Tuesday, November 27, 2012


·         Classic short stories http://classicshorts.com/
·         Page by page books  http://pagebypagebooks.com/
·         American literature  http://americanliterature.com/
·         Free e-books by Project Gutenberg  http://www.gutenberg.org/
·         Stack room  http://www.beststackroom.com/  
·         Loyal Books http://www.loyalbooks.com/  
·         Top documentary films  http://topdocumentaryfilms.com/  
·         Films for action http://www.filmsforaction.org/
·         Randall’s ESL cyber listening lab http://esl-lab.com/   
·         Lyrics training http://lyricstraining.com/
·         ESL lounge  http://www.esl-lounge.com/premium/listening.php
·         Listening comprehension and note taking http://www.uefap.com/listen/exercise/exlis.htm
     Voscreen http://www.voscreen.com/ 
·         Slow English http://slowenglish.info/
·         Buzzle   http://www.buzzle.com/  
·         VOA learning English http://learningenglish.voanews.com/
     Quick and Dirty tips http://www.quickanddirtytips.com/health-fitness/mental-health/how-to-tell-if-someone-is-lying 
      Famous speeches delivered by President Barrack Obama http://www.americanrhetoric.com/barackobamaspeeches.htm
       Speeches http://www.americanrhetoric.com/  
     Educational videos to base writing on https://www.youtube.com/user/crashcourse/playlists 
·         Poetry foundation http://www.poetryfoundation.org/features/audiolanding
·         Listen to poetry https://www.englishclub.com/listening/poetry.htm
      ·         Story Corps https://storycorps.org/  
·         Jokes in levels http://www.jokesinlevels.com/  
·         The Royal Society of Arts https://www.thersa.org/discover/videos/
·         BBC Radio podcasts http://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/p02nrtpm/episodes/downloads
      TRT World http://www.trtworld.com/  (Suggested by Yahya Doğan)
·         Learning English with Jennifer https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PL0A0C8CFFE9712B76
·         Learning American English online https://www.youtube.com/user/learnamericanenglish/videos
·         James ESL English lessons https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCwA7Aepp7nRUJNa8roQ-6Bw
·         Check the ribbon on the right in the third link for more video lessons on engVid
      Fun with grammar  http://theproproom.blogspot.com.tr/2015/10/fun-with-grammar-watch-listen-and-learn.html
      SCIENCE NEWS FOR STUDENTS https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/us-army-developing-high-tech-underwear (Suggested by: Müge Uysal, my assistant)
·         Memrise http://www.memrise.com/courses/english/english/
·         The learning network
     ·  Suggest a topic
Pew Research Center http://www.pewresearch.org/
·         National geographic life http://www.ngllife.com/content/reading-texts-word
·         English Online:  http://www.english-online.at/  Explore the options on the site
·         VOA Learn English http://learningenglish.voanews.com/p/5610.html
Scroll down to the bottom of the page and explore
·         ESL lounge http://www.esl-lounge.com/level1breadwrite.php  Explore the site; there is lots you can do
       Breaking News English http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/  
·         BBC Learning English http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/multimedia/london/   
·         CNN Student News http://edition.cnn.com/studentnews
·          Easy reading for ESL beginners http://www.rong-chang.com/ne/
·        English for intermediate learners http://www.rong-chang.com/qa2/
·         University of Victoria study zone http://web2.uvcs.uvic.ca/elc/studyzone/index.htm
·         Teach Ya English for free  http://www.teachya.com/
·         News in levels  http://www.newsinlevels.com/
·         Times in plain English http://www.thetimesinplainenglish.com/wp/
       Research Digest  https://digest.bps.org.uk/
·         AEON http://aeon.co/magazine/science/  
·         Wired  http://www.wired.com/
·         Scientific American  http://www.scientificamerican.com/
·         Nature  http://www.nature.com/  
·         Psychology Today https://www.psychologytoday.com/
·         The Guardian http://www.theguardian.com/international
·         The Daily Telegraph  http://www.telegraph.co.uk/
·         The Wall Street Journal http://www.wsj.com/europe
·         The Atlantic  http://www.theatlantic.com/world/
·         The New York Times http://www.nytimes.com/  
·         Huffington Post  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/
·         BBC  http://www.bbc.com/news
       CNN http://edition.cnn.com/
·         VS Test Your Word Knowledge http://my.vocabularysize.com/  (This site enables teachers to prepare vocabulary tests and students to learn and practice through vocabulary games)
  Learner’s Vocabulary Quiz http://learnersdictionary.com/quiz/vocabulary-start      SUMMARY WRITING
·         How to write a summary https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eGWO1ldEhtQ
·         Summary writing: Learn how to write a summary https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VwEl-MiZH0E
·         Note making https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mKKi0UlrHsk
Note making: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=m9jgHocI5Zw
      Online Collocation Dictionary http://www.freecollocation.com/ 

