

around the world. Now if you are

also for me. The feeling that you

I went down to the Ganges and saw

an Englishman teaching in primary

get from doing good is

people drinking cups of water from it.

schools, it is very easy to teach

unbelievable. I guess it is the same

There was a dead dog, a dead eagle

anywhere in the world. I worked in

for every philanthropist.

and a dead body floating and I was

a Muslim school for ten years in

shocked. They told me that I should

this country. You know, Muslims in

drink from it because it would be good for my immune system. So I drank a little and luckily didn’t get sick. It obviously was a risk and I wouldn’t promote children to drink this kind of water but I do promote risk-taking. Of course, if you want to be successful in life, you have to take risks. If you don’t, you will be just one of the people who work from nine to five their whole life and retire at sixty-five. That is not a kind of life that I want to live. I’d rather take a few risks, make a few mistakes, learn and have a life full of excitement. That’s exactly what I try to promote to my children in my schools. So that’s

Gavin McCormack with some children at his school.

why I wrote about the Ganges. Maybe that was not a good idea.


It is tragic that education in the

to make their classroom better.

two-day conference in Delhi. Several

present times is becoming a

The fact is that if you can improve

schools will be coming with their

money-spinning propaganda with

the overall standard of teaching by

teachers and I am going to talk about

deterioration in both the quality of

sharing a variety of different

how they can improve their

teaching and the teachers

teaching styles with every school in

classrooms. Parts of India, China,

teaching. What do you think about

the world then these big schools

Nepal and Africa don’t have access to

the situation?

that charge a lot of money would

the internet. So we can’t rely on

You are right in a way. Let’s take

be like any other school. Times are

technological advances to improve it.

Montessori for an example. When

changing. It is not about sitting

We have to start right from the basics.

Maria Montessori invented her

down and listening to your teacher

Women empowerment is your next big

teaching methods over a hundred

telling you facts so that you can

project. How do you plan to go about

years ago, she did it for the poor

write them down, sit a test and get


people. Now if you look at any

a grade. That time is over now.

This is something I have been doing for

Montessori, it costs a student

The time now is to learn from your

some time now. The training center in

around fifty thousand dollars per

environment and allowing the

Kathmandu is just for women. Women

year. It is a perfect example of how

children to choose their own

empowerment is a big thing but it is not

education has been turned into a

destiny. Look at Sweden, Finland

something that I have been

money spinner. Coming back to

or Denmark. That is exactly what

spearheading. It comes naturally to me

your question, I think the problem

they are doing. I think a way to

as I work with lots of women. Recently,

can be solved in one very simple

solve this problem is giving

I saw that five women in Northern India

way which is to bring the very best

teachers around the world a

were raped just because they were

practices together. If you follow me

platform or place where they can

protesting. So we have to educate

on LINKEDIN, you will see that I

gather information and not rely on

these people in rural areas. We need

post about two or three times a

their governments to provide it

to educate the men and young boys

day. I write about how teachers

because the governments aren’t

that it is not the right thing to do. You

can improve teaching methods and

providing it! Freedom of Choice

can’t just go about raping people.

quality. I have about thirty

needs to be given to the teachers. I

Women are equal to men. Let’s take

thousand followers and they are all

can see it coming. Infact, I will be

the example of Nepal. There was a law

teachers. They want to know how

coming to India in September for a

for hundreds of years that said that when a woman was menstruating, she had to sleep in the barn with buffalos. Even today, if you travel to the west of Nepal, men still send their wives to sleep with buffalos in freezing conditions. This is brutality because they don’t understand the implications of that. Therefore, empowering women should be our goal and I feel very strongly about this.

A group photo on the last day at the training center that he had been working in.

“I’d rather take a few risks, make a few mistakes, learn and have a life full of excitement.”


What has been your most cherished

me to Nepal. Whenever I go there, I

week I give one of them away on my

experience to date?

have a little treat for myself. I finish

LinkedIn without getting anything in

There have been so many. If I had to

school and head towards the

return. That is a part of being a good

choose one, it would be the last day

mountains for a few days. I climb

educator. So I urge all of you to try to

at the training center that I had been

something high and big. It is almost

do the same. I am coming to India so

working in. Kathmandu is very hot

like meditation, just being there. You if somebody wants to invite me to

and dusty but they came and studied

never know what is going to happen. their university for a talk or

every day and we all became very

You may be driving and there could

conference, I would be more than

close friends. I asked them to share

be an earthquake or a landslide. I

willing to come. I love Indian people,

their life experiences and how hard

was waiting in the airport a few weeks Indian food and cricket. I love

their lives were. They narrated the

ago and I saw a plane landing and it everything you people do.

cruelties in their village, like being

crashed! It was dangerous but

To teachers, I would say that you

mistreated by their husbands. On the


have to teach with passion. You have

day they graduated, we went to

I have a mission. My mission is to get to find that passion. That is why

school. They all came in their sarees

a Nepalese citizenship in a non-

teachers have so many holidays, to

and it was so beautiful. I gave them

corrupt way. What I want is the

venture out and develop their

certificates and then we took a group

Minister of Education or Tourism to

passion. Go out to the world and find

photo together. That was the greatest

come to me and a give me a

your passion. Imitate your passion

moment. Children have parents to

Nepalese citizenship and tell me that I back to the classroom. In all my years

care for them. These women didn’t

could go there and stay for six

that I have taught and have been a

have anybody to take care of them.

months, build a house in the

philanthropist, I have had so many

This moment was a life changer for

mountains if I like or do whatever I

students who are philanthropists. I

them. I knew that now, when these

want. That is my ultimate goal. It is

meet children who are ten years old

100 women went out into Nepal to

my dream to live six months in the

and tell me that they want to help

teach in schools, they would teach

Himalayas and six months in

people. That is my passion which I

with more quality and passion.


translate into my students.

