…In with the new

Or: Some newer ELT blogs to check out in 2014

In my last post, I looked at some blog posts I wished I’d commented on in 2013. In this post, I’d like to share some newer blogs that have caught my attention. Please do click through to them if you don’t want me to get all stroppy. Please also let me know in the comments  about other new ELT blogs which have caught your attention and I will happily list them too. This is not my first time to share new ELT blogs. I did so last May (and also shared some pet peeves as a bonus) and before that I shared blogs I was looking forward to in 2013. It was fun for me to re-read those posts and if you are not familiar with the blogs mentioned there, my recommendations still hold true. Most of the blogs mentioned are still pretty active and surely worth a look. In this post, I am sharing these blogs in no particular order. They are all blogs that came to my attention in the past few months. Here they are:

How I see it now
Lovely title. Lovely writing. Lovely posts. Lovely person. Please just go ahead and read it.  I am sort of cheating here in calling this a new blog because I now see the author, Hana Tichá, had posts starting last fall. I am not sure exactly but I think I first saw her blog this early this year. It was a revelation for me. I was hooked immediately. [Note to self: remember to go back and check the earlier stuff at the first opportunity.] She has been on quite the blogging run lately, with 14 posts already this year! Her most recent post is called,”Through the Lens of Communicativeness” and it is most excellent. Her post where she described a negative classroom experience (and the exchange in the comments) is also highly recommended. As I was writing this I realized I somehow missed a post of hers On human interconnectedness which I am going to be bold enough to recommend without even having read it myself.

Teacher to Learner
Speaking of interconnectedness, Hana (from just above) mentioned one post from this blog on her blog. That post was “My Mindset” and I think it is a good place to start on this fascinating blog. As you might guess from the title, this blog is about a teacher learning a language. In the author’s  (Matthew Ellman) words, “This blog is an attempt to look at language learning from a student’s perspective, in order to inform language teaching perspectives.I arrived in Malaysia in October 2013 to work as an English teacher. In order to be able to teach better, I decided that I would document my attempts to learn Malay, from scratch, and scrutinise some of the theories that I put to use every day in my classes along the way. This blog is the record of that journey.” Do check it out.

After Octopus
The tagline reads, “A blog mostly about language teaching. Not seafood.” While I enjoy seafood I was happy for the clarification. A little bit of research (ok…reading the about page) reveals that the author, Vedrana Vojkovic, is part owner of a language school called “Octopus Language Services” where she worked for a number of years. Thus the name. I have known her on Twitter for a while I have a very good impression of her. Her first post was the 11 challenge and was a nice way to get to know her better. Her subsequent posts have been about Wordle (and fruit!) and her experiences at  MachinEVO 2014. Without any pressure on the author I am looking forward to seeing more! 

Wednesday Seminars 
Disclaimer Alert: I actually know this author in real life. She is a friend and a colleague. Zhenya has written a guest post (a great post on being a “NNS” trainer) on this blog and been interviewed too. I am still convinced I’d be recommending this blog even without those factors. It is great. This post tells you some of the reasons she started the blogHer most recent post is about the Experiential Learning Cycle and I think it is worth reading and keeping an eye on her blog for updates in what looks like it might be a series. An slightly older post I’d like to share is about the night before an intensive  teacher training course begins.

Diary of a Newbie CELTA Trainer
Who is this guy? His about page is not much help. I do know he is a very good guy to follow on Twitter (@NewbieCELTA ).  He is a nice combination of quirky, fun, kind and informative. His blog is excellent promises to continue to be. Looking what is on the blog so far (quite a lot in a short amount of time!) I can see a mix of  sharing other blogs and resources related to training, a look back to earlier experiences, a great #ELTchat summary and a diary post and more. Check it out now and see what is coming in the next few months too. It promises to be an informative and entertaining ride.

“The Tao of middle management” is just as fascinating as it sounds. Yes, a blog dealing with the Tao Te Ching as it relates to management in ELT. I might be cheating a bit here too because I can see some 2013 posts there but it seems like more of a recent thing so I will bend the rules and be like water here as I share it. Two posts that stuck with me were, “Why motivation is demeaning” and “Above all, this.” I love the writing on this blog and also love the idea. I learned from the home page the author previously blogged about connections between ELT teaching and the tao.  Brilliant stuff as well. I hope my positive words regarding the writing and ideas here are not seen as untruthful.

The ELT Philosopher
Sticking with the philosophy theme here. There is one post on this blog and it is called, “Socrates CPD Cave.” Wow. Great stuff. I am not afraid to say I am hoping for more.
Also noteworthy is the blog tagline: Pass the Hemlock.