·         Coursera https://www.coursera.org/
·         EdX  https://www.edx.org/home
·         Future Learn  Join 5,744,331 people learning together at Future Learn. Try high quality online education – enjoy free online courses from top universities and specialist organisations.
·         Udacity https://www.udacity.com/  


Sustainable Development basically means meeting the human needs without harming the environment. The world has tended to produce new sustainable things since people became aware of unplanned urbanization and global warming. These days, people are debating a question that is how to save the world? However, there are various measures that should be taken to create a new world.
The first solution to save the world is saving the water. Humans need water like all living things but we are consuming it wastefully. For example, in agricultural irrigation farmers can use distilling water technology to avoid wasting water. Another example is to generate harvesting rain water systems for homes and buildings. In this way, people can gather the rain water and disinfect it before allowing it to mix in the soil.
The second is creating more bright green cities. One way to achieve this aim is to make zero energy buildings which are using smart green technology. For example, solar panels, smart light switches which can control themselves according to sunlight and smart heating and cooling systems to minimize energy use. Another way is growth management. When cities are growing, nature should not be changed and population must be controlled against the rapid growth.
The last solution is changing the political perspectives. Obviously, The Kyoto Protocol does not work completely and effectively. Governments have to strive for prevent global warming and uncontrolled urbanization. Governments' approaches are very important to run a green policy. For example they can strengthen the law against factory waste, inappropriate structures, illegal hunting and they can improve renewable energy systems.
Finally, there are several measure to create a sustainable world. Living in a new world is not impossible if we save the water, protect nature, practice energy saving policies and change the political approaches. These solutions are very important to provide sustainability.
Fatih Ok


              Whereas everybody wants to live happily and in good health in the world,diseases are also the reality of life.Indeed,when people are sick,they are cured to get better. Neverthless,in some conditions,treatments cannot be helpful for the patient because of fatal diseases.In such situations,dying patients need to be comfortable and peaceful rather than forced to take medicine.Therefore,humane-end-of-life practices should be legal to reduce the levels of pain for the sufferer.
            To begin with,humane-end-of-life practices should be legal in order to allow the patient to die a dignified death.Actually,endeavoring to treat the terminally ill patient only means prolonging his suffering.The dying patient wants to live his last days calmy and without pain.For example,he wants to spend his time with his loved ones by doing entertaining activities and laughing a lot.In such circumstances,the patient should be provided with the opportunity spend the rest of his life comfortably rather than giving more pain to the sufferer or proceeding with chemotherapy.
            On the other hand,some argue that doctors will lose huge incomes if terminally ill people are cured by using the resources of hospitals.Naturally,every form of treatment generates new income to private hospitals since patients pay enormous costs for medicine.They are right to some extent.However,doctors already get sufficient revenue to live comfortably.In fact,they are employees who get the highest salaries in society.For instance,if they operate on anybody,they get $2.000 at least in private hospitals.Humane-end-of-life practices do not have an adverse impact on the revenue of doctors.In addition,the income of a doctor cannot be compared with the last days of a person.
             Taking everything into consideration,legalizing humane end-of-life practices will be beneficial for dying patients in many respects.They are provided with a dignified death.Patients have a right to die in whatever they want.And people should die so honorably.
                                         BÜŞRA ÜNLÜ INT/REMEDIAL