Essentially by training them, I trained

What is your message for our

thousands of students. That is the


power of it. I had a meeting with the

In twenty years I have accumulated

Minister of Education of Nepal and

thousands of resources and every

, Thank you Gavin!

then the journalists came and put up an article in the Himalayan Times’ front page- ‘One Man’s Mission to Change the Education System of the Entire Country’. That was my greatest achievement. After spending a lot of time working in Nepal, how special has it all been? What brings you back to this country? Nepal has the biggest mountains in the world. When you get close to them, they make you feel insignificant as they tell the history of their time on Earth. They have been growing for millions of years. That’s what attracts

Gavin McCormack spends time with the students of his school.

EdYOUfest 19th-23rd August Millfield School, Street, Somerset England

I'D LIKE TO TELL YOU ONE FANTASTIC STORY, THAT HAPPENED NOT LONG AGO! ...WE CAME INTO EACH OTHERS' LIVES AS STRANGES, AND WE QUICKLY REALIZED THE PERSON YOU ENCOUNTER IS OFTEN MORE THAN THE PERSON YOU SEE... This is how Vika Kosterina from Belarus describes EdYOUfest which took place at Millfield School, Street in the UK from 19th to 23rd August this year. I was thrilled to participate in this joyful festival of teaching where I was able to meet a lot of like-minded inspiring educators from many countries. What I particularly enjoyed was the useful plenaries and fun workshops where I learned new methods of teaching which I could apply in my lessons. But above all, EdYOUfest was a place where I was given the chance to step out of my comfort zone and grow as a person. Inspirational English talked to some of the other teachers about their experience during the event.

Exploring the JOY of TEACHING

On the first day of EdYouFest I was taken by surprise when someone said to me that they didn’t think English people could attend the conference. Even as a native speaker you can never stop learning about your own language and the ways in which you can teach it. EYF was the perfect place to show this. I learnt new methods, improvements on methods I already use and so much more. I came away with so much food for thought that it will take me until next year’s conference to digest it all. Tim Bowen showed us in his plenary how the English language has changed over the years and the influences from other languages such as Latin, Germanic, Arabic, etc. We also looked at new terms and expressions that have developed over time, eg. Anthropomorphic buses – Do buses really have human characteristics? He followed this with a workshop on teaching pronunciation. It was good to look into this topic, intonation, stress and phonics. Ken Paterson, with his Spoken Grammar plenary, added new dimensions to the way in which I try and teach ‘real English’ as I call it. This has yet to officially added to teaching syllabi, but if students want to sound really English it is so important. It is the everyday language used by native speakers. Day Three’s plenary was by Suzanne Lewis, which looked at presentations from the audience’s perspective, making it appealing, interesting and relevant to the audience. Quite often overlooked when planning a presentation in my opinion. This I will find useful for preparing students to give presentations at work. The workshops themselves were also eye openers and the only disappointing thing for me about EYF was that I didn’t get to attend them all. Particularly interesting for me was the Neurolanguage Coaching by presenter Rachel Palin. This I can see when I have had the time to absorb and read more about it, will be very helpful in both my teaching and my personal life. Cuisenaire Rods, something I have used since my own children were young, by Steve Hirschhorn again added new knowledge to my repertoire of uses. I recommend that everyone buys a box of these ‘magic’ rods and use them for lessons. So many uses. Whilst I didn’t get to Jim Baker’s workshop, I really learnt a lot from talking to him and he is now my technical guru when it comes to computers and their use when teaching. I am not very technical despite teaching on line for a living, so for this I am very grateful. I would like to thank everyone else, both presenters and organisers and especially the many new friends I have made for a most enjoyable time. And in case there are any doubts every native English teacher should attend to learn, teach and make new friends.

Sue Fulford



Ken Paterson

Judy Wong

Valentina Holubeva

Julia Volkova

Meeting teachers from around the world, and hearing about their professional lives, in the superb setting of Millfield School was an exciting and intense experience over the four days of the conference. I hope that my talk and workshop on SPOKEN GRAMMAR were useful and interesting. Above all, I was inspired by the commitment and enthusiasm of the teaching colleagues I met in the canteen and at evening events, and look forward to keeping in touch and exchanging ideas.

Once again... EdYouFest 2018 at Millfield School in Street, UK has filled my soul with wonderful spirits, old and new!! The delicious mixture of different cultures and views just proves a teacher's responsibility to foster global citizens in our learners and ourselves! Until we see each other again...

EdYOUFest is a perfect format for professional development and human soul. The teaching excellence revealed itself both in presentations and workshops as well as in expressive dancing and inspiring conversations. I am looking forward to the next one.

First time is always special. Coming to Britain had for a long time been a dream that came true....EdYouFest and its participants made it colourful and bright, fruitful and informative. It helped me to find friendship and soulmates. I'll never forget it. EdYouFest and Millfield school will be in my heart forever.

