I’m a CELTA qualified, IELTS tutor from the UK, with over 8 years experience working with ESL students. I taught English communication classes at University level in Singapore for three and a half years, as well as Business English to university staff and office workers.
I tutored IELTS/ TOEIC/ TOEFL exam preparation, Academic Writing classes, and General English to teens/ adult learners for four years in Asia including projects in Singapore, Taiwan and Japan.
Prior to moving to Singapore, I taught English conversation classes in the U.K. for over two years to students from Asia, The Middle East and Africa. Last summer I returned home for six months to tutor IELTS classes in London, and General English courses for French, Spanish and Czech students. I’m presently teaching General English/ TOEIC/ IELTS classes to young teens and adults at a language school.
As an IELTS tutor, I see a lot of student studying just to pass the IELTS exam. I don’t recommend this approach. I think one should try to improve English overall – then passing exams like IELTS or TOEFL becomes very easy.
Don’t focus too much on mock exams. Don’t memorize answers for past questions. Rather, learn to talk about a wide variety of topics. Listen to native English speakers. Practice speaking English with native teachers. You will not only pass IELTS with a good score but also improve your English communication skills significantly.
In my experience as an IELTS tutor as well as an General English teacher, one of the most pressing problem for students is understanding the difference between speaking formally and informally. I address this by going through examples of formal and informal speech and ask them to identify the differences. I also find role play job interviews help them become more aware of the language they use. I instruct students of colloquialisms they should avoid in formal settings such as speaking to customers or managers in a work environment.
Getting tied up in hard, fast rules can paralyze a student of any language. Grammar is not without value, however with practice and gentle correction it will come with time and should not become a stumbling block to learning to communicate meaning.
I think that students need to gain confidence in speaking English first and foremost. With regular practice, gentle correction and guidance, their grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation will all improve. As an IELTS tutor or a General English teacher, my first job is to give students confidence to speak.
Spoken English Practice provides one of the best ways of achieving that as it provides a safe environment where a student can practice their English without fear of making mistakes and being socially embarrassed. In this private way they can improve their English skills and most importantly their confidence in speaking English fluently. They can then take these lessons into the real world.
I absolutely love travel. I find everyone in the world enjoys talking about their latest adventures. It is a universal human trait to speak and share about our unique life experiences. Different cultures fascinate me. My life is rich as a result of diverse experience. My closets are full of my photographs of travels in Japan, Taiwan, and Singapore, and the Americas.
I am deeply fascinated by unique cultures, environments, cities, food, architecture, and spirituality.. The human experience is multi-dimensional. It is to be celebrated!