Sunday, January 28, 2007

calling all lurkers: introductions & check in

Hi all,

This is for the lurkers. You know who you joined the blog but do not post. Or maybe you posted once, long ago.

Check in again and let us know you are here. If you haven't introduced yourself yet, do it here and now as a comment to this post.

As for all you active participants, please take this opportunity to welcome the lurkers and encourage them to join in. They are possibly not posting because they feel self-conscious about their writing. Let them know that does not matter and that they are among friends. We value their opinions and want to hear from them.

Let's respond to all who check in and introduce themselves!


  1. Hi all,

    Just a quick reminder. I asked everyone to welcome and encourage those who check in here and introduce themselves.

    That means: wait for them to post.

    In the meantime, you can help best by setting a good example. Do this by posting your discussion comments to our current reading and discussion assignment. Since I also asked for comments and feedback on Common Problems, there's another assignment for you to work on - and example for you to set.

  2. Hello to everybody,

    Today was a pleasure to read your writing your respectable teacher Vanessa, as that gives me courage to get beginning writing about my self.

    I do understand that it is not good to stay as a lurk and not be a part of a class. But I was unsure if in my writing and my formulation of my thoughts. On the other side I thought that I just would confuse them who are unsure like me in stead to give a contribution.

    My name is Besim and I live in Norway with my family. In my native land that is Kosovo, I finished college of mathematics whereas in Norway I finished college of electronics.

    In my country I worked for two years as a teacher of the mathematics whereas here in Norway I am working on the institute for research ( ) form January 2002.

    Here in Norway it is necessarily to pass English exam in such a way that you can register for study on the college or university. Therefore I had to take this exam. Now I will be better in English so I can continue to study the other to year. During studying every time I had reading stuff in English my studying goes slowly and it was of course more difficult work for me.

    But through this Internet site that our dear teacher has done for us I hope and wish to make friends from different country’s, to help each other to be better in English and generally.

    I would like to know how different is English in the UK and the USA?

    In the finish I will thank all who gives contribute here.

  3. Besim

    Thank you for such a detailed and interesting introduction.

    I suppose the ideal situation would be for each learner to read the writing of and write just for someone who didn't make mistakes and would not get confused by the mistakes of others.

    Alas, we do not live in an ideal world. Also, you will be working with non-native speakers who might make mistakes too.

    We'll just have deal with your picking up one another's mistakes, but I really don't think it will be a problem. We are so partial to our own mistakes anyway... hahahaha

    In the meantime, you can use my writing and the readings as models.

    Here's the most important consideration though: can your classmates and co-workers understand what you write? Can you understand what they write?

    When we do peer review, you'll gradually learn to recognize problems in one another's writing and then in your own. It's always easier to see problems in someone else's writing than in your own.

    The more you read and write, the easier writing will become and the better you will write.

  4. Hello everybody!

    My name is Mark. I decided to join to your blog dear Vanessa today.
    I understood this is not good to be as a lurker and I'm ready to begin
    more active participating in our blog class. I was insure about my writing and
    formulation of my thoughts. I know lot words in English but I don't know how to use them. So, I'm going to write a little about myself.
    I live in Israel with my family. My native land is Russia. I finished a college of electronic 24 years ago in Moscow. I'm working in Israel Post Company as technician .Every day I must to read and understand technical documents because I must to improve my English.
    I hope this internet site that our dear teacher has done for us will help me and others.
    In the finish I will thank all who gives contribute here and will excuse me for my mistakes in my writing.


  5. I Have few days that I'm in your Blog. I'm very Happy for this.
    For the moment I'm reading everything here.
    Please give me the time to read , understand and study some of them.
    After that I think that I'll be ready to write and to responce to your requirements of courses.
    I don't know well the tenses.Specialy the Past Tenses.I must to study them more carefully.
    I don't learn in my English school to use the passive Voise. So I must to study the lessons that I have difficulties.

    Also I had ntroduced myself to our class before I get in the blog. Must I ntroduce myself one more time?Let me know about this.

    Ι want to tell you something else .
    I had wrote you some other times in the past but I could not post my message. When I give the order to publish my comment nothing happens.Do you know why? This is the only glitch I have until this time.
    I had prepare some recipes to send you but I had the same problem.

    I'll send my new post as soon as I can.
    Thank you for all and for the opportunity to be in your class.

  6. Hi Mata

    Did you find the verb links on "common problems" helpful. Yhe very best site for studying verbs is EnglishPage. The site has charts, diagrams, tutorials and exercises on aspects of using verbs.

    Verb and verb tense problems take time to master, so be patient. You are not alone: most everyone here has problems with verb tenses. Above all, don't let worrying about verb problems keep you from posting. Just do it.

    Have you ever been early to a party or gathering? When you arrived, someone introduced or you introduced yourself to the guests you didn't now. Then when other guests arrive later, would you say that you don't have to introduce yourself again becauase you already did it?

    Of course not! And not here either. So introduce yourself again.

    Make it an exercise in writing practice and more interesting too: don't just copy the old introduction word for word. Write a fresh, new one from scratch.

    Besides, we all have to do this - in writing or verbally - anytime we write cover letters, change jobs, meet new groups, move, etc. We're not the same people we were last week - we grow and change and so should our introductions

  7. Hi Mark

    I see too that you have started a blog too: Mark ESL

    I see that you're another learner with some mileage. Sadamu has us all beat though.

    Technical reading is harder going than reading for pleasure. Although pleasure reading improves our overall reading skill, technical reading calls for different skills. Among other things, it is intensive, close reading. You are not the only student in the class who needs to improve technical reading skills for work or professional reasons - Ginyin, Rajeev, Besim, who else?

    Lessons in reading technical materials are definitely called for. In the meantime, you might find this page, Comprehending Technical Reading: What Is Technical Material?, helpful

  8. Hi Ms. Vanessa and other new friends in the class,

    Welcome to this class. I am Rajeev from New Delhi, India. I am doing a law course from a University in India. It is regarding Labour laws, Industrial Relations and Administrative Laws. I have to study these three fields and a comparative study of Social Security Laws in USA, UK and India.

    It's good to see that everybody participates in the discussions etc.

    I have been a member of this site for over a year and have been greatly benefitted by the able guidance of Ms. Vanessa and her lessons. Earlier, I had a hesitation to write in English but now I am writing fluently. I don't know whether other people can understand my English or if I am still making some mistakes and if yes, what are those? I request my fellow friends as well as Ms. Vanessa kindly to pin-point the mistakes, if any.

    As regards the Precis, Madam, I apologise for not replying in time as I was quite busy in collecting material for my dissertation, the last date of which is mid-March, 2007. I will do that.



  9. Hi,

    Welcome. My name is Ginyin. I was psychiatry nurse. Now I am a stay-at-home mom of three children. My husband accepted an offer form a college in US. So live in US now. I am planning to go back school for completing master degree of nursing in two years.

    It is nice to see more people get involve our class activities. I am very exicted to read your thoughts because everyone has different background and value. Once we share more different opions, we will became more understanding and open-minded.

    People here are friendly. Each one of you are important to us. Keep writing and giving us your comments, so we can know you more.

  10. Hi All,

    My name is "Pattanee" but can you call me "Ning" is my nick name. I’m un-employ but I’m house-wife and follow my husband work in USA. Right now I’m at Nashville and this Saturday we’re going back to Sweden. After that we’re planning to Thailand couple day vacation and my husband has new contact work at Indonesia. For me I’m looking for work or study some course in Thailand that my home country and close to Indonesia. Because of everywhere when I follow him I can’t work only stay home.

    I looking for work with Travel Company that I have experience before and I love travel. However Vanessa’s give me opportunity when I’m in USA I can study English with her class and know more people in this class and also we’re can change and know more different culture. Once I have own travel blog in Thai but right now I try to do one in English.

    I’m very welcome all friends to visit my blog if want to know travel information in Thailand or in Stockholm you can ask me!!

  11. Hello To everyone,

    I am Anurag from India and working as SAP ABAP programmer.

    Last time when I joined Teacher Vanessa class throgh email but due to my M.Sc. exams I was not able to send my written assignments in time to Teacher.

    So Teacher, Now I am here again with my dedication again and I want to improve my english.