Liliya Kleiner

Larissa Albano

Shiho Fukumoto Pound

Susanne Lewis

Regarding our EDYOUFEST meet-up I`ve got only a positive review, as it was beneficial for my professional development to attend informative workshops, participate in interactive discussions and share experience at Millfield. Many unforgettable events, useful acquantances and of course wonders of England. I`ll try to do my best to implement the experience gained in my job which will definitely be challenging.

Last week I took part to EdYouFest both as a workshop presenter and an attendee. My presentation was all about games! In particular, I focused on games played in television programmes: I adapted TV games to fit them in the EFL class. It was amazing to share my ideas with teachers from all over the world. During the workshop teachers played the games and then they reflected on how they could use them with their students. The best thing was that I got even more ideas for my next classes. It is true when one teaches two learn.

My experience at EdYOUFest hosted by Millfield school is fantastic. I would say that was something to inspire me and make me try exploring in teaching further more. Although I teach a different subject, all the techniques I learned during this festival are highly relevant to any educational industry.

What a privilege to have been part of this year’s EdYOUfest. I met some wonderful and truly inspirational educators from all over the world, and it would be great to meet them again next year!



Jim Baker It was a privilege to be asked to be a workshop presenter at Edyoufest. What I enjoyed the most was actually meeting all the beautiful people I'd spoken to online.

Irina Pinyuta When I heard about this event I interpreted it like "educate yourself first", because nobody can teach anybody - everybody learns oneself. This kind of association motivated me to join the group of enthusiastic teachers. Step by step, my vision of its mission transformed into "a festival of pioneering ideas" which feed the learner centered approach. My expectations came true. Having completed the course, I clearly see that I have the privilege to be part of the association of geneous Enthusiasts, Entertainers and Educators. Nowadays it's popular to discuss the phenomenon of teacher burn-out. EdYUOfest is aimed at preventing that. The only thing I regret is that I did not contribute to the community with a workshop about differentiated instruction with information technology. So, next EdYUOfest fest event is waiting for me.

Lobna Ben Nasr Dear ELT community, it was a pleasure to contribute to such event as edyoufest. This is the second time I attend this event. In Palermo, two years ago, we met an experienced group of ELT community and we exchanged ideas and experiences. Edyoufest this year, was an interesting meeting of enthusiastic ELT community from all over the World. The presentations and workshops have been insightful and significantly enhanced the teachers' motivation to more effective teaching. My own workshop is entitled " using songs in EFL classes". It focuses on the importance of using the english songs lyrics as an authentic material which can be used to enhance the learner's affective and cognitive interest in the target language, to foster his active learning process and improve his proficiency.! The workshop was interaction-based, theorydriven and activity-

Vika Kosterina EdYOUFest for me is like a rainbow: lots of ideas, plenaries, workshops, unique people, bright and unforgettable emotions …. My teaching journey has always been a fascinating one mostly because I have never intended to be a teacher in the first place. I've always liked the idea of helping others and explaining problems they might have had with the English language, but still - I was somehow convinced that I wasn't cut out to be a teacher. The moment I realized that teaching was my call was the one I knew that in order to be a teacher, I primarily needed to be a learner. I feel that it is only through acknowledging our pupils' individual voices and talents that we develop as teachers. I have come to understanding: once students realize their voices matters and assume responsibility for the way they learn, teaching becomes the most meaningful profession in the world! In order to continue my wonderful journey and be part of learning process, I visited EdYOUFest. EdYOUFest inspired and empowered me to change the world and to be a better tomorrow. I will do all my best to help my society in teaching English with fresh and up-todate ideas of this event. The future is a mystery, but I definitely see myself in a classroom, full of inspiration and knowledge, new techniques and ideas, new intonations after taking part in EdYOUFest. Modern world is so integrated, so I plan to be charismatic, owing to Sharyn Collins; my lessons will become creative thanks to Steve Hirschhorn and Cuisenaire Rods; I can’t sing, but I should, because Lobna ben Nasr inspires me! I will never forget the remarkable Rachel Palin and Neurolanguage Coaching! Unfortunately I couldn’t attend all the lectures, but all presenters are my Guru from that educational festival! I can't tell where the next stop of the journey will lead me to, but one thing is for sure: I will keep teaching and learning, learning and teaching and I can add to this, looking forward to new meetings and plenaries with amazing, smart and talented people! Thank you to Giovanni Rottura and Mark Greenow for an unforgettable and magic melody not only in my heart, but in the hearts of all attendees of EdYOUFest!

We can’t live a single day without an impact on this World. What kind of impact it would be, depends on us! Vika Kosterina

With Larissa Albano spiceupyourenglishclass@gmail.com 20

This is Larissa Albano, a Trinity Tesol Certified EFL teacher, who is well-known in the EFL teaching industry. Her British Council award-winning ELT blog is read by thousands of English teachers, who love bringing FUN into their classroom. Why? Because her creative and energetic nature helps her to turn everything she sees into a game, even a fly swatter and an ice-cream stick. Larissa runs Workshops for Students and Teachers where she demonstrates how learning a language could be both meaningful and entertaining.

Why games?



