I am a teacher by choice. I was born in New Orleans and grew up on the Mississippi Gulf Coast, which is really a linguistic extension of New Orleans. (Culturally, we had the same religion and the same food; I grew up on gumbo, jambalaya, and crawfish etoufee.) As a kid, I knew that we talked different. Beaucoup (boocoo), the neutral ground (the median in a road), and passing by someone's house (meaning: to stop and visit someone) were all a normal part of my dialect. I grew up primed to notice language nuances.
I love teaching. I've taught English as Second/Foreign Language in the US, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Kuwait, and Japan for more than 30 years. I've also taught French and Spanish. In addition, I've conducted teacher training workshops all over the globe, from Argentina to Uzbekistan. I'm certified secondary (English & French), and one of my favorite events is working with hundreds of K12 teachers every summer in Arkansas through an amazing program with the Arkansas Department of State. I am a frequent conference presenter and will be presenting at both CATESOL (member since 1997!) and TESOL in 2011.
At a very early age, I loved teacher worksheets. Teachers then passed out mimeographed handouts that they had run off on a spirit master machine. The handouts were a bluish-purple color, and they smelled GREAT! Teachers often arrived in class with last-minute handouts where the paper was still wet and the chemical smells were very strong. When a teacher passed out a worksheet, everyone was smelling the sheets.... but while my classmates continued with their handout-induced highs, I -- being a nerd -- was noticing the design of the worksheet. How did the teacher set up the matching activity? Terms on the left and definitions on the right? (Very American, I know now.) Or vice-versa? And where did the blanks go? And which words did she ask? It is no exaggeration to say that I really LOVED school. I LOVED those worksheets. I LOVED our workbooks. And so it's no wonder that at the age of 25, I published my first book. So far, I have published 34 books with the University of Michigan Press, 8 with Houghton Mifflin, 7 with Heinle Cengage, 1 with Longman, and my most recent book (VOCABULARY BUILDER, 2011) with Oxford University Press.
I have a BA in English with a minor in Secondary Education and French. I have an MA in TESOL. I also have a PhD in Second Language Acquisition and Instructional Technology. My main research areas are vocabulary and best teaching practices. I'm especially interested in experimental, quasi-experimental, and case study research on the teaching of grammar, the teaching of vocabulary, and error correction in second language composition.
Who knew that smelling the chemicals on worksheets in the 60s and 70s would lead me to be a textbook and workbook writer today? Well, they say that everything happens for a reason...
I hope you enjoy my learning materials. I am always open to hearing your suggestions for improving my work. Please feel free to contact me -- whether it is to comment on one of my books, ask about a research question, or invite me to participate at a conference in your area.
В этот момент в тридцати метрах от них, как бы отвергая мерзкие признания Стратмора, «ТРАНСТЕКСТ» издал дикий, душераздирающий вопль. Звук был совершенно новым - глубинным, зловещим, нарастающим, похожим на змею, выползающую из бездонной шахты.
Похоже, фреон не достиг нижней части корпуса. Коммандер отпустил Сьюзан и повернулся к своему детищу стоимостью два миллиарда долларов.