Canada, Montreal

Les rues animées et les beaux parcs de Montréal sont merveilleux, l’été! La plupart de ces photos ont été prises sur le Plateau ou au centre-ville.



Hong Kong, Japan, South Korea, Thailand, Travel, Vietnam

Here are some of my favorite pictures from South Korea, Thailand, Vietnam, Hong Kong, and Japan. They were taken between 1996 and 2006. My first trip abroad was when I went to teach English in South Korea in 1996. Daniel and I also had a chance to explore other countries when we lived in Shanghai, from 2003 to 2006.

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China, Travel

Daniel and I lived in Shanghai for three years, from 2003 to 2006. Our life there was filled with new friends, amazing sights, delicious food, professional opportunities, trips to other places in Asia, and of course the occasional sensory overload… Here are some of my favorite pictures from that magical time. You can see more pictures on my Flickr page.

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Language Acquisition, Learning English, Learning French, Teaching


I want to share this video where Stephen Krashen, an authority on second-language acquisition, demonstrates what comprehensible input is. And he explains that it’s the only way people acquire a language – we’ve tried everything else!

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There are at least three different new year’s celebrations in Thailand, including the first of January, Chinese New Year, and Songkran, the actual Thai new year, in April. Here are a few pictures from the January 1st celebration at temples, and also at a bar.

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Life in Chiang Mai is good. Not perfect – nothing is – but we like it here… There’s a reason this city is a hub for digital nomads. It’s easy to find good accommodation at reasonable prices, the food is awesome (who doesn’t love Thai food!), fresh fruit is plentiful and inexpensive, the city has a laid-back feel, the narrow streets are filled with tropical trees and flowers, there are beautiful temples everywhere, and the cats tend to look happy, which says a lot about how people treat them… :) I’ll let my pictures speak!

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So while living in Thailand has lots of advantages, one aspect that can be annoying is the visa issue. Residents of Thailand have to leave the country often in order to extend their stay in the Land of Smiles. We did just that last weekend: a day-trip to Myanmar.

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People learning French often say that sentences sound like one long word. How do you know where one word ends and another begins?

The big reason for this is the linkings called “enchaînements” and “liaisons”. These are not only normal, but actually required in French. When a word begins with a vowel sound, if you haven’t done an “elision”, you will normally do a “liaison” or an “enchaînement”. This means that a word that starts with a vowel, such as “ami”, will actually start with a consonant sound.

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Songs are a fun way to improve your listening skills and pronunciation. My students have used this method, and so have I. It has helped me achieve excellent pronunciation in Spanish, and I’ve been complimented on my pronunciation and reading speed in Korean, even though I’m a beginner! Here’s how to do it.

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Welcome to my blog! My name is Helene, and I’m passionate about languages, teaching, and travel. (Read more...)