* The ‘Spice Up Your English Class’ workshop is divided into 60-minute sessions. * In each session only 15-20 students are involved. In this way everyone can take part in the games, will feel included and have fun! * There are workshops for primary and secondary schools. * Your school need to provide a projector and a screen. * Larissa normally selects games according to your students’ ages and levels. * The ‘Spice Up Your English Class’ workshop is learnercentred. This means that students will have the opportunity to practise English and develop their communicative skills. 22


The ‘Spice Up Your English Class’ workshop for teachers is 90 minutes long. * The workshop will be different according to teachers’ needs, but it will always focus on the use of games in the EFL class. * The ‘Spice Up Your English Class’ workshop will focus on the adaptation of popular games and new ones (created by Larissa) in order to use them in the classroom to make students’ produce language and, at the same time, assess their progress avoiding the stress and frustration of traditional tests. * After the workshop, teachers will be able to use the materials given during the event. 23

Hi Tiffany, what has inspired you to create JOY IN TEACHING? I founded Joy in Teaching as a direct response to the increasing demands and overwhelming roles of teachers. Throughout my 16+ years teaching in a wide variety of schools at all levels I witnessed far too many good, caring teachers become frustrated, stressed, and overwhelmed – some leaving the profession altogether. I too couldn’t deny that I was experiencing some of the same feelings and began to research all things resiliency. I created Joy in Teaching to serve teachers and administrators who seek to build resilience and support teacher retention. Joy in Teaching examines what a life in education means and offers actionable and inspirational resources to pre-empt teacher burnout and address the hard issues educators face each day. Judging by your own experience, what is the Number 1 tip you could give a teacher who’s been suffering from mental burnout?

Reconnect with your purpose. 25

Continued from previous page

As the school year goes on it is easy to get bogged down in the minutiae. Days go on repeat – meetings, planning, grading… Our world can shrink down to the size of a classroom and we can forget the real and inspired reasons that we are in education. So, go back. Maybe it’s just a year, maybe 10, or 30, or more – to that moment you decided to enter the field of education. Do you remember? You didn’t just stumble into it. It took years of schooling. It took late night studying. Practicums, student teaching, job searching…. You devised a plan and you followed through. This is because you wanted to be an educator. By going back to why you started you can connect with those initial reasons of entering the profession and leverage your past inspiration to reclaim your joy. Take time to remind yourself of the reason you got into education. Why was it so important that you enter this profession? Chances are you had some lofty idealistic goals when you started out. There is no reason that those same goals

themselves. It is for all those who want to know they are not alone when the profession they have dedicated their lives to begins to lose its joy. It is a beacon of light amidst the turbulent turmoil of a profession in which statistics prove has the ability to devour.

shouldn’t still inspire you today. The difference is now you are making those goals happen. About two months ago your book JOY IN TEACHING was published. Would you tell us more about it, please? Joy in Teaching provides a research-based framework of action. The book, written for educators at all stages, clearly lays out methods and tools to boost teacher resilience, reduce job-related stress, and support career retention in schools. Joy in Teaching is a book to inspire reflection and to motivate action. This is a book for educators who see the need for a new approach to teaching for their students and

“By going back to why you started you can connect with those initial reasons of entering the profession and leverage your past inspiration to reclaim your joy.” 26

The book also has a companion Workbook

and the workbook The Definitive Joy in

which complements it nicely. How can

Teaching Workbook: A Workbook and

teachers use it successfully to combat

Guide to Facilitate an Examination into a

daily pressure and achieve joy in teaching?

Life in Education by Dr. Tiffany A. Carr are both available on Amazon.com and you can

The Definitive Joy in Teaching Workbook

read more about them and find links to them

guides educators through the book Joy in

on www.joyinteaching.com/books.

Teaching and provides discussion prompts,

Also, for schools and districts who are

conversation extenders, and fillable resources.

interested in purchasing books in larger

Perfect for book studies and professional

quantities for their staff there is special pricing


available by contacting

Together, the book and workbook create a


meaningful departure from the impersonal

School purchase orders are accepted.

approach of professional development and offer refuge for educators seeking to nurture their well-being and reclaim their joy in teaching.

Finally Tiffany, how can teachers get the book and the workbook? The book Joy in Teaching: A ResearchBased Framework of Action for Educators

, u o y k Than ! r r a C Dr.

Bring a photo showing something that you like about the world. Then hold a discussion on what the students like about it.

Ask the pupils to write the question “How would you change the world?” on a piece of paper, then mingle and collect at least 5 students’ answers. When they are ready, discuss the answers they’ve got. Is there a common theme in the answers? Remind your students that they are talking about hypothetical situations and they need to use the Second conditional:

Tell the students that they’ll watch a short video in which people at various ages say how they would change the world. Explain that the ideas below are mentioned in the video. While watching it, the students need to put the ideas in the order they hear them. . Link to the audio file: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hqznUenqN_s&feature=youtu.be


a. I’d like to get dinosaurs back b. I’d like to change the amount of fear c. People should believe in themselves d. Everyone should be treated equally e. How fast we travel f. I wish I could change rich people to poor people g. We should be more patient h. Overusing social media i. Abolish bad beliefs j. I wish I could stop wars

Play the video again and ask the students to note down the changes they agree with. Then put the students into groups, ask them to discuss their notes and choose the top 3 changes they would like to see in the world. Each group should choose a speaker who will present and explain the group’s choice.

Tell the students that they will see a video in which a boy explores people’s different ideas about how to make the world a better place. Play the video and ask them to answer the following questions: 1. What common misconceptions about changing the world does the boy mention? 2. How can one person change the world? 3. What does he mean by saying: “Little people, living out big love.” Link to the video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4z7gDsSKUmU&feature=youtu.be

The boy mentions the website www.inspiredgifts.org . Ask the students to visit the website and see what its purpose is. If possible, choose a gift and dedicate it to someone the students care for. If you find that the idea is inappropriate, ask the students to come up with an idea for a small project which could make a difference in their class/school/community. Some ideas- bake a cake and surprise a retired teacher/ ill classmate; donate books/clothes to the local charity shop/orphanage or a school in a poor area 30

Show Eleanor Roosevelt’s quote to your students and set a plenary discussion. What did the American activist want to say?

