User talk:Technopat/Archive 1

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Hi Technopat.Wave.gif Thanks for joining in. Really great to have you on board.--Bob M 05:48, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Crossword maker[edit]

Hi TP. I'm just playing around with this crossword maker which Glen recommended. I'm trying to figure out some way of getting a nice print out of it. Have you used it?--Bob M 09:18, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Answering Convention[edit]

Hi. And here I am laying down rules already. Bit like a Spanish waitress we know. Anyway, just wanted to mention that we usually answer a comment on the page on which it's posted, otherwise it's hard for others to figure out what we're talking about. I know that other wikis have other conventions. Cheers.--Bob M 09:33, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Sorry! Should've read the user's manual... --Technopat 14:17, 5 May 2009 (UTC)


Great work on the articles TP!--Bob M 19:06, 5 May 2009 (UTC)

Thanks! Won't be offended if you consider I've been too bold and you decide to revert me edits. Likewise if you don't agree with my explanations, etc. Cheers! --Technopat 19:09, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
Actually we seem to have very similar opinions about these things. Whether any others may object is another issue. But that's what talk pages are for.--Bob M 19:11, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
While I think about you're probably being constrained by the "vandal brake" at the moment. It automatically puts new users on probation for a day or so. It was written by a friend of mine but I can't switch it off for individuals. It should go away in a day or so.--Bob M 19:19, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
Not to worry - I can take a few roughs with a smooth! I actually reckon it's a good idea and wasn't taking it personally. While we're talking "modifications", would it be possible to automatise the watch tab for articles that a user has edited - Wikipedia does it - and I tend to forget to hit it... Cheers!--Technopat 19:26, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
That's a user set-up in preferences. Preferences/watchlist and select Add pages I edit to my watchlist.--Bob M 19:32, 5 May 2009 (UTC)
Cheers yet again!--Technopat 21:07, 5 May 2009 (UTC)


There is something weird about the references you put in False friend. I made a note on the Talk:False friend page. do you think you could have a swift look when you've got a sec? Cheers.  :-) --Bob M 08:03, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

Greetings Bob M - looks weird indeed, but that's what comes up when I try to use multiple inline citations to one reference as per Wikipedia commands. It works perfectly well - when you click on it it takes you to the right place, but yes, the appearance is weird. Please let me know if there's a better way of doing it. Cheers! --Technopat 13:50, 6 May 2009 (UTC)
Greetings indeed. I'm not sure it's right. it's got those funny numbers "1.0 1.1 1.2" which simply link you back to the page on which they are displayed. While I know a handful of wiki things I'm afraid that I'm not familiar with this one.  :-( --Bob M 14:47, 6 May 2009 (UTC)


In the light of your magnificent contributions I hereby bestow upon you the exalted rank of sysop at Teflpedia.--Bob M 18:33, 6 May 2009 (UTC)

Greetings Bob M. Many thanx for that - will try to live up to it (tho' that last syllable in there worries me...). Regs., --Technopat 20:34, 6 May 2009 (UTC)


Hope you got the ticks. If you want to feel afraid read this. (Enfermedad de lyme in Spanish.)--Bob M 17:54, 7 May 2009 (UTC)


Shouldn't you be in bed?--Bob M 22:51, 11 May 2009 (UTC)

Funny you should say that... --Technopat 22:56, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
Good night then. :-) --Bob M 23:01, 11 May 2009 (UTC)
AS yer men said: "So it's 'Goodnight' from me." " And it's 'Goodnight' from him." "Goodnight!" :) --Technopat 23:11, 11 May 2009 (UTC)


I've been pontificating over at one-to-one - there is a lot of personal opinion in the piece and you might want to express differing ideas. --Bob M 09:56, 14 May 2009 (UTC)

Looks great - just let me tuck into a couple of topys and nuance the dress code bit... :) --Technopat 10:09, 14 May 2009 (UTC)
Thanks for the input. I'll be putting more on this later I think as it's one thing that teachers are interested in. It's my impression that it's a bit more of an art than a science at the moment with people developing individual styles. Of course we're all individuals teaching individuals, so I suppose that's inevitable, but it would be nice to give new starters pointers and see what others do.--Bob M 10:49, 14 May 2009 (UTC)--Bob M 10:49, 14 May 2009 (UTC)


I've not been about so much today. Got to do some actual work from time to time.  :-( --Bob M 18:07, 15 May 2009 (UTC)

Now that you mention it...--Technopat 18:11, 15 May 2009 (UTC)

Teachers who are native speakers (of English)[edit]

Hi Technopat. A couple of times I find myself wanting to write: native-speaking English teachers or teachers who are native English speakers or something of that nature. The same sort of thing happens to a lesser extent with the term "English teacher" - as it's potentially ambiguous and could mean either a "teacher who is English" or a "teacher of English".