Luke Meddings
I believe Luke Meddings doesn’t need an introduction. I wasn’t aware of his blog or at least the new location until I saw “And it’s Bergkamp, via a reflection” and then “We teach to teach, they test to invest.” I think both these posts are worth visiting or revisiting and that this site is worth taking a look at and keeping an eye on.

The End (for now)
Thanks for reading. And clicking through the other blogs. Once again, please let me know any other suggestions you have. 



  1. Matthew

    Reblogged this on Diary of a Newbie CELTA Trainer and commented:
    Very cool. My blog has been included in a list on which a number of other blogs I really admire and strike me as MUCH smarter and worthwhile than mine. Anyway, thanks Michael Griffin. Your excitement about my blog fuels my own enthusiasm and dedication to produce something creative, valuable, and engaged in teachers’ community dialogue and interchange. Rock on.

  2. ven_vve

    Thanks very much for including my blog in this list, Mike! The author initially set herself the goal of two posts per month, to see how that was going to work out. 🙂 I’m currently working on a post you might find interesting given the topic of your upcoming BELTA webinar, which I’m really looking forward to. And now, I have to go and check out all the blogs on the list – I only know about (and absolutely agree with you in recommending) Hana’s and Matt Ellman’s.

    • mikecorea

      Hello! I just realized I hadn’t responded. I thought I did immediately. Hmm.
      In any case I really appreciated the comments and was very happy to received them. I hope you had a nice time seeing the other blogs listed. I have to admit I was a bit worried when listing blogs because of the possible implication that I am “demanding” more posts or something like this. Anyway, I am looking forward to you next post (of course with no pressure at all.) Thanks for the mention (reminder!) of my BELTA webinar. Im very happy you are looking forward to it. Thanks again for the response and best of luck with everything.

  3. Zhenya

    Mike, thank you very much for including me in your post: as a learning blogger I feel really excited and motivated (both to write more and read the blogs you are recommending!) Having a reader is so inspiring, and having a reader like yourself is even more so. I will keep writing ‘ELC sketches’ and hope to release one more next week. Welcoming any thoughts in response! I am now going to join Vedrana and read the other blogs you wrote about!

    • mikecorea

      Hi ZH,
      It is so very nice to have the chance to share your blog (and read it as well).
      Thanks very much for this very sweet message which I enjoyed thoroughly.
      I am very much looking forward to reading more on your blog and I will do my best to keep the exchange going!

  4. Hana Tichá

    Dear Mike,
    First of all, thanks for mentioning my blog here; I feel really flattered and grateful. When I started blogging six months ago, I didn’t even dream of being noticed and now I’m here, among all those wonderful bloggers. It is so nice of you to collect and then share what you’ve collected in such a comprehensible way. I mean, you make life much easier for us who want to keep discovering and connecting with other people in the blogosphere. Also, by writing up this post you’ve shown that you are genuinely interested in what other people share. You’re spreading lots of positive energy around the globe 🙂 Hats off!

    • mikecorea

      Hi Hana,
      Thank you very much for the warm comments here. I appreciate them very much. I am very happy to have the chance to share your wonderful blog! I am looking forward to reading more and connecting more. Thanks again!

  5. kevchanwow

    Hi Mike,
    What a fantastic list of bloggers. I’ve only been blogging for about 2 years now. Sometimes I feel as if keeping up with my blog can be more of a chore than a joy. Taking time out from my week to take a closer look at how I feel about teaching and to look again at what’s going on in my class is something I usually have to do in the evening or on the weekend. It means reading less books or putting off watching “Breaking Bad” for another month (was it really that good?). But when I start to think maybe I’ll just take a break from blogging, along comes a fresh wave of voices exploring and sharing what’s going on in their classrooms froma whole new angle. In the past few weeks Hana and Zhenya have helped remind me how much blogging is about reinvention, recharging, and connecting. Thanks for taking the time to chares these blogs and for helping to keep our community connected. I (and so many other teachers) probably owe a lot of our love of RP, blogging, and getting connected to you.

    You’re a mench!


    • mikecorea

      Hey wow… thanks for the comments and nice words here. That is very kind of you.

      I think you wrote on Facebook or somewhere it is a great time to be a teacher and I think that is a great point. There are some wonderful things going on and I think the RPPLN is a great example of that. It has been wonderful to see those posts springing up.

      I am still shocked at how much I enjoy blogging and reading blogs and the whole thing. Of course your blog/interaction is a big part of that.

      Thanks again for the comments, they really meant a lot.

      PS-Breaking Bad is really good and worth watching, i think. I am not ready to persuade you away from spending your time blogging to watching this but it is really good. Seasons 3-5 are some really good TV.

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