Students work individually. Ask them to complete the sentence.

I am‌‌.. Explain that they should keep their notes until another stage in the lesson.

Show the verse to your students. Tell them that they have to fill in the gaps with an appropriate word of their own choice. Today I saw a __________ in the __________ It told me I can do anything If I __________, I___________, I _________ in me After completing the exercise, put the students in pairs and ask them to compare their texts.


Explain that the text comes from the song I BELIEVE from the film A WRINKLE IN TIME. Play the song up to 1:06 and let the students check their answers. Link : https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SphTGtDlhHw

Show the lyrics from the first part of the song. Ask the students to think about their meaning: Some people stand, some people move Though times don't last, but tough people do As long as you've got hope You'll find your way There's power in the thoughts that you think There's power in the words you say Like I can, I can, I will, I will I am, I am, no fear, no fear Today I saw a rainbow in the rain It told me I can do anything If I believe, I believe, I believe in me I believe, I believe, I believe in me

Here’s the next verse from the song. There are a few missing words again. Tell the students to work in pairs and see what words they can come up with: I've got the _________ inside of me And I've got no choice but to let it ___________ As long as there is ___________, I can make it anywhere I go If I follow my __________ I'll end up building a yellow brick road After you discuss the pupils’ ideas, play the rest of the song to check. Then show the original verse: I've got the light inside of me And I've got no choice but to let it breathe As long as there is love, I can make it anywhere I go If I follow my dreams I'll end up building a yellow brick road.

Discuss the following questions: 1. What does “a yellow brick road” symbolise? The phrase comes from the film, “The Wonderful Wizard of Oz”. It symbolises “our dreams”. 2. What is “the light” inside of you? The light is your soul/consciousness. However, depending on your students’ level and age you may want to explain that “the light” is “ the best part of you which shines out and lets other people know how wonderful you are.


Show another verse from the song: I'm living my best life I am a flower that's blooming like roses in Spring Living my best life I am wearing a crown that's only fit for a queen I'm glorious, victorious, a warrior! Ask the following questions: 1. How does the protagonist see themselves? 2. What has helped them “live their best life”? 3. What has given them the belief in themselves?

Ask the students to take a look at the “ I am “ notes they took at the beginning of the lesson. Would they want to change anything? If so, what? Why?

1. Write a poem/essay with the title I AM 2. Create a video with the title I AM- They should showcase their strengths, achievements, dreams and how they see themselves in the future. They could use either of these websites: https://www.powtoon.com or https://spark.adobe.com


Try these fun activites that my students always enjoy

It is a mingling activity which works really well with a new class. Each student gets a copy of the worksheet that contains the information they need to complete the task. The learners walk around and ask appropriate questions to find someone who has done the activity described in the worksheet. Check out the activity on page 39.

Who doesn’t like board games? You need a dice and some counters and of course a board game. You could either prepare the questions yourself or ask the students to write down their own. The questions could refer to their summer break or a way in which to get to know each other. You’ll find the template on page 40.


Ask the students to create a story about their summer but they need to include 3 FALSE facts. Put the learners to work in small groups and tell each other their stories. You could turn this activity into a game. The student who’s guessed the most FALSE facts will be the winner.

Before the lesson put up some summer pictures on the wall. The activity works best if the number of pictures corresponds to the number of students. When the lesson starts play a piece of music and ask the pupils to walk around. I would choose soothing music such as “the sound of waves, seagulls…” to put everybody into the mood. Stop the music in a couple of minutes and each student needs to stand by the closest picture. Then they create a chain story using the pictures. You could start with the student who’s closest to the door, for instance.

I love vision boards and I believe that they are a great way to manifest our dreams. But how about if we create a board which shows our goals for the coming school year and also the projects we would like to involve our students in. You will need a large notice board or a piece of cardboard, some paper and crayons/pencils, etc. First discuss with your students what you intend to achieve by the end of the school year and also what local and/or international projects you could work on and then get creative. I would do some research on some exciting national and international school projects first and prepare a list of the most appropriate ones before the lesson. 38





are looking for

Do you know any inspiring children,

and we will share their story. Just send

who are making a difference in your

us the story of your nominee (letter,

school or community? Nominate

video, artwork, poem, etc.) and why

someone to become a Hope Hero

they are inspiring to you!

Send your entries to: kaitlin@kidsunite4hope.org info@englishwithrussie.co.uk


This is Sissy Ma, an 11-year-old girl from Shanghai. I have been her English teacher for over four years and she has always impressed me with her kindness and vivid imagination. Throughout the years I have seen her grow not only as a confident English speaker but also turn into a more mature young lady with a heart of gold. A couple of months ago at the beginning of our lesson Sissy excused herself and said she was finishing writing something in her diary. Of course, I was curious to find out more about her musings and my student’s answer left me speechless.