I can't think of any really elegant way to express these ideas - do you have any ideas? I don't really want to create our own acronyms as there is enough jargon in the profession already - though it's a possibility. Perhaps it would be best to define our terms somewhere on the wiki and link to them?--Bob M 09:15, 16 May 2009 (UTC)

Greetings Bob M - know what you mean. It's something I've never been able to get to grips with. Here I is, successfully telling me students to think in Logical English and I keep getting flummoxed by these basic concepts...
So if we get back to basics, a native English speaker is clearly (?) someone who has English as his/her mother tongue, ergo a native English teacher must surely be... but no, something goes wrong with the logic. I do use the term "English-language teacher" without specifying if s/he is native English or native Spanish and we're back at square 1. As for acronyms... I hate 'em and had been thinking of proposing to you to redirect all the ones at Teflpedia to one catch-all article but it's not a priority :) Cheers! --Technopat 11:02, 16 May 2009 (UTC)
There is the additional problem with the term "native". I remember working at a school where the teachers who taught English and who were also native speakers of the language were referred to the "natives" or the "native teachers" - but of course they weren't natives of that county. So every part of the description can be be potentially ambiguous. It gets even more complicated when you come to "non-native English teachers". But we will need a way to consistently refer to such differences. At the moment when I write stuff for teachers it's explicitly for Teachers of the English language who are also native speakers of that language. But it's such a mouthful to write out. Mmmm TELWANSOTL. About as user-friendly, transparent and pronounceable as SPQR. --Bob M 12:11, 16 May 2009 (UTC)


Any chance you could expand on what you mean by dictation? How long? That is to say how many minutes? Where do you get them material from? Do you create it or is it off the net? Do you really mean dictation? Not "fill in the gaps" or "answer questions"? When you say that you give it as homework - do you give them a cd, a tape, e-mail them an mp3? I'm most interested, and I suspect others would be too as it's something which is pretty unfashionable nowadays and I simply don't do it. Cheers. --Bob M 09:23, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

Will get round to it - it's well worth doing anything that "trains" students' ears.--Technopat 09:25, 21 May 2009 (UTC)
I agree 100% but I usually create exercises - I must admit that I've never had the nerve to give them pure dictation. It's an idea though.--Bob M 09:27, 21 May 2009 (UTC)
Version 1, which I do regularly and "spontaneously" just to keep 'em on their toes, is prepare eleven, twelve or even thirteen (never ten 'cos their attention starts wandering as they get near the magic number 10) often totally unrelated, out-of-context questions, affirmatives and negatives such as "No. 1 (this sharpens their wits): Have they sent that report yet?" or "Has anyone seen my cellphone?" which may sometimes be followed by something like "I'm sure I left it on that shelf" or "It wasn't there this morning". If I'm feeling soft, I'll repeat once, but if I do it's really important to move around the classroom so that any false intonation in my voice when repeating (i.e. not as spontaneously as the first time) is offset by the sounds coming at 'em from an unexpected quarter. I then get 'em to compare versions as pairwork or as a group. Once they've worked out the correct version, I get 'em to try to say them as fluently as possible, i.e. paying particular attention to linking. Depending on the level, it takes max. 10-20 minutes and they love it 'cos it's not only competitive among themselves, but also with me as the teacher. If they stumble over one, I get them to think about the gist of what I said, and reproduce the possible variations from there (was it a "he" or a "she", was it "can" or "can't"?) and give 'em one last shot to compare two possiblities for them to clearly hear the difference - again, walking round the room - even with one-to-one. On occasions, if they've stumbled over a particularly nasty one, I'll repeat it a couple of weeks later - recent enough for 'em to remember it but often too long ago for 'em to remember the exact wording, unless they're more advanced. One other thing, I actually say the sentences at slightly faster than normal speech - I rehearse them before class to try to get 'em as natural as poss.
Version 2, which I do more rarely, is we get a student to recommend a song or film and we watch/listen to a short segment in class. One of 'em is then responsible for providing copies for everyone, and they take it home and transcribe the segment. Next time round, they compare versions as pairs or group and when they're happy with what they've got, they present it to me and we go over it together to see if and how it differs. Reason I get 'em to do it for homework is that I don't like wasting valuable student-teacher contact time going over and over again the same thing 'cos some people pick it up quicker than others and it's better such differences get ironed out in their own time.
Hope that's clear enough - if there's anything that's not too clear... --Technopat 10:49, 21 May 2009 (UTC)
Most interesting. Thanks. Need to think about some of those ideas. May come back on that. --Bob M 12:21, 21 May 2009 (UTC)

