ELT Playbook 1 and ELT Playbook Teacher Training

These are the first in a series of books designed to help teachers learn to reflect through a series of guided tasks, with the aim of providing professional development support if you don’t have any where you work, or supplementing it if you do.

ELT Playbook 1 cover

ELT Playbook 1 is aimed at new teachers and was self-published in February 2018, edited by Penny Hands (thanks Penny!). Each of the tasks focuses on an area which I believe is particularly challenging for teachers new to the profession, and provides a simple task, a series of reflection questions, and four possible ways to summarise your reflection.

ELT Playbook Teacher Training contains 30 tasks for experienced and new teacher trainers covering areas like the differences between teaching and training, conducting observations, and planning training sessions/workshops/conference presentations. It follows the same format as ELT Playbook 1.

There is also the chance to participate in the #ELTPlaybook online community to get feedback on your reflections and earn badges which you can display on your CV, blog or social media as evidence of continued professional development.

ELT Playbook 1 all badges preview small

You can find out how to buy the books (available as both paperbacks and ebooks) and see sample tasks on the ELT Playbook blog.

Richer Speaking

In April 2016 I published my first ebook, with the help of Lindsay Clandfield and Luke Meddings at the round and editor Karen White.

It’s a book of twelve techniques you can use to adapt speaking activities from coursebooks and activity books, and is part of a mini-series from the round of books which cost no more than 1USD. They’re all on the round’s resources page, and have the same type of cover as mine.

Richer Speaking is available to purchase at Smashwords and Amazon [the latter is a .co.uk affiliate link]. You can access the round page about my ebook by clicking on the image below.

Richer Speaking cover

For publishers

In 2015-2016, I wrote the writing spreads for the B2, C1 and C2 workbooks of the National Geographic Cengage Learning Keynote series of coursebooks, which is based around TED talks. I also wrote Unit 10 of the B2 workbook.

Keynote B2 Upper Intermediate workbook front cover featuring my name and four other authors

In 2011, I wrote the model writing and speaking texts for the New English File Advanced section of Oxford English Testing online extra practice.

In the same year, I also contributed materials to the English File Best Extra competition, which are available via the Oxford Teachers Club. It requires you to log in, but it’s free.

In 2014, Richmond ELT asked me to put together six C1 level listening worksheets for their Skills Boost series. Again, a login is required. It’s free, but takes a few days to activate. [Unfortunately, these are no longer available.]


In addition to this blog and ELT Playbook, I have two other blogs (though I almost never post on them nowadays!):

  • Independent English
    Aimed at students, designed to provide step-by-step guides to things they can do to practise their English outside class. Two of my most popular posts on the blog are based on Quizlet and using podcasts.
  • (Almost) Infinite ELT Ideas
    I share prompts that could be used by teachers as the basis for a class. The idea behind the blog is that readers share their ideas for how to use the prompts, and I then tag the posts based on the ideas that have been generated. Here is an example of a post that generated a lot of ideas, based on post-it notes.

I’ve also written guest posts for other blogs:

  • First Impressions for Ceri Jones
    A lesson plan based on your first impressