Saturday, August 29, 2009

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Associate professor Phyllis Chew of Nanyang University in Singapore made the observation during the Cebu International ESL (English as a Second Language) Conference at Diplomat Hotel, Cebu City last Saturday.

She said that the trend is the result of the change in the status of women in society, increase in migration and transmigration, knowledge explosion and information technology, the writing revolution, and the rise of a global language.

“Teachers need to know these changes. English, it seems, has raced ahead of its competitors. For the last 20 years, so many want to learn it,” she said.

Chew said Singapore, for one, is attracting many Koreans who want to learn to speak English.
The Philippines, India and Malaysia are among the Asian nations that are known as good English teachers because they have been using the language as their medium of instruction, she noted.
“The fast way of mastering English now is through content. And speed is crucial in the process. Many learn English quickly because this has been used as a medium of instruction when they started school. They have been immersed in an English acquisition-rich environment since they were young,” Chew said.

Being known as a nation with a pool of good English speakers, she added, will boost the influx of international students who want to learn English.

The Koreans made up 27.83 percent of Cebu’s tourist market from January to June 2009. According to the Department of Tourism, most of them come to Cebu to study English.
Meanwhile, the knowledge explosion and information technology (IT) across the globe also signaled the need for teachers to incorporate IT in their methodology for learners, especially the young, to easily cope and “survive” in their studies, Chew said.

The IT aspect of learning is characterized by digitization of learning materials, production of e-books (electronic books) and creation of Ebraries (electronic libraries), she said.
“Integration of IT also makes online education possible and enables learners to do many things (while on the Internet),” said Chew.

She pointed out that a good method of teaching English will depend on existing variables—such as time, type of students, place and culture—that teachers have to assess before conducting their lessons. Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Filipinos see job prospects in culinary schools

MANILA (Reuters) - The Philippines, which for decades has supplied the world with a steady stream of seafarers, nurses, caregivers and domestic helpers, is now exporting practitioners of a cutting-edge trade: chefs.

"Chefs are the new rock stars now. Everyone wants to be a chef," said Ian Padilla, a Filipino chef entre metier at Parisian restaurant Taillevent, a Michelin two-star establishment.
"When I started, there were hardly any culinary schools here ... And there was no chef, it was just the cook. When I got back, there are culinary schools everywhere," said Padilla, who came home recently to judge a cooking competition.

Writing your employment letter hints:

1. Write a comprehensive introductory letter that clearly explains why you are qualified for the job. Don’t just put in a resume, especially one that looks like it was edited three years ago.

2. Spell check! It gives a very bad impression to have wrong spelling or grammar in your application.

3. Be careful when putting attachments that cannot be opened. Case in point: Be careful not to save it in Microsoft Word 2007 format as this is a new format and cannot be opened by companies that are still using Word 2003 or Word 2000.

4. Don’t use an e-mail address with a weird or goofy name.

5. Don’t ask a friend to send or e-mail your application.

6. Specify the job you are applying for. Don’t make the company evaluate what job suits you best.

Congressman Gullas pointed out that those without the English skills were left behind. “

“Around 20 to 30 years ago, even our taxi drivers could speak straight English. Now, many of them have a problem speaking the language clearly,” Gullas said.

Gullas pointed out that in India’s recent economic boom, their citizens with English skills were the ones who benefitted from it. “This is because they are the ones cornering the good-paying jobs,” noted the educator-turned-lawmaker. He said those without the skills were left behind. “Without access to gainful employment, they remain mired in poverty, amid the economic boom there,” he further stated.
Congressman Gullas, Cebu