“I am writing a list of all my classmates and a positive trait they’ve got,” Sissy said. After enquiring why she had decided to do this, my student said that she’d been bullied by some of her classmates but she did not want to focus on their constant nagging. On the contrary, Sissy believed that everyone had a positive side and that is what she was determined to explore… My eyes were full of tears and it took me a few seconds to compose myself. Now I have to admit that I had read about this psychological technique before, however, never did I expect that an eleven-year-old would

come up with it by herself. I knew Sissy was SPECIAL. So soon after that day I decided that I should dedicate a whole issue of the e-zine to FINDING THE LIGHT in yourself and others. So this edition is dedicated to you, lovely Sissy. Last but not least, my student is also into writing stories. I have been helping Sissy develop her writing skills for a while and it is in this very issue where you’ll find the first chapter of her new story THE POWER OF MAGIC.

Read the first chapter of Sissy’s new story on page 57.


Close your eyes and relax your body. Take a deep breath, fill up your abdomen and then slowly breathe out through your nose. Let's do it again. Take another deep breath and then slowly breathe out. Now let’s do it once again. Slowly take a deep breath, hold it for as long as possible in your lungs and then release it through your nose Bring your awareness to your head, your neck, your shoulders, your chest, your back, your abdomen, your legs, your knees, and your feet. Make sure that every muscle feels relaxed and imagine yourself as light as a feather. Now bring your awareness to your heart. Feel it’s energy and see it pumping the blood in an even rhythm. Now imagine that that golden light is shining from your heart. Breathe into it. Now the golden light starts to spread slowly around the body and reaches your shoulders, your chest, your back, your abdomen. You begin to feel this pure love spreading across your body and making you feel loved and safe. Continue visualising the golden light, now it is reaching down to your legs, your knees, your calves and then your feet. Can you see your toes glowing? Take another deep breath and release through your nose. Now let's imagine that this pure golden light is covering your neck, your face and reaches the top of your head. Your whole body is glowing. This is “your light” which is made from love. Take another deep breath and embrace that loving energy. Every cell of your body is now energised and shining brightly. You are feeling strong and loved. Take another deep breath, and as you exhale, give thanks for the loving energy that you have received. During the day, be aware of the love and light you carry, and if you feel disempowered, remember the golden light streaming from your heart. Now slowly move your fingers, your toes and when you are ready, open your eyes.


NOTE Teachers use various methods to encourage and recognise students’ work. It is believed that they are a great way to boost their performance and improve their behaviour. In Shanghai Starriver Bilingual School pupils receive a HAPPY NOTE for their excellent work. Mr Zard, one of the Maths teachers at the school, shares the positive changes he’s witnessed in his students’ attitude to studying as a result of using the HAPPY NOTE.

We have been using the HAPPY NOTE for exactly a year. If students have excellent homework or have made great improvement, we will give them a HAPPY NOTE. They can use it to change small gifts. So to some extent, the happy note will improve students’ homework quality. And normally we will have group competitions during the class time and the winner will get a happy note. And we have different themes for the competition. Sometimes it will be the best behavior. Sometimes it will be the most correct answers. We use “Happy notes” to encourage kids to do better in different aspects. As a result, kids are more willing to contribute and well behaved. They become more

Mr Zard Shanghai Starriver Bilingual School China


What positive reinforcement do you use with your students? 47

Chapter 15 Hi everyone, Do you remember the riddle I challenged you with in the last chapter? Here´s a reminder for you:

They look like twin brothers, both sturdy and tall. They work together and go everywhere together. But they only go near solid food and do not care for soup. Who are they?

I have received quite a few correct answers but for those of you, who could not get their heads around it, here´s the answer:


Have you ever used chopsticks? I know it could be pretty hard to eat with them. Russie once asked me why chopsticks are used in China so I collected some information for her:


hopsticks were first used in 1200 B.C. They were made from long twigs and people used them to stir food in the hot cooking oil.

n 400 A.D people shortened the chopsticks and started using them as utensils. Additionally, the philosopher Confucius believed that sharp utensils like knives would remind people of the gruesome way animals were killed to be eaten. However, chopsticks had dull ends, and eaters did not associate them with images of the slaughterhouse.


Continued from previous page

Frank and Russie’s Little Big Adventures

Also, people should bear in mind the following

crucial role in the overthrow of the Qing

etiquette when eating with chopsticks:

Dynasty. “Mrs. Li, I remember we studied in our

* Don´t spear your food with them.

history lesson that Sun developed the Three

* You shouldn´t dig around in your food for a

Principles of the People. Would you remind

particular item.

me, please, what they are?” I ask.

* Never tap your chopsticks on the edge of

The lady gets up from her comfortable

your bowl. We believe that beggars do this in

armchair, goes to the bookcase and brings

order to attract attention.

an old history book. It doesn´t take her very long to find the right page, and then she

I am writing this story while sitting in the


cosy living-room of Mrs Li. Russie and I decided to use Airbnb this time and rent a small flat in the city of Nanjing. My teacher wanted to stay in a traditional Chinese home in order to get a better feel of the culture. So when Mrs Li welcomed us in her beautiful home, we were happy to find out that she is a retired English teacher who´s really keen to tell us about the traditional lifestyle. Our hostess has straight black hair and is medium height. She is very kind and caring and makes sure that we feel at home. Mrs Li has collected dozens of brochures which describe the main sights in the city. So

“I found it. The three principles are:

Russie and I take a look at them to choose

Nationalism, People’s Rights and People’s

what places of interest we could visit. The

Livelihood, Frank. As you may well know Sun

city definitely has a lot to offer and we plan

believed that China should become a free,

our itinerary carefully. After consulting with

prosperous, and powerful nation.”

our kind hostess, we decide to go to Sun Yat-

“It seems to me Sun was a great leader, “my

sen Mausoleum tomorrow. She tells us that

teacher comments.