Sunday, November 25, 2012


In contrast to what many people assume, slavery is still rampant all around the world even though it is illegal. So, why people don’t pay attention to that problem and why we still know very little about it is hard to understand. To understand how people suffer from the slave trade, it is important to know the details of what exactly they are forced to do.
Firstly, I would like to explain in what conditions slaves are forced to to work. They have to work for 17 or 18 hours a day without any break, in very hot and dusty weather. For example, the ones who work as miners stay under the ground and in the dark for 72 hours. They have no guarantee that after that 72 hour period they will be able to get to the surface and that they won’t get injured or even die before seeing the sunlight. A body covered with sweat, in the dark, dusty air and voices of coughing everywhere… that is the life of the coal miner slaves. If we take slaves in the textile sector as another example, we could say that their conditions are no different from the former. They also have to spend all their lives working without any pay and being terrified of the masters, suffering from diseases caused by the toxic paints and dyes.
Secondly, it is also not important whether the slave is young or old, male or female. Everyone suffers from the same circumstances and everyone has the same destiny. Some children are even born as slaves. There are child slaves all around the world carrying stones that weigh more than themselves or going fishing at 1 o’clock in the morning without even knowing how to swim. Just like the children, women are also forced to obey the unwritten rules of slavery. They can be seen on plantations, in gold mines or in brothels. They have fear, no hope of running away and no reason to be happy.
Lastly, why are we not aware of this problem? I am personally ashamed of my lack of knowledge. People suffer whereas we sit and enjoy our freedom. Some people would say that it is impossible to free them unless you are a citizen of the country that they belong to and they would be right but there is also something that they don’t see. There are lots of organizations such as “Free The Slaves”, and with their help some slaves get their freedom back every year. What we can do is be sensitive, learn about the details of the issue and pay attention tot his illegal trade. They just want support. At least that is something we can do,isn’t it?
To sum up, many people think that slavery is not a global problem at present but they are actually wrong. The number of slaves is not decreasing even though slavery is forbidden everywhere. The cause of such thoughts is that they don’t know enough about slavery, about their working conditions and about their suffering. What should be done is research the problem and spread awareness all around the world.
Öykü İlayda Uzunlu
Advanced, November 2012


The ongoing social media revolution is changing the realities of classic journalism as evidenced by the new trends in television programs like i-report on CNN or invitations to individuals to contribute to the news. Does this development mean the end of classic journalism? The facts on the ground as far as proponents are concerned are as follows:
1.       Social networking sites like Twitter are much faster; news spreads like wild fire (For example, President Obama hugging Michelle Obama)
2.       This form of reporting is fun
3.       Reporters and the public are all part of a global conversation
4.       It leads to the creation of a more culturally, politically and socially aware society
This being said, opponents do have certain reservations the most important of which are as follows:
1.       Faster isn’t always better
2.       Faster isn’t always right
3.       Some important issues may get sidelined
At this point, it is suggested that you research the topic – both videos and written material. Having done so write an argumentative essay on the subject.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


