Katherine Bilsborough

Creating ELT materials

Helping teachers make excellent classroom resources



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25 April 2022

ELT materials, Freelancer life, Writing with others

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Collaboration isn’t just for our learners As teachers we recognise the importance of developing collaboration skills in our learners. As materials writers we create activities that involve working together to successfully complete a task. So if we take this one step further, surely a good way to make our materials

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Talking about writing



19 April 2022

ELT materials, Writing about writing

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What I talk about when I talk about (ELT) writing Last week I was going to write a writing about writing post. But then I found myself a bit busy talking about writing. So I thought I’d write about that instead. The British Council invited me to do two Facebook

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numbers


How many (fonts, etc.)?



27 March 2022

Diversity, EDI, ELT materials, Evaluating materials as professional development, Inclusion, Writing about writing, Writing digital materials, Writing for Primary

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Hidden in plain sight I was reading a book the other day and that famous cliché popped up about the best place for hiding something being ‘in plain sight’, in a place where nobody would think of looking because it’s so obvious. A murdered body in a graveyard, a forbidden

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F on or F off? Should ELT materials teach swear words?



20 March 2022

ELT materials, Writing about writing, Writing for different markets

2 Comments

Swear words as content I’ve never been asked to include swear words in published ELT materials. There are obvious reasons for this of course and as many of the materials I’ve written have been for children, the omission is hardly surprising. But a conversation the other day got me thinking

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One big dog and lots of small dogs


How many projects should we work on at the same time? Which is better, one big one or lots of small ones?



16 March 2022

ELT materials, Freelancer life, Writing about writing

4 Comments

One For the first time in years, possibly decades, I’m only working on one project for one client. It’s a big one, but it’s just one. There’s a small ‘but’ here which I’ll add to the end of my post. For now I’ll just focus on the rarity of working

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Should we be talking about war with our students?



26 February 2022

ELT materials, Writing about writing, Writing for different markets, Writing for Primary

12 Comments

Uncomfortable topics Unsurprisingly, as we watch events unfold in Ukraine, this is a question being discussed in several forums over the past few days and, again unsurprisingly, people are sharing a wide range of opinions. It got me to thinking about the matter specifically from a materials writer’s perspective and

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Dolly Parton


Writing a good worksheet: Shakespeare or Dolly Parton?



12 February 2022

ELT materials, Writing about writing, Writing digital materials, Writing for different markets

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Cramming stuff in When I started teaching in 1987 I used to make most of my own materials because I was teaching private classes in a wide range of contexts and couldn’t afford to buy a lot of books. Also, in those days there wasn’t such a variety of resources

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Please don’t assume you know what I mean by ‘diversity’.



7 February 2022

Diversity, EDI, ELT materials, Inclusion, Writing about writing, Writing for different markets

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Next month I’m giving a plenary at the 45th TESOL Spain Convention [Register here]. When I was invited to speak, I decided to combine my area of expertise (creating ELT materials) with the theme of the convention ‘Innovating changes: a world of Diversity’. So I came up with the title:

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35 ways to improve your life without really trying



16 January 2022

ELT materials, Freelancer life, Writing about writing

2 Comments

In my last blog post [here] I wrote about four possibly life-changing intentions I have for the year ahead. They involved time, money and the work I choose to accept. I mentioned a fifth intention and that’s what this post is all about. I thought it deserved an entry of

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woman with binoculars


Looking ahead: small changes, big impact



13 January 2022

ELT materials, Writing about writing

1 Comment

It was recently ‘that time of year’, when everyone was looking back at the year that was drawing to a close. It was the perfect time to reflect on achievements or on lessons learnt. I’d intended to do the same but holidays got the better of me, so now, instead

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