  12. Dear Vanessa!

    I made used of your recommendation for site "Wisconsin Literacy Education and Reading Network Source" and I think this site very helpful for people who will wish to read and comprehend nonfiction. There are very good recommendations for improving reading skills and how rightly to read the technical texts. I not explored this site to the last but I'm hoping there are some good links for practical technical reading.


  13. Hello everybody , specially the new members that they don’t known me
    My name is Matoula. I’m from Greece. I’m 36 years old. I have a family and three children.
    I work in a laundry. It is not easy job but here in my country it is very difficult to find someone job. There is an unemployment. This is a problem that the civil of my country must to solve. I have done a lot of jobs at the past. The most of them was hard. But I had to work to aid my family in a way. Now my children are growing up. It is not necessary to work hard. But I want to help them to the first steps in their own life.
    Some day I want to finish my school. Maybe the next year will be a student again.
    In my free time , I go to the gym , listen music , read school books, papers , and learn English with you. Seldom I like to study Italian. Generally I like to learn things.

    My goals for this year are to write and speak better English than a year before. To learn more words by reading your writing, to write right. Τo learn the grammar better I think is a way to reflect my thoughts more easier. I don’t need the English language for my job. Believe me … when I am working I don’t speak even my own language.☺
    When I finished my Greek school I want to pass the exams at English. I must to get a certificate that here in Greece called ‘Lauer’ and then if I want maybe get another one the ‘Proficiency’.

  14. Mata

    What is the unemployment rate in Greece? What are the causese?

    I have read that the rate in Spain is high too. Although unemployment here is not that high, many of the jobs available are like the ones you work - mostly in the "service" sector. They are not well paid and usually referred to as "dead end" jobs.

    Additionally, education is no longer a sure route to a good job. Students graduate with huge debt but cannot count on getting good jobs or ones with benefits.

    What's the job market like for the rest of you?

    Many commentators link employment problems (high unemployment and low paying service sector jobs) to globalization. What is your experience?

  15. Hi Ms Vanessa and all.

    The bigger wound that faces the youth of Greece is the unemployment. The indicators of unemployment of young persons continuously go up.

    The Greek society it has a rough time by the spectrum of unemployment, make that is elected in the all researches of common opinion. The rate of unemployment in our country, is 8, 8% except however this elements have been disputed very intensely, so much from the EU what from the total of Greek parties. The recent revelation of number of registered unemployeds in the ORGANISATION FOR THE OCCUPATION OF THE WORK FORCE, it reaches the rate of unemployment in the 13, 2%, while exist almost 600 thousands written unemployeds.

    From the all elements that compose the picture of unemployment it results that exceptionally dangerous field is the unemployment of young persons. In that field our country maintains a dreary avant-garde in combination our partners in the European Union, while the unemployment of young persons exceeds the 28%.

    The factors that shape the phenomenon are many with first the factor of non-existence of education connection and training with the job market.

  16. Hi Mata & all

    There's been a lot of discussion about unemployment & how to calculate it. Economists explain the US unemployment figures (just like you pointed out about Greece) do not accurately reflect real employment / unemployment figures. Certain categories of unemployed are not counted. The real unemployment figure is always higher than what the government reports.

    Just out of curiosity, I looked up international employment figures. Of course, those will suffer the same accuracy problems and national figures - and more. How can we compare figures without knowing how they are calulated or whether the same way?

    A couple of charts show break down by gender. Female unemployment is usually much higher that male unemployment. I did not see any charts breaking unemployment down by age but do not doubt that the youngest and oldest workers have the highest unemployment rates.

    Nor do unemployment rates give information about "underemployment" or being employed below one's workplace skill and/or education level.

    Unfortunately, education is not a cure-all for unemployment. If you don't believe me, just ask any cab-driving, burger-flipping PhD in San Francisco. Nor does working a low-paid, dead-end job substitute for one well paid job with benefits, yet both count equally as "being employed."

    If anyone is interested, here are some pages (articles, charts, etc) about unmployment:


    How Is The Unemployment Rate Calculated? (Montana)

    How do world job rates compare? [2000]

    Worldwide Unemployment Figures

    Foreign Labor Statistics

    A visual essay: international labor market comparisons

    World Factbook -
    Unemployment rate


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