E mail[edit]

Hi TP, are you going to enable mail on the wiki? Cheers. Bob--Bob M 16:46, 1 June 2009 (UTC)

Hi TP, it is a good idea to check that you have your correct email address in your Teflpedia preferences (<--scroll to bottom of that page), if you haven't already, so that you can do a password reset by email if necessary some day. Okay to uncheck the "[ ] Enable email from other users" if you prefer no email from other users. --Roger 14:01, 8 February 2012 (CST)


Good stuff! Those look pretty good and a cool template. :-)

But why not put them in the free lesson space? See: Help:Working with special spaces. There are a couple of rather garish templates which you can use to tell people to edit it or not: {{Noeditlesson}}

This is a free lesson which has been donated to Teflpedia by a teacher. You are welcome to download and use all or part of it in class. If you feel that parts of the lesson could be improved please do not edit it, but raise your points on the discussion page.

and {{Editlesson}}

This is a free lesson which has been donated to Teflpedia by a teacher. You are welcome to download and use all or part of it in class. If you feel that parts of the lesson could be improved please edit it, or raise your points on the discussion page.


I think that I'll standardise them presently and add a line to give teachers the opportunity to claim credit for them. I created a special namespace for lessons because having them in the same space as articles will potentially cause confusion.--Bob M 06:18, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

Actually, on another point. Did you mean to put the roleplays in that blue box?--Bob M 06:38, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
I think I figured out what you were attempting to do with the role play articles and re-formatted them with your template on top. I've also made the existing templates less garish. I wanted to put an option in the template to allow a teacher to claim ownership - but I find it's beyond my wiki abilities. :-( Ummm ... do you understand what I mean by "namespace"? --Bob M 09:08, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Greetings Bob M. We just had an edit conflict there, so I'll paste my original reply to you in case there's anything important in there, and then get round to dealing with the new points raised: Thanks - I thought they might appeal to you. The first is very much a case of "don't do as I do, do as I say..." but it's one of the (many) perks of being a vet!
I thought of the free space, but then I reckoned that for ease of use something along the lines of the Converstions questions format was beter, i.e. I pop in there in class, get the students to choose the topic from the list.
As for the role plays in the blue template - NO! It's something weird that happened as as I stuck the template on - if you have time to go back to the version of Education just before I slapped the template on, you'll see my original format. It's just I didn't have time or energy to check it out. Cheers! --Technopat 09:16, 4 June 2009 (UTC)
Perfick! That's exactly what I was trying to do - and the template is cool, too. Cheers!--Technopat 09:19, 4 June 2009 (UTC)

Teachers' room - Staff room[edit]

I'm going to create a special chat area on the wiki and redirect the welcome template to it. (It presently directs people to my talk page.) Also, in the happy event that more people join it will be a useful thing to have. I'm not sure what to call it but I'd like something informal. "Teachers' room", "Staff room" : anything else occur to you?

Good idea. "Teachers' room is probably the best - boring, but to the point. "Staff" gives the idea of being employed, and something casual, like "Take a break" isn't clear enough... Regs., --Technopat 09:50, 4 June 2009 (UTC)


With the help of User:Nx, who is vastly more able with wikis that I could ever hope to be, our templates can now be used to identify individuals by using a parameter after the template name. But it seems there may be a small additional issue. I have taken the liberty of crediting one of your classes to you. --Bob M 17:15, 6 June 2009 (UTC)

The language of politics[edit]

You might be interested in this World Service MP3 where David Crystal talks about the language of politics.--Bob M 14:13, 10 July 2009 (UTC)


Hi again. Thought you might have gone away. We now have the ability to upload (or link to) MP3s and Doc files.  :-) . --Bob M 17:57, 26 July 2009 (UTC)