Sun Yat-sen is known as the Father of

“And a great teacher, “I add, “Because he´s

Modern China. He was the first president of

taught us to believe in ourselves. However,

the country and although he ruled for a short

as history shows, it has taken China a long

period of time, Sun is renowned for playing a

time to become successful.”


Continued from previous page

Frank and Russie’s Little Big Adventures


Ma n e s atY n u

m, u e l u so ng i j n Na

I wake up quite early. The sunrays are

the Purple Mountain are seen in the

coming through the open window and I

distance and it reminds me that this is

can feel the warmth caressing my face.

where we are heading to today. I feel

When I go to the kitchen, I find Mrs Li

excited to learn more about the Chinese

and Russie chatting about recipes from


different countries. Mrs Li can´t believe

Soon we thank Mrs Li for the delicious

that in England they often have a full

breakfast and leave the house. We catch

plate of toast, eggs, bacon, mushrooms

a bus to the Sun Yat-sen Mausoleum.

and black pudding for breakfast. Of

The journey takes us through some

course, she respects the culture

picturesque parts of the city. It´s still

differences. I still remember how

rush hour so the roads are quite busy.

delicious the full English breakfast was

In about 40 min we arrive in front of the

when I arrived in England last year.

Mausoleum and the first thing we spot

We have a cup of Jasmin tea and some

is the long steps we need to climb up.

savoury dumplings on the balcony while

This historic site is located in the Purple

enjoying the chirping of the birds and

Mountain so the air is fresh and the

the spectacular views. The outlines of

greenery around us is really relaxing.


Continued from previous page

Frank and Russie’s Little Big Adventures

“Russie, we need to go through the

buried in their thoughts. I realise that´s

memorial archway first so let´s get

an important visit for me. It makes me

going,” I tell my teacher.

very proud of who I am and the Chinese

When we approach the arch, I notice

history. Sun Yat-sen´s life is such an

that the word “LOVE” is written on it and inspiration for me. I promise myself to I wonder why. I make a note in my diary

dedicate my future to be of service to

to ask my history teacher later.

other people. Russie reminds me that we need to take


a bus and go to Xuanwu Lake. We´ve arranged to meet Mrs Li there and have a picnic. Our friendly hostess said she would prepare some local home-made

“Frank, what does that sign mean over there?” Russie points at the letters above her head. “The world is for everyone”, teacher. This is what Sun Yat-sen believed in and that´s why he was such a beloved leader.”

food so I am really looking forward to it. Luckily the journey takes us only half an hour and when we get off the bus, we see Mrs Li standing by the gate and holding a basket. I can smell some cookies. She must have been quite busy preparing the food.

“I love this concept, too and that´s what I also believe in, Frank, so I am happy we also came to pay our respect to that great man.” “This memorial is extremely popular with Chinese pilgrims who respect Sun Yat-sen´s ideas.” We are lucky that it´s not very hot today because the walk up the steps is quite tiring. It takes us about twenty minutes to reach the top of the stairs. We enter the building where it is very quiet. Some people are reading the information on the walls, whereas others seem to be

Xuanwu Lake “I don´t like those clouds,” Mrs Li says and points at the sky. It is about now when I notice the dark clouds hanging over us. I wonder if we´ll be able to find a small café to hide before it starts raining. Shortly, I start to feel big 52

raindrops on my face. Everyone is

Surprisingly, the summer shower stops

screaming and trying to find shelter.

soon and a beautiful rainbow adorns the

“Come on, let´s hurry up. I know a cosy


tea house nearby.” Mrs Li says and we

“That´s a miracle, Russie! We hardly

follow her quickly.

ever see rainbows in China,” I tell my

“It feels like being like back in England,

teacher excitedly. “In fact, the last time I

where it can start raining at the drop of

saw one was when I was in England.

a hat.” Russie shouts whilst we are

Let´s go out and take some photos while


waiting for Mrs Li.” Fortunately, our

It takes us just a couple of minutes and

hostess has just bought the dumplings

we find ourselves in a lovely tea house. It so all of us leave the café and find a dry is quite small but really warm and

spot to spread our picnic blanket.

welcoming. Mrs Li suggests buying

I can´t wait to eat some of the delicious

some roast duck dumplings for us.

roast duck dumplings. I see Russie

While waiting, Russie and I browse

taking a bite and her face shows how

through the beautiful pictures on the

much she´s enjoying it. Mrs Li reminds

wall. They all depict scenic spots in the

us to leave some room for the chocolate

park surrounding the lake, such as nice

cookies she´s brought.

bridges, magnificent statues and boats floating in the calm water.


Continued from previous page

Frank and Russie’s Little Big Adventures

“Frank, those dumplings are out of this

Russie steps back in shock. I can see that

world. I´ve never tasted anything more

everyone is looking at her. Luckily, I stop her

yummy in my life, “Russie says. “ Thank you,

on time. Then Mrs Lee tells her:

Mrs Li, for this lovely treat.” The elderly lady

“Russie, it is believed that the lotus signifies

smiles kindly and I see she´s happy that we

the holy seat of the Buddha. So no one can

like the food.

touch it.”

“I am glad you love it. It´s believed that the

“I am sorry I didn’t want to cause any

local chefs prepare the best dumplings in

commotion. But why is the flower so

China. Isn´t that true, Frank?”


