It takes TIME to get out of ESL

January 29, 2014
It is important that stress is reduced but focus is improved.
Fun = Language Skills

Lord Byng Secondary School says this:
    •    Students typically spend 2-3 years in ESL + 1-2 years in transitional. It is not unusual for students who come in with very limited English to spend an additional 1-2 years in ESL.
    •    A new language takes students up to 7 years to attain fluency.

My advice is this:
Please do not fret if you are not out of ESL immediately. 
This is a process that you are going through. 

You can move faster by doing these:
    •    Join clubs at school - English ones to make friends and practice communication

    •    Do many activities outside the house - community centre courses, skiing or
                   other sports, Boy Scouts/Girl Guides, Robokids, PedalHeads (bicycle classes), etc.with English speakers.

    •    Play English games online.

    •    Read every day harder and harder books - focus on the content, the author's reasons for writing, and vocab. This does not always mean writing stuff down but just paying attention.

    •    Watch movies - English only first time, with English sub-titles the second time.

    •    Write a short journal daily. Write your feelings and ideas. 10 - 15 minutes.  Don't worry about grammar.

    •    Ask your ESL teacher for advice.  Then follow it.  She/He is watching you and waiting for you to speak up.

    •    Plan your time and work in small doses. 20 minutes on one subject at one time is enough. You get tired!!!

    •    Sleep a lot.  That means go to bed early. Not enough sleep = no energy to learn.

Love from you tutor,


January 17, 2014
From the Brain Bulletin

"A novel is a direct impression of life." ~ Henry James
Good point.
Reading fiction, it turns out, is a great way to develop your social brain.
Research shows that reading novels, for example, shapes our brains and molds our social skills.
A study by Keith Oatley and Raymond Mar found that reading fiction improves your ability to connect with others. The study demonstrated that people who read fiction perform better on tests of empathy. This result h...

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David Suzuki on Climate Change

October 17, 2013
Check out this video by Dr. David Suzuki for an easy explanation of how climate change has come and what we can do about it.

David Suzuki - Global Report on Climate Change 2013 from VoVo Productions on Vimeo.

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Parents Support Reading at Home (Chinese)

October 17, 2013


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Parents Support Reading at Home

October 17, 2013
This is from the Lord Byng Secondary School website to help ELL students.
The information is good for all English language learners.

Ways to Support Reading in The Home
1. Read with your son/daughter on a regular basis. A minimum of once a week, or better, two times a
week. You can read in your own language or in English.

2. Discuss together what you have read. Parent tells son/daughter what he/she has read. Son/daughter
shares what they understood from the story. THIS IS NOT A LESSON in which the ...
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TED Talk on China's future

July 6, 2013
This is a super talk on TED.  There is no transcript or translation yet, but it is very powerful!!

"Eric X. Li, a Chinese investor and political scientist, begs to differ. In this provocative, boundary-pushing talk, he asks his audience to consider that there's more than one way to run a successful modern nation. A venture capitalist and political scientist, Eric X Li argues that the universality claim of Western democratic systems is going to be "morally challenge...
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Tim makes SMOOTHIES!

March 7, 2013

Tim (7 years old in Grade 2) and Lori cook together often for English class. 
He wrote up his creation of SMOOTHIES to share with you.

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Creative student gets an A in Social Studies

March 7, 2013
My creative student created a board game for Social Studies.

He had to have 15 questions about a Canadian First Nations group and made 20.  He had to design a board to play on and used the rivers of BC to be the paths to play with a short cut to the end. He had to write the game rules clearly so that his friends would enjoy the game, be engaged and want to play. 

He created items for the board that were thoughtful and cute and his friends and the teacher gave him an A for his effort and ...
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Harvard Students Cheat! Is it really the best?

February 3, 2013
To all my students:
Everyone has an idea of Harvard being the 'best of the best', but is it really? Just getting into an elite school does not mean everyone is an excellent student.  Cheating is not 'cool', whether copying on a test or plagiarizing on a paper. 
Ethics are of paramount importance wherever students learn.  Morals define us.

Dozens of Harvard students forced to leave over cheating
CBC News    Feb 2, 2013

A cheating scandal has forced dozens of students to withdraw from Harvard Univ...
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How important is studying creative arts? Very!

January 28, 2013

Top 10 skills children learn from the arts

(by Katherine Frey/The Washington Post)

You don’t find school reformers talking much about how we need to train more teachers in the arts, given the current obsession with science, math, technology and engineering (STEM), but here’s a list of skills that young people learn from studying the arts. They serve as a reminder that the arts — while important to study for their intrinsic valu...

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About Me

Lori in I got my Bachelor of Education degree in the USA but was born and raised in Canada. Working in Asia and with immigrant adults and children for 26 years has given me insights into the difficulties they face in a new country and school system. I like to help adults adjust to and explore the rich and diverse opportunities in Canada while also supporting them in their challenge of parenting in a new culture. I love to help children learn English, develop skills, and gain confidence to succeed in school and life.


“Don't aim at success. The more you aim at it and make it a target, the more you are going to miss it. For success, like happiness, cannot be pursued; it must ensue, and it only does so as the unintended side effect of one's personal dedication to a cause greater than oneself or as the by-product of one's surrender to a person other than oneself. Happiness must happen, and the same holds for success: you have to let it happen by not caring about it. I want you to listen to what your conscience commands you to do and go on to carry it out to the best of your knowledge. Then you will live to see that in the long-run—in the long-run, I say!—success will follow you precisely because you had forgotten to think about it” ― Viktor E. Frankl, Man's Search for Meaning A lack of planning on your part does not constitute and emergency on my part. "Most people don't plan to fail; they fail to plan." ~~John L. Beckley

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