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Helmut and I are using some of my teaching materials here so he can improve his English. We’ve never spoken English with each other, because I’m an English teacher and there’s always this slight feeling of hierarchy in a teacher-student relationship, which doesn’t do a marriage any good. But here we are, and he wants to work on his skills, so we do. Anyway, the materials I’ve brought along include my very favorite ones, namely a set of grammar cards published by Brain-Friendly Publications, a publisher dedicated to Accellerated Learning, “whole brain” teaching, NLP, Suggestopedia and so on, written and illustrated by a wonderful teacher and teacher trainer, Mark Fletcher. This publisher now has e-books, too, but both my husband and I are hands-on types, and having cards on the table or on the beach towel is simply lovely.

Yesterday he had me in stitches (Freunde, that means: laughing my head off) as we worked with a card that asks the student to make questions to go with answers that are given on a card (and the teacher then needs to answer the questions). The answers Helmut had to work with were:

  • No. I’ve got an awful headache.
  • Very well, thanks. I’m almost finished.
  • You switch it on and press the ‘start’ button.

I’m not going to tell you what his questions were. And, no, I didn’t get the answers “right”.