Alternative English Teaching Jargon From TEFLtastic

Alex Case of TEFLtastic has come up with not one, two, or three, but four separate lists of alternative EFL jargon. Here are a few of my favorites:

  • advanced learner: a proficient user of a foreign language. One who can correct their teacher once or twice a term and still thinks it is clever to do so. A learner who could do so even more but has learnt that they are actually there to learn something and move up to the next level is defined as proficiency level.
  • clause– Clauses are the largest grammatical unit smaller than a whole sentence. Not to be confused with ‘Klaus’, who is the man with the largest waistline ever to attempt to wear leather shorts. [Puts a new spin on Santa, doesn’t it?]

I was also pleased to see a couple of TEFL Logue-coined phrases included too (though I should point out that Alex came up with the definitions):

  • Trinity-kins– Teachers fresh off the Trinity Certificate, with a innocent, childlike enthusiasm still in their eyes

  • CELToids– a new generation of impeccably-trained CELTA-trained pre-teaching machines ready to take over the world

Alex’s creativity got me thinking: Have I made any contributions to TEFL jargon?

No, not really, and I will come clean here too and admit it was a colleague who either coined or told me about “CELToids”. But here are a few runners-up:

Skirmish (think you know what that is? Not in my book), the student heckler and, if I can invent one right now: volunteachers.

There is also a recent list of great new English words, though they are not related to teaching English. Thanks to Alex for incorporating a little TEFL Logue-lese and do direct other EFL jargon to TEFLtastic.