By: George Friedman
Published: Stratfor, October 12, 2012; www.stratfor.com Alternatively,just google the title and writer’s name.
Level of Difficulty: ****
It is suggested that you watch a few videos on current American foreign policy and take some notes before tackling the text.
  1. What does “it” refer to in the phrase “it is real”  at the end of paragraph 1? Be explicit.
  2. What do the threats listed in paragraph 2 have in common?
  3. What does “such a prospect” in the phrase “even though such a prospect appears possible” in paragraph 3 refer to?
  4. In hindsight, the US might have been wrong to topple Saddam Hussein for the following two reasons: ....................................................................................................................................
  5. How did Iran benefit from the conflict?
  6. The writer says that at the beginning the US wanted to stay out of the conflict in Libya despite the arguments of the French because ...........................................................................
  7. The US later went back on this policy of noninterference for fear of .........................................
  8. What pipe-dream was seen to be wrong as a result of Libya and Iraq?
  9. Campaigns designed to topple brutal dictators can ultimately negatively impact the US because .......................................................................................................................................
  10. The Us is declining to interevene in Syria specifically because ...................................................
  11. What change in the status quo in the Middle East does the US not desire?
  12. What, in the US view, would make intervention by Turkey or Saudi Arabia more Practicle?
  13. Efforts to resolve the conflict in Syria have reached a stale mate bacause ...................................................................................................................................................
  14. We understand from paragraph 14 that ............................................... is a last resort for the US.
  15. What does “this doctrine” in the phrase “if maintained, this doctrine will force the world...” in paragraph16 refer to?
  16. What is the contradiction in the attitude of many to the new US doctrine?
  17. What does “this” refer to in the sentence “This is a maturation of US policy not a degredation.”?
  18. This change in US foreign policy is taking place due to the fact that  the Us is .....................
  19. What exactly is it that “will upset the international system, especially US allies”
  20. Read the last two paragraphs. Will the next president of the US  continue such a foreign policy or revert to the former one? How do you know?
To what extent do you support the change in US foreign policy? Discuss. Refer back to the text and the notes you made while watching videos.
This very topical text should lead to plenty of discussion. A video beforehand to start the ball rolling would be a good idea.
  1. A doctrine in which the US doesn’ take primary responsibility.
  2. They are threats that challenge the US fundemental interests.
  3. A direct imposition of US naval power.
  4. The US destroyed the regional balance of power with Iran; the US miscalculated the consequences of the invation and faced substantial resiastance.
  5. It gained power and a greater sense of security.
  6. Libya did not represent a threat to the US.
  7. Breaking with its coalition.
  8. That campaigns designed to topple brutal dictators yield better regimes.
  9. Intervention can unleash virulently anti-American forces.
  10. Any US intervention in Syria would constitute both an effort and a risk disproportinate to those interests.
  11. Tehran’s influence streching through Iraq to the mediterranian.
  12. They had far greater leavers to determine the outcome in Syria.
  13. No country was prepared to use conventional military force.
  14. War with Iran
  15. Not everything that happens in the world requires or justifies US intervention.
  16. Many who condemn US hegemony also seem to demand it.
  17. Moving from military domination to more sbtle manipulation and more important allowing events to take their cource.
  18. Overextended.
  19. Controlled engagement on the part of the US based on a realistic understanding of the national interest.
  20. He will continue it. No one decides this new doctrine; it is emerging from the reality the US faces.


Füsun Savcı has alerted me to the following website: imdbfree.com where you can watch movies with English subtitles for free. It looks fabulous. Enjoy...

Monday, November 5, 2012


Furkan Alpay, a student in pre-intermediate H this year, has provided the following links for free audio books he says he downloads and listens to during his long commute to school.



Betty Caplan has sent in the following link which will interest all of us. Take a look:


