Show cover of TEFL Commute

TEFL Commute

TEFL commute is a podcast for language teachers. It is not about language teaching though inevitably it might crop up. All three of us are avid podcast listeners and like playing around making our own. TEFL commute is meant to be a light-hearted listen aimed at brightening your daily commute to class. Each episode is built a round a topic that you could use in your teaching and the podcast will have page on this site that will link you to articles, questions and resources you can use with your students. You can even get involved by recording your snippet of mp3 for inclusion on a future episode or leaving us a suggestion on this site. We had fun making and developing the idea so we hope you enjoy the listen. Lindsay, Shaun and James


Episode 100: TEFL Commute 100th Episode
Season 14 episode 7: Numbers is the last episode for this season and marks the 100th episode of our podcast. To celebrate the 100, we've done an episode on numbers. In this roundtable each of the team brings some numbers related to teaching to discuss. Since it is a milestone episode we also look back over some of our episodes and Shaun quizzes the team on TEFL commute related numbers.  Enjoy our 100th episode and see you later in the year for season 15. 
53:04 08/03/2022
Episode 99: Season 14 Episode 6: Party
In this episode the team show they have the finger on the pulse of politics by talking about parties. Lindsay decides he wants to dissect 10 Downing street’s party invite and this leads into a discussion about the party vocabulary, the language of the parties, and ELT and parties (both political and the fun kind) in ELT. Get ready for the TEFL commute does discourse analysis! 
39:34 22/02/2022
Episode 98: Season 14 episode 5: Drama
We’re back after our mid-season break and we’re getting all dramatic. In this episode Ceri, Lindsay and Shaun discuss drama and ELT.  Are they ELT thesps? Do they use drama? What are the benefits? In addition Lindsay tells us about academic drama and Shaun finds out if they other two can recognise a Shakespeare quote. 
45:50 08/02/2022
Episode 97: Season 14 Episode 4: Hotch Potch
We reach the half way point of the current season just in time for the festive season. In this episode the TEFL commute gang foolishly leave Shaun alone in a zoom room so expect some terrible jokes at some point.   In a different type of episode each of the regular commuters has their own little section as the commute team get ready for their Xmas Breaks.   
33:20 13/12/2021
Episode 96: Season 14 Episode 3: Volunteering
In this episode the TEFL commute gang talk about volunteering and ELT. They start by talking about asking for volunteers in class before discussing their volunteering within the world of TEFL and how volunteering might be different to having a hobby. 
36:28 02/12/2021
Episode 95: Season 14 Episode 2: Authors
In this episode, Lindsay Ceri and Sandy talk about authors and English language teaching. Did you know there are many famous authors who taught English? Why do materials writers not always consider themselves authors? We also have an interview with an English teacher who went into materials writing and then wrote a novel. And Sandy leads a classic TEFL commute quiz about books and writers and teachers.
41:44 19/11/2021
Episode 94: Season 14 Episode 1: Cheerful
We're back, it's our 14th season and we get underway by discussing reasons to be cheerful. After nearly two years of the pandemic, lockdown, online teaching and very little commuting we begin this season by looking at some of the positives we've taken from this time. 
21:18 01/11/2021
Episode 93: Season 13 Episode 6: Words
We bring our 13th season to a close with our round table episode. This season we talk words, words we like, words we don't like, words that have caught our attention and words that don't translate. The team are joined by @lexicojules to add a touch of gravitas to their discussions and get some insight into which of our chosen words might hang around. See you in the Autumn.
50:18 18/05/2021
Episode 92: Season 13 Episode 5: Young
From old to young – in this episode the topic of teaching most certainly comes up as Lindsay Sandy, Shaun discuss teaching young learners. They discuss many aspects of the topic from looking at what ages are considered YL to if there is a point that is too young to learn a second language. The episode also features several YL trainers whose contributions give practical advice to those teaching this area
44:23 26/04/2021
Episode 91: Season 13 Episode 4: Old
Are the TEFL Commute crew feeling their age? In this episode Ceri, Lindsay and Shaun discuss language associated with 'old', and consider language teaching with older students. Lindsay chats with Mark McKinnon about what it's like to teach senior learners, and Shaun leads the team through an Olde English quiz.
51:33 13/04/2021
Episode 90: Season 13 Episode 3: Plateau
In episode 3, Shaun and Lindsay return to find themselves stuck on a plateau so use this as an opportunity to discuss what the so-called Intermediate plateau is in language learning, how it happens and what things can be done to try and avoid / get off it.
38:18 22/03/2021
Episode 89: Season 13 Episode 2: Women
In this episode, we celebrate International Women’s Day with a takeover by Sandy Millin and Ceri Jones. They look at the history of the day, talk about their experiences as women in ELT, reflect on representation in ELT, and maintain the TEFL Commute tradition by having not one, but two quizzes!
44:48 08/03/2021
Episode 88: Season 13 Episode 1: Animals