“Yes, that´s right, Mrs Lee. Before I left

“Can you see how the lotus proudly rises

home, my parents told me not to miss

from the muddy water in the river? It

eating some of the famous local

symbolises the purity of our heart and


mind. It is ultimate perfection.”

We are happy that the sun is shining again

Russie gazes at the flower again as if she’s

so we decide to take a boat on the lake after

examining its sheer beauty. Its delicate

we finish our lunch. It is such a pleasure to

petals remind us of its uniqueness.

relax in this beautiful surrounding. I see

“I wonder what the flower is used for, Mrs

Russie get up and approach the water. Oh,


no, what is she trying to do? Pick up a lotus?

“Oh, it is widely used in medicine and also

“No, teacher, you can’t pick up this rare

its seeds are edible.”

flower. It is forbidden in China,” I explain

“I’ve just remembered that my


grandmother often drinks lotus tea to fight off insomnia,” I add. Finally, Russie ends up only with a few photos of the mystical flower. Soon we pack up and head off to hire a boat. You’ll find out more about our adventures in this beautiful city in the next chapter.

See you soon!


Idioms are widely-used in everyday English. Unfortunately, they seem to be causing lots of problems to students. Here are three idioms used in this chapter of the story. to feel at home- to feel as if one were in one's home; out of this world- Extraordinary; very exciting at the drop of a hat- immediately; instantly

Have you got the hang of English idioms? What is the best way to memorise them?

1. When were chopsticks used for the first time in China? 2. Why do Frank and Russie decide to rent a flat in Nanjing? 3. What did the first president of China believe about the future of the country? 4. Why does Frank feel proud to be Chinese? 5. Why does Frank say “It feels like being like back in England, where it can start raining at the drop of a hat.”? 6. Why did Frank's parents tell him to have some roast duck dumplings in Nanjing? 7. Why aren't people allowed to touch the lotus? 8. What is the lotus used for?

Frank says he’s very proud to be Chinese because of the country’s history. How about you? What makes you proud to be born in your country? What is your cultural identity?

Frank and Russie’s Little Big Adventures


Crossword Across 2. a plan of a journey, including the route and the places that you visit 4. touching somebody/something gently 6. sudden noisy confusion or excitement 7. to be a sign of something ( infinitive) 8. small very thin branches

Down 1. people who travel to a holy place for religious reasons 3. the condition of being unable to sleep 5. to make something/somebody look more attractive by decorating it or them with something ( infinitive)


It was Friday af ternoon. Angela came back hom tears in her eyes e and could not . It was Andy ag hide the ain who called h often call her “P er names. He w otato” or “Fatty ou ” and the other Angela had not kids would laugh ld told anyone ab at out it. She wou bedroom after sc ld go straight to her. hool and write in her her diary. And th today. Her mum called her to hav is is what she di d e dinner but she heard her. pretended she h adn’t When Angela ca me into her room , she saw a beau sitting on her be tiful dark-haire d. d girl “Who are you?” Angela asked her unexpected gues “Who are you?” t. the girl replied in return. “I am Angela an d this is my bedr oom. How did y “I came through ou get in?” the window. You left it open. Rem “Oh, yes. It was ember? silly of me to do so.” Angela look to reassure herse ed at the window as lf that it was op en. “What is you if “I don’t have a n r name?” ame. Where I co m e from, we don’t would you call m have names. Wh e?” at Angela looked at her in disbelief. “Where does this wondered. Then girl come from?” she noticed the wings on her ba she guest must hav ck and thought e been to the fa that her ncy-dress party brought more qu next door. Oh, estions: “How di this d she come in?” on the tenth floo Angela’s family r and they don’t lives have a balcony. Angela could not “Or maybe she is dare say the wor …!” d.

Let’s speak?

To be continued

1. How did the gi rl get into Angel a’s room? 2. What would be an appropria te name for A ngela’s unexpected gues t? 3. What do you she is…!”?

think Angela mea

ns by saying: “O

r maybe

4. Do you know anyone who ha s been called na mes? Have you tried to help them?




Join our Facebook page

Inspiring Teachers

Do you want INSPIRATIONAL ENGLISH to reach other inspiring teachers and students? Then simply

Share it? 59












Across: 5-simmer, 6-initially, 7-tough, 9- sleeves, 10-chime, 11-fortunately, 12-dough Down: 1-grumpy, 2-opponents, 3-brew, 4-distracted, 5-silkworm, 8-household

The word SHORT

Image credit: pages 2, 3, 49, 62, front and back cover - Inspirational English page 7 - Peter Taylor page 10- Deshka Petrova pages 12-15 Gavin McCormack Pages 18-19- EdYOUfest ( Facebook page) Pages 20-23- Larissa Albano Pages 25-27 - Dr. Tiffany Carr Pages 42 & 43- Sissy Ma Page 47- Mr Zard pages 50-53- Frank Wang Pages- 5, 6, 7, 8, 11, 24, 28, 29, 31, 32, 34-37, 44, 46, 48, 58, 59

- https://spark.adobe.com

Design Marusya Price


See you in November, 2018!

Contact details: info@englishwithrussie.co.uk http://www.englishwithrussie.co.uk/

Profile for Inspirational English

Inspirational English, Issue 45  

INSPIRATIONAL ENGLISH is a free bimonthly e-zine which aims to bring positivity into the classroom. The e-zine which stirs your soul, "tick...

Inspirational English, Issue 45  

INSPIRATIONAL ENGLISH is a free bimonthly e-zine which aims to bring positivity into the classroom. The e-zine which stirs your soul, "tick...