Teaching is a very multi-faceted act with cognitive, emotional, social, ethical, intra and interpersonal components. For this reason, the question of what good teaching entails is a very complicated one. The answer, like the subject at hand, also has many dimensions to it. Danielson is among the educators who attempted to break teaching into its components with the intention of clarifying it for all the stakeholders of learning environments, that is mainly schools, how good teaching manifests itself in concrete, observable, and tangible ways. She divided the concept of good teaching into four domains:  Planning& Preparation (Demonstrating Knowledge of Content and Pedagogy, Demonstrating Knowledge of Students, Setting Instructional Outcomes, Demonstrating Knowledge of Resources, Designing Coherent Instruction, and Designing Student Assessments), Classroom Environment (Creating an Environment of Respect and Rapport, Establishing a Culture for Learning, Managing Classroom Procedures, Managing Student Behaviour, and Organizing Physical Space), Professional Responsibilities (Reflecting on Teaching, Maintaining Accurate Records, Communicating with Families, Participating in a Professional Community, Growing and Developing Professionally, and Showing Professionalism)  and Instruction (Communicating with Students, Using Questioning and Discussion Techniques, Engaging Students in Learning, Using Assessment in Instruction, and Demonstrating Flexibility and Responsiveness). 
Danielson aimed to offer a guideline for multiple purposes through her framework: self-assessment, teacher preparation, recruitment& hiring, mentoring, peer coaching, supervision and evaluation. (Alvarez and Anderson-Ketchmark, 2011, p61)).Being able to make use of Danielson’s framework for all these purposes necessitates the collaboration of teachers and administrators for the common aim of improving instruction. Firstly, all people on board have to be convinced that ‘effective teachers are the greatest school-based contributors to improved student outcomes, and that teachers can be empowered and become more effective by receiving consistent feedback on classroom instruction. (Olivia, Mathers and Laine, 2009, p17) Once this notion becomes part of the general school culture, the framework can be used as a practical guide to improve the quality of teaching and learning.
I had the privilege of starting my teaching career at an institution with a strong commitment to provide all its teachers, especially the less experienced ones, with the opportunity to receive constant feedback on instruction and constant training in needed areas. This was achieved in multiple ways. The institution had a well-trained team of teacher trainers who would give work-shops and in-service training courses to teachers. These workshops offered both theoretical and practical input, keeping the teachers up to date about current research and practices in line with the findings of research on teaching and learning. The trainees were expected to plan at least one lesson but mostly a series of lessons that manifested their learning of the content. The trainers met the trainee before and after the actual teaching of that lesson and provided feedback and suggestions on how to improve the lesson in the former and on how to improve delivery of that lesson in the latter meeting. I, personally, found this an invaluable experience as it gave me great confidence to enter the classroom with lesson plans that were based on strong theory and years of practice. I felt safe that I would be able to benefit from the years long experience of the teacher trainer and be spared the burden of spending years trying to discover all that myself.
Another wonderful thing about the teacher training service was the opportunity to work with many trainers throughout the year but have one mentor who would oversee the progress and the needs during that time. Having multiple trainers would mean co-training, which meant constant training on evaluation and how to give feedback for the trainers, too.
The opportunity to receive feedback on instruction also included peer-observation, team-teaching (sharing lesson plans, practical tips, a professional article addressing a need, and mini-workshops taught by peers) and peer coaching. It was quite common to approach a more experienced teacher and ask to observe a lesson with a focus on an area you felt you needed improvement in. This focus could be as simple as blackboard or technology use, or methods of engaging the students in a reading activity. This observation would always be followed by a reflection meeting on what you have learned and what you would like to put into practice in your teaching. Depending on the time available to both parties, the more experienced teacher could also observe a lesson by the less experienced one focusing on the same area and provide feedback afterwards.
Looking back now at the teacher evaluation system used at that institution, I see many strengths. Firstly, even the initially skeptic would come to see the benefits of working with a more experienced and more knowledgeable teacher after the first experience. When one realizes that the burden that comes from limited experience and limited training is lessened thanks to this professional exchange, one becomes fully devoted to the process. Once consensus is reached on the necessity of the continuous cycle of training and evaluation, cooperation of all stakeholders is guaranteed. Sometimes this process would make you feel exposed and require you to take on extra course work or mean more observations and harder work, but the process definitely made your life in the classroom when alone with the students easier and in a much shorter time. In other words, that institution managed to create a culture of professional development and a strong belief along the following premise:
“If the education system cannot provide meaningful, ongoing and summative feedback to teachers, it relinquishes significant opportunities to influence teacher practice and student achievement. Given the overwhelming evidence that teachers have the greatest impact on student outcomes, supporting their ongoing growth and development should be a priority.” (Olivia, Mathers, and Liane, 2009, p20)
Based on that positive experience in my first work place and the research I have done on the possible ways of using Danielson’s Framework for Teaching, I strongly believe that administrators can and should play a crucial role in improving instruction in their institutions by creating a culture of dedication to professional development and working as a team. This cannot be done alone. The cooperation of teachers and their motivation must be ensured for this to be realized. As one school principal Kim Marshall came to realize one day, even if a great deal of a principal’s time is devoted to classroom observations, his evaluations were bound to be ‘based on grossly inadequate information’,  therefore be superficial and often miss the target’ and be ‘paid little attention to’. After this realization, he spent a great deal of time on thinking this problem through. As a leadership coach now for new principals and a teacher of courses on leadership and the publisher of a weekly newsletter that summarizes theoretical and practical input from over 40 publications, he has invaluable ideas on how to empower teachers by evaluating their teaching in the most effective ways.
He is a strong believer of rubrics around clearly set domains of teaching. This, he believes, makes it clear for everyone what is meant by excellent teaching, good teaching and teaching that needs improvement. He also suggests introducing these domains or working on them one by one rather than all at once. A very important area of concern that he brings up is the danger of evaluating a teacher’s performance based on a few lesson plans. What he offers instead is to gather impressions of every teacher throughout the whole school year by being ‘in classrooms, corridors, and team meetings and at other school events on a daily basis.’ He suggests frequent and unannounced mini-observations and follow-up face-to-face conversations after them to offer feedback to the teacher in addition to announced full-lesson observations. One other important component of teacher-evaluation is self-assessment of the teacher. Getting the teacher to assess their own performance across the rubric is a good way to enable them to become more self-reliant and self-aware in terms of recognizing their weaknesses, strengths and areas that need improvement. Given that the principal can spend relatively much less time with the teacher, getting the teachers to become their own coaches is a logical idea. Marshall calls this process “installing a supervisory “voice” in teachers’ heads so they are always monitoring and improving their performance’’. In this way, evaluation and actions for improving instruction can be an ongoing process at all times.
The evaluation of the principal also has to have a practical application, in other words, it has to lead to a concrete course of action. I am strong believer in showing recognition to sustain motivation in individuals and in teams. If the principal’s evaluation of a teacher after a course of one academic year has been very positive, that teacher must receive some kind of recognition: a letter of congratulations, a small award, a promotion or a leadership role in teacher development. If a teacher has been identified to need further development in certain areas, the principal has to take on the role of a supervisor. Marshall points out the necessity of taking on this role as such:
“It is an important legal and ethical responsibility for principals to give struggling teachers a detailed diagnosis, specific recommendations, and a chance to improve.” (p11)
The teacher who has been evaluated has to know very clearly what areas need development and why based on the clearly stated rubric and also what action must be taken in a realistically set time frame. (Marshall, 2006, p 8-12) If this guidance is not provided, the evaluation process can not lead to a constructive end. It would be a soul destroying and de-motivating experience. This may mean a reluctance to take any steps for professional development, which would be a waste of that person’s potential. In other words, encouragement is the key to ensuring teacher development and improving instruction.
In addition to self-evaluation and evaluation by the principal, having multiple evaluators and engaging peers and teacher mentors in the process should also be tried. It is crucial that all evaluators be trained inn understanding of the rubric, the rationale behind the process, the keys to effective and constructive communication and meet the standards of good teaching themselves. (Olivia, Mathers, and Liane, 2009, p 18). The same point about using multiple evaluators is raised in the report of a project called  ‘Enhancing Administrators’ Capacity for Leadership by Improving Evaluation Practices and Processes Project” in which the researchers recommend that school and district administrators rely on multiple evaluators ensure validity as well as objectivity and  use a rubric with clear standards. The report also points out the need to continuously train evaluators on best teaching practices. Evaluation of peers, students and parents as well as teacher leaders competent in the content area and pedagogy is recommended to provide multiple perspectives.   (Mathes, Mixon, and Trutzel Betts, 2009, pp106-110)
It is obvious that the role of administrators in improving the quality of education is immense. They are in the position to create a culture of continuous development and evaluation of practices. Their position of authority enables them to, and their responsibility requires them to establish effective means of doing so. For this, they may need to allocate funds to pay for training programs and factor training, observation and mentoring hours as part of a teacher’s workload.
The teacher’s role in all this is complementary. The teacher has to be convinced of the need to collaborate in this process in order to be more fulfilled professionally and to operate at a much more informed, competent and effective level in time. This is related to Danielson’s domain of Professional Responsibilities which includes Participating in a Professional Community and Growing and Developing Professionally. Commitment to these two principles should give one the motivation to work on one’s professional development. What would sustain this, I think, would be a belief that, by doing so, one would become more proficient in one’s job and experience great moments of satisfaction, joy and bliss. This is what Mihaly Csikszentmihalyi calls flow: “state of effortless concentration and enjoyment” and total absorption in what one is doing and is a stronger supporter of one’s quality of life than even happiness or being devoid of serious problems. Acts that require creativity and the use of skills which can develop over a long period of time -if carried out with clear aims and a clear time frame - help to experience this uplifting feeling.
Another necessary feature is this: the feedback on one’s performance has to be immediate and the task has to be challenging enough to make it interesting and engaging and not challenging enough to make it frustrating.
Most of these conditions are present in the act of teaching and all can be present in carefully designed teacher training or mentoring programs. Teacher trainers can help the teacher set realistic goals in increasing complexity, for example. Feedback from students is immediate, it is right there in the air. More formal forms of feedback can be collected at the end of a lesson from the students and the teacher trainers can schedule meetings as soon as possible after the actual teaching.
 Teaching is one such profession that is inherently conducive to experiencing this state of flow. If one can find such moments of flow on a daily basis through one’s job, it should be considered a privilege because most employment today is not more than a means to put bread on the table. Consumerism and capitalism have resulted in a strong alienation from what one is doing and often the individual has very little say about the nature of that job.
The fact that teaching has many dimensions to it, as Danielson clearly lays out, means there is always room to acquire better skills and deeper insights in any one of the domains and in any one of its components. The creative and intelligent use of these skills in a well-orchestrated manner itself can produce flow, and help the teacher feel “flashes of intense living against the dull background of everyday life.” (Csikszenmihalyi)
There is one other item on Danielson’s framework that I find to be extremely and equally crucial: engaging students in learning. This is the component that can create flow on the part of the learners and thus feed into the teacher’s experience of flow and increase the teacher’s motivation to improve instruction.
One of my colleagues - a very effective, engaging, encouraging, caring, and conscientious teacher- is an excellent example to making sure everyone experiences flow in the lesson. She has her own blog (http://the proproom.blogspot.com) in which she shares her ideas about teaching and the materials she has developed. She stays current and prepares new materials all the time. The planning and implementation of lessons, to her, is a joy. She also makes sure it is as engaging and interesting for the students. This is her advice to increase student motivation and engage them in the learning process:
“1.Avoid all formulas, lists of rules, set procedures, clichés, teaching patterns and all routine. In short, don’t get into a rut and go plodding along all year.  It didn’t work in secondary school and it won’t work now.2.Be imaginative, unpredictable and inventive. Vary the ways you approach a topic and never state the rules; instead let them deduce them.3.They won’t necessarily enjoy reading or writing about what you may want them to so prepare to be flexible.4.Never, ever forget that you are also an entertainer, a stand-up comedian and a source of useless knowledge. Most importantly, 5. Enjoy yourself! If you don’t, they won’t either; and you can kiss good bye to any learning.” (Hekimgil, 2012)

