You want fluency with that?

Most teachers spend a lot of time working on learners’ grammatical accuracy. To make sure your students improve their fluency too, be sure not to skip this important step. What step?

What’s wrong with this picture?
You start your lesson with an article that contextualizes the lesson’s grammar. After eliciting its meaning, you illustrate usage, and use a chart to show form. You give your students some controlled exercises and end the lesson with an extended communicative task. Why do so many students trip over the target grammar? Did they not get enough focused exercises?

Don’t skip less-controlled practice
The problem is jumping straight from controlled practice to free practice with nothing in between. …

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Join the NorthStar Blog

Join the NorthStar Blog!

Do you teach with NorthStar?
The NorthStar blog is a space for you to read about how other teachers
are using the series and to share your own experiences. Check
it out today!

Judy Miller got the ball rolling last semester. She shared stories about how she used the textbooks, extra exercises she created, and how she integrated MyNorthStarLab into her course.

The most popular posts so far:

Homelessness, Southern Accents, and Habitat for

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More on Passive Voice

Join the Conversation! We’re inviting all teachers using NorthStar to
blog about their experiences. How do you organize your lessons? What
materials do you bring to class? What’s working? What would you do
differently next time? Blogging is easy, and it’s a great way to
share ideas with the world!

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“You had me at hello”: Citizenship lessons from Jerry Maguire and Voices of Freedom

Bill Bliss Bill Bliss

“You had me at hello”: Citizenship lessons from Jerry Maguire and Voices of Freedom

In one of the more memorable scenes in the film Jerry Maguire, sports agent Jerry (Tom Cruise) flies home to reconcile with his wife, Dorothy (Renee Zellweger), who had broken up with him. Jerry professes his love for her and utters the now-famous line, “You complete me.” Dorothy responds with the equally famous line, “You had me at hello.” Applicants preparing to take the U.S. citizenship test could take a cue from Dorothy’s line, since in an important way the English exam for naturalization starts from the first hello! Continue reading