Tuesday, August 18, 2015

How do you address corruption?

Protesters march calling for the impeachment of President Dilma Rousseff along Copacabana beach on 16 August 2015

Thousands hit the streets of several Brazilian cities last Sunday to protest against president Dilma Roussef, former president Luiz Ignacio Lula da Silva and their political party and to call for an end to corruption. 

Corruption is almost like a bad cold that you never fully get rid of. For many people, corruption is something inherent of us as humans - wherever there is money and power, you have someone corrupting or being corrupted. 
If we look at things from that perspective, the title question of this post seems a waste of time. But for others, corruption has a cure. 

While watching some YouTube videos, I came across this excerpt of an interview of current Leader of the Opposition to the Trinidad and Tobago government, Dr. Keith Rowley, who seeks to answer the question.

According to Rowley, people only engage in corruption because (choose the correct answer)

  • they always choose to do the wrong things
  • the system does not punish corruption doers
  • it is a genetic disorder that is hard to control
Rowley lists three conditions for corruption. Complete his sentences by watching the video again, if necessary. (Check your answers at the bottom of the post)
  1. If you have systems or ......... for wrongdoing, corruption will ..............
  2. If good people see a handful of bad people doing bad things and getting away with it, then it becomes ............ to good people.
  3. Persons who otherwise would not have misbehaved, would be ............... to misbehave, if the systems that are operating don't hold people ...............

Thursday, August 13, 2015

Feed me back, feed me back

Feed me back, feed me back 
Don't keep it away from me because 
You don't know... 
What it means to me 

 In virtually every stage of our lives, we have to be evaluated on our performance in a given situation. This evaluation comes in what we know almost universally as FEEDBACK. The problem of words like that is they become "buzzwords", often ending up as clichés. The word is used over and over so many times that the original meaning gets lost or diluted. 

Knowing what Feedback is (let's see how many times I am going to use the word here) might help us give it more effectively, and consequently, might aid those on the receiving end to take it for what it is - an assessment based on some kind of criteria - subjective or objective. 

While reading a leaflet about professional development courses in Portuguese, I cam across a "translation" of Feedback that woke me up to a better understanding of the concept

Acompanhamento e parecer sobre o desempenho de aprendizes 

Translating back into English, it is the acompaniment and report on the performance of learners. In order to give good Feedback, we have to accompany the process that leads to the final result and we have provide a detailed report on the performance. Feedback has to be clear and precise and based on pre-determined criteria that both assessor and assessee have agreed on or are familiar with. 

So how does Feedback translate in other languages?

In French - retour, remarques, réactions, impressions

In Spanish - retroalimentación, acople (like the sound from a loudspeaker), crítica (constructive criticism)

In German - Reaktion

In Italian - Retroazione

All of this to get back to my original point - feedback is constructive, grounded and precise evaluation of someone's performance. It should be clear and engligtening - for the one giving it and the one receiving it, so that steps can be taken to improve. This goes for any situation in life - not just at work or school. 

So, you probably know how I am going to end this post: by asking for feedback, if you care.

If you get to the end of the text and pass it on, I already greatly appreciate it. 

P.S. How do you say FEEDBACK in your language?

Wednesday, July 22, 2015

Personalize -Individualize-Revise-Maximize

How would you make this an interesting language lesson that gets students talking about their own lives and interests? 

Here's what I did

Voice Recorder >>

Thursday, June 25, 2015

If you're eating the hors d'oeuvres ...

Would you tolerate somebody coming into your house and trying to insult you? Lessons that can be learned from this.

This is part of Obama's comment after he had the heckler escorted out of the White House. 

How would you say it in a different way? 

As a general rule, I am just fine with a few hecklers, but not when I'm up in the [White] House. My attitude is, if you're eating the hors d'oeuvres.

Over to you: 

When is protesting against politicians and government officials acceptable? 

Is the saying "there is a time and place for everything" applicable here

Tuesday, June 23, 2015

No prayer, no chance

If someone said to you don't have a prayer, would you start praying? Why/Why not?

Look at the exchange from a text chat and find the sentence "he doesn't have a prayer". Choose the correct option. 

The person is optimistic/pessimistic about Diego Maradona's chances of becoming FIFA's new president.

Has someone ever doubted you could do something because you "didn't have a prayer"? Tell us what you did.