There is so much to be gained from a commitment to improving instruction. Teachers and administrators need to stand back and make an informed decision based not on outside pressures but on free-will on how they can make that possible. It is true that we live in an age which expects us to perform our best without necessarily being able to take a deep breath and ask ourselves why we are doing that and what we are getting out of it rather than proving we are OK enough. This is soul destroying and kills all the joy we could be getting from doing our jobs right and reaping the benefits in many ways: increased student motivation and performance and many moments of flow throughout the days of each academic year.
 Inherently driven motivation to improve our skills and help others to increase their skills outlined  in the Four Domains of Framework for Teaching by Danielson can and will create wonders in our professional lives and in the lives of everyone we touch.

1.       Alvarez, Michelle E. and Anderson-Ketchmark, Corrine. Danielson’s Framework for Teaching. Children&Schools. January 2011. Volume 3, Number 1
2.       Csikszentmihalyi, Mihaly. Finding Flow. Psychology Today. 1997. Last reviewed on June 14, 2012       http://www.psychologytoday.com/articles/199707/finding-flow
3.       Hekimgil, Feride.  An Elusive Quality: Motivation. Humanizing Language Teaching. August 2012
4.       Marshall, Kim. The Why’s and How’s of Teacher Evaluation Rubrics. Edge. 2006
5.       Mathes, Staci M, Mixon , Sharon Andrea, Trutzel Betts, Tricia T. Enhancing Administrators’ Capacity for Leadership by Improving Evaluation Practices and Processes Project. Proquest Dissertations and Theses. 2009. Proquest Education Journals
6.       Olivia, Michelle, Mathers, Carrie and Laine, Sabrina. Effective Evaluation. Principal Leadership. March 2009: Proquest Education Journals, p16