John Hird

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John ECP coach

John Hird

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Birthday: 30th November 1961

Background: I was born in Newcastle in the North East of England. After working in London as a campaigner for youth rights I came to Vitoria-Gasteiz for the Fiestas and the sun! I have worked as an English trainer since 1992 specialising in Business English, content creation, on-line learning and telephone English. I have also worked in Bosnia and Saudi Arabia. I have a Master in the Teaching of English as a Foreign Language from the university of Jaén and am accredited as a teacher trainer by International House.

Why I’m an English Coach: This is more than just a job. I’m not just a ‘profesor de inglés’. Teachers and students together are all learning how to learn. A teacher can learn a lot from their students as well if they are prepared to listen and be open minded. I try to follow Bruce Lee’s advice: “A good teacher can never be fixed in a routine… each moment requires a sensitive mind that is constantly changing and constantly adapting.”

Advice to learners: Put yourself into as many communicative situations as you can. Don’t be shy and live the language!

Other interests: Languages, Internet, films, politics, Newcastle United Football Club and ‘El Glorioso’ Alavés.

Favourite colours: Black, white, red.

Favourite book: Germinal – Emile Zola.

Favourite movie: Manhattan – Woody Allen.

Favourite TV programmes: Mad Men, The Wire, The Sopranos.

Favourite food: Basque, Indian, Bosnian, Chinese, Arab and Italian.

Favourite quote: “Nihil humani a me alienum puto.” [Nothing human is alien to me] – Terence.

My favourite songs: 
You Make Me Feel So Young – Frank Sinatra
Aita Semeak – Oskorri
Atmosphere – Joy Division

My favourite links:
Ethnologue: Languages of the World
When Saturday Comes
BBC Radio 4