Some visitors[edit]

Hi Technopat. You may have noticed some visitors wandering the site. They are some friends of mine from another wiki which is having technical problems. They've helped me out of a few tight corners in the past and I'm returning the favour. Cheers. --Bob M 06:34, 20 August 2009 (UTC)

Greetings Bob M - sorry for not replying sooner. Been off on me well-earned 'ols. More or less back to normal now, though and will try to catch up with what's been going down. Regs., --Technopat 10:38, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
Hope you enjoyed your break.  :-) A wiki where I'm sometimes active had a big server problem and I gave them some space for a while over August September. Things should be back to normal now though. (Incidentally, I'm sure that a smart chap such as yourself would be welcome at Rationalwiki.)--Bob M 11:59, 10 September 2009 (UTC)
Cheers Bob M. Was a bit confused regarding your original note, but finally got the message. Always a bit slow on the uptake, I do usually get it in the end. Anyway, now that summer's over and the heat gives way to stressful work, la mosca cojonera will surely find other pastures. Regs., --Technopat 22:52, 10 September 2009 (UTC)

Silly bunt[edit]

I memorised that entire sketch when I was a kid, and if I ever corner you at a party I might well bore you with it if you're not careful :) Totnesmartin 12:47, 17 September 2009 (UTC)

Bore away! The world could certainly do wiv more humour! Cheers! --Technopat 16:11, 17 September 2009 (UTC)

Hi, nice to see you drop in[edit]

Hi. :-) --Bob M 18:12, 11 October 2009 (UTC)

Cheers!--Technopat 18:19, 11 October 2009 (UTC)


I know people are always suggesting places where you could spend you time, but you might be interested in a new wiki blightynet - a wiki about everything British.--Bob M 15:10, 6 November 2009 (UTC)

Role plays[edit]

Hi TP. Thanks very much for your roleplays. I've moved them to the "freestuff" section and given you credit as the author. Freestuff is the place for lessons as they are not really articles about teaching. I've put on the template which says that people shouldn't edit them, but if you want to change that you can start the template with "editlesson" instead of "noeditlesson". Cheers.--Bob M 21:32, 29 December 2009 (UTC)


Hi Technopat. I can't believe that I left so many tyops! Thanks for fixing them.--Bob M 15:35, 19 February 2010 (UTC)


Aren't you watching the UK horse-trading?--Bob M 11:02, 7 May 2010 (UTC)

They shoot horses, don't they? Nah, I was asked to give my opinion as an expat on the radio and I told them that as a self-exile I wasn't interested in the slightest. Anyways, Spanish politics is far more interesting... Cheers! --Technopat 11:42, 7 May 2010 (UTC)


We're under an onslaught by spammers! Gooniepunk2005 02:39, 17 August 2010 (UTC)

I'm getting an awful lot of hits from:
I was about to start denying access when I found it was in Spain with at least one P address in Madrid. Before I start putting shields up against it could you confirm that it means nothing to you - as I don't want to lock you out.--Bob M 13:10, 21 August 2010 (UTC)

Autumn cleaning[edit]

Bob, have just been tidying up a bit over at Special:Uncategorizedpages, but there are still a couple of things there that need your executive decision as to how to cat. them or whether to ditch 'em. Regs., --Technopat 16:22, 6 November 2011 (UTC).

{{hard hat}} use[edit]

Hi Pat, thanks for all the great writing you do at Teflpedia! I try to help out with the works. To that end, I created a {{hard hat}} template that you can add to pages you are currently putting through major works, if you want to warn folks to look out for falling edits and such. The {{hard hat}}s have a homing mechanism built in so that all pages wearing a {{hard hat}} are listed in Category:Hard Hat Area. Please remove hard hats from pages once you are no longer currently throwing hazardous edits around; where there is no hazard of edit conflict there is no need for hard hats, as it were. Please consider using {{hard hat}} instead of {{under construction}}. However, I made {{under construction}} into a redirect to {{hard hat}}. So it should work whichever you use. I removed the {{under construction}} tag from several pages that are not currently undergoing active edits. Hope this helps, :-) --Roger 14:24, 8 February 2012 (CST)

Case of page name[edit]

Your opinion regarding the capitalization of a page name is requested on Talk:Corporate Social Responsibility conversation questions. Thanks! --Roger 18:45, 16 February 2012 (CST)