John McDermott Neill

577 Flips | 4 Magazines | 8 Likes | 2 Following | 406 Followers | @jneilluk | Hi my name is John Neill. Originally from Scotland I now teach English to students from all over Europe. I’m based in the beautiful island of Malta and enjoy the wonderful weather and the warm and friendly Maltese people. I am C.E.L.T.A. qualified and over the last few years have become more and more interested in how the application of technology is changing my students expectations and my own approach to teaching in this ever changing world.

Japanese ‘Ikigai’ Philosophy Could Be the Secret Formula to a Long and Happy Life

Many of us spend our entire lives trying to achieve happiness and the perfect life balance to leave us fulfilled. So what is the key to living a full, fruitful life? In Japan, a concept called <i>ikigai</i> is central to finding one’s satisfaction and meaning in life. In fact, <i>ikigai</i> translates to “reason …

Ikigai

This 100-Year-Old To-Do List Method Promises Maximum Productivity

When you’re writing your to-do list, it’s tempting to write down all the tasks you might <i>possibly</i> get done the following day. But where do you even …

This Amazingly Simple Technique Lets You Learn Anything in 5 Minutes and Remember It Forever

Y Combinator's Michael Nielsen uses a grade school tool to powerfully enhance his learning and retention skills.<p>If you're struggling to master a complex topic, a new language, or anything else that seems to strain your brain, Michael Nielsen has a suggestion for you: Try flashcards. Nielsen is a …

The Only 3 Types of Writing People Actually Want to Read

I remember the first time a piece I wrote was rejected by an editor.<p>The piece I wrote was about my porn addiction in my early teens. It was deeply …

Idiomatic English means Brits struggle to communicate with the world

It's a theory which is bound to put the cat among the pigeons.<p>The British are proud of the idiomatic humour of their language.<p>But an academic has argued that they are actually falling behind because they insist on using phrases that the rest of the world does not understand.<p>Professor Jennifer …

Language

Steve Jobs: This Is the Mindset That Separates Those With Extraordinary Lives From Everyone Else

He said it 22 years ago but it's just as true today.<p>To leave your mark on the world and accomplish truly interesting things, do you need to be rich? Brilliant? Able to take a mental beating and keep on fighting?<p>Not according to Steve Jobs. None of those factors will probably hurt your efforts to be …

How can schools use research to better inform teaching practice?

To tackle misinformation about what works in teaching, schools must find effective ways to help teachers understand the implications of research<p>In the past few years, schools have focused more on the use of research, especially into how pupils learn and the implications on effective teaching.<p>One …

Pedagogy

TO, ON, ABOUT: Prepositions of behavior in English

I know prepositions can be confusing and difficult for people learning English. Even people who have been learning English for many years and who …

How to Improve Your English Writing Skills

If you have try to improve your English writing skills but it’s not work so let’s we have to discuses about the How to improving your English writing …

Writing

22 lessons from Stephen King on how to be a great writer

Renowned author Stephen King writes stories that captivate millions of people around the world and earn him an estimated $17 million a year.<p>In his …

Creative Writing

88 very British phrases that will confuse anybody who didn't grow up in the UK

Every language has a few phrases that don't always translate well — and the British English has some absolute corkers.<p>The team at the Business Insider UK office have compiled a list of the best British slang and idioms that define the weird and wonderful British dialect we grew up with.<p>From our …

Judi Dench

How Working 7-Hour Days Changed My Life

About a month ago, I rode exactly 12 subway stops past my own. I bring this up not to brag about how well traveled I am, or for the sake of …

How Scheduling Just 15 Minutes of “Personal Growth Time” Into Your Calendar Can Change Your Life

Successful people don’t grow by accident, they grow by design.<p>When you schedule personal development time on purpose, you are making time to design the life you want.<p>You are essentially who you create yourself to be.<p>Once you embrace the “growth” habit, you will improve your way of life.<p>You will …

Have fun, full stop: don't worry about errors, let’s learn to love punctuation

It’s worth learning the incomplete rules of English usage – but only as a way to better enjoy breaking them, says punctuation enthusiast Philip Cowell<p>It’s been a funny year for the little dots, strokes and squiggles we call punctuation. In April, a self-described “grammar vigilante”, dubbed the …

Six Items That Should Never Be On Your To-Do List

Classic to-do lists don’t provide context or give a timeline, and they’re easy to ignore. Here’s how to make a better list.<p>Writing a to-do list seems like a tidy little way to keep track of what you need to accomplish, but it can fall short or even derail your success. To-do lists don’t provide …

How I Use Evernote, My Most Essential Free Online Tool

A few weeks ago, I answered a mailbag question from Jim, who wanted to know how I use Evernote. I gave him an answer that <i>almost</i> stretched into …

Productivity

7 Clever Evernote Features to Streamline Your Workflow

Advertisement<p>You probably use Trello for task management A Guide to Trello for Life and Project Management A Guide to Trello for Life and Project …

Time Management Tips That Work

Why is it that the Richard Branson's of this world are rich and famous? What secret do they know that the rest of us don't? If you study their lives closely, you'll discover the rich and famous have certain habits that attribute to their success.<p>Successful people are very careful about how they …

Time Management

Why am I not finding the blog post? Reshaping INDIHOPE

<b>Disclaimer</b><p>Dear Reader, if you have come across here from a different blog post, then it means the blog that you are looking for is no longer …

Books

The Old Prison

This prison on the Maltese island of Gozo is almost 500 years old, and they have the graffiti to prove it.<p>The nation of Malta is an archipelago of 21 …

Why Malta is Europe's hottest new travel destination

When the International Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans and Inter-sex Association (IGLA-Europe) published its annual Rainbow Index ranking the …

Exam board rules on punctuation are wrong, wrong, and wrong

Linguistics expert David Crystal tells Hay festival that school advisers are ‘not aware of complexity of decisions they are asking kids to make’<p>Is that a tall, dark, and handsome man standing over there? Or a tall, dark and handsome man? The vexed question of commas, where to use them and where not …

IELTS Practice and Sample test Materials

Malta: Southern Europe's Best Kept Secret (Part II)

This second part of two features on Malta includes hotel and restaurant recommendations. Malta (Part I) covers my selection of the essential sights on the Maltese islands.<p><b>Where to Stay</b><p>I stayed in four quite different hotels on my February visit, all on the island of Malta, starting with the 150 …

A Guide to Malta: Southern Europe's Best Kept Secret (Part I)

Malta, a group of islands in southern Europe, was certainly not on my radar as a must-visit destination. I’d always imagined it to be an unfashionable, sedate and somewhat fusty kind of place. This can’t be further from the truth. Malta’s entry into the EU in 2004 provided a major boost to the …

A conversation with the world's leading authority on the English language about big data, Google ngrams, and language change

<i>Is the internet ruining the English language? Has the original meaning of "beg the question" been forever lost? Who of all the presidential candidates are closest to being standard speakers of English?</i><p><i>Perhaps the most qualified person to answer these and other questions about English usage is Bryan</i> …

Linguistics

5 Ways to Develop an “Ear” for English Grammar

<b>The structure of every sentence is a lesson in logic</b>.<p>– John Stuart Mill<p>Most forms of English instruction emphasise rules and memorisation; however, I …

13 Writing Lessons From Stephen King’s On Writing

Stephen King is an American author of horror, suspense, science fiction and fantasy, who has sold more than 350 million books. King has received many …

Creative Writing

How to Write an IELTS Essay

In this introductory lesson you will find some guidance on how you should write an <b>IELTS essay</b>.<p>There are then more lessons on the following pages for …

Preparing for the IELTS Writing Test: Best Advice