Our 13th season begins by looking at animals. Lindsay ponders when we teach animal vocabulary, while Shaun gets carried away with onomatopoeic sounds. After joining us at the end of the last season, we welcome Sandy back with her new feature. Add in some quizzes, idioms and collective nouns and we have a bumper first episode of the season,
40:38 22/02/2021
Episode 87: Season 12 Episode 5: Podcasts
It’s the final episode of season 12 so it’s our traditional round table (well, round zoom) episode. This season’s theme is podcasts with Shaun and Lindsay joined by James, and a new additional to the TEFL commute team. This year’s rules are simple – bring one podcast related to language, one about teaching and one you’d recommend to others. So come listen and find out what we’ve chosen
50:47 21/12/2020
Episode 86: Season 12 Episode 4: Adventure
In the penultimate episode of the season, Shaun and Lindsay discuss adventure. They look at how TEFL is often marketed as an adventure, and the part adventure plays in course materials as well as discussing how to go about utilising ‘adventure’ with students from timeless classroom activities through to the latest craze of escape rooms.
35:07 14/12/2020
Season 12 Episode 3: Fake
It’s episode 3 already and this episode we talk ‘fake’, an interesting word that doesn’t always collocate with news! In the episode Shaun and Lindsay look at authenticity, imposter syndrome and whether ‘the man with 13 jobs, is real or not. In addition there is a ‘fake’ music quiz, and producer James gives us an idea for a fake news activity.
47:40 16/11/2020
Season 12 Episode 2: Dictator
In the week of the US election it seemed fitting to do an episode called dictator but don’t worry, we are not giving him too much airtime. While we do look at Trump's impact on the English language, the episode also discusses authoritarian teachers, and explores the use of dictation as a teaching activity.
38:47 02/11/2020
Season 12 Episode 1: Normal
Shaun and Lindsay kick off the 12th season of the TEFL commute by discussing ‘normal’. The talk about the use of the word ‘normal’, and discover the phrase ‘ the new normal’ is older than it seems. Lindsay regales Shaun with a tale of Mr. Average, and since it’s a new season we even let Producer James join the episode.
34:36 19/10/2020
Who's zooming who? The future
In the final instalment of our mini-series Shaun and Lindsay take ten-minutes to discuss the future. With lockdown beginning to undo in many places and schools working out how to start up again we discuss some of the ideas that have been suggested
14:41 16/06/2020
Who's zooming who? Breaks
In our penultimate instalment Lindsay and Shaun discuss taking breaks. We consider how to ensure that we take break in and between lessons and little trips for our well-being.
12:35 12/06/2020
Who's zooming who? Slow
In this instalment Lindsay and Shaun talk slow. No that will never happen, they only have ten minutes afterall. By slow we mean what to do when the internet slows. Lindsay gives you tips on making sure you have enough bandwidth while shaun gives you some ideas to help you with students on a slow connection.
12:21 09/06/2020
Who's zooming who? Breakout Rooms
It's WZW 12 and this time Lindsay and Shaun talk about breakout rooms. In the ten minutes they cover What they are? How they work? And of course things that they are good for from jigsaw reading through to escape room games.
12:26 05/06/2020
Who's zooming who? Sounds
In one of our favourite instalments of WZW, Shaun and Lindsay discuss sound, how you can do listening lessons, and what you can do with sound effects in an online room. From animal noises through to sounds around the house the ten minute challenge suggests how they can be used in online lessons.
12:06 02/06/2020
Who's zooming who? Participation
In the 10th instalment of WZW Shaun and Lindsay talk about the participation tools that you find in online classrooms. From emojis to polls they go through the features suggesting ideas for using each - all in ten minutes of course!
12:20 30/05/2020
Who's zooming who? Realia
Realia - the ELT term for Real world stuff we use in teaching. In this episode Lindsay and Shaun fill their ten minutes with the teaching ideas based around real world stuff. Enjoy.
12:16 26/05/2020
Who's zooming who? Guests
This is time out Shaun and Lindsay talk about Ideas for using a guest in your online lessons. The ideas they talk about include a teacher swap, getting guest judges and even having mystery guests. Listen now to find out about those and other ways you can utilise getting a guest
12:22 22/05/2020
Who zooming who? Powerpoint.
Online teaching often means using a slide so for this installment Shaun and Lindsay give you tips for the perfect slidedeck. Ten minutes means ten tips so off we go....
12:33 19/05/2020
Who's zooming who? Warmers
It's another instalment of WZW and this time Lindsay and Shaun talk warmers, in their ten minutes they try and give you a few activities you could try with your online classes. Enjoy!
11:41 15/05/2020
Who's zooming who? Lockdown Syllabus
In this instalment Shaun and Lindsay use their ten-minutes to suggest language areas that would fit into a lockdown syllabus. From the vocabulary of fridges to the grammar of wishes listen and decide if you agree.
12:13 12/05/2020
Who's zooming who? - Pictures
In this instalment of WZW, Shaun and Lindsay talk about some of their favourite picture activities for online rooms. As usual they set themselves a ten-minute time limit which, when trying to share anecdotes and ideas, once again might prove to be challenge.
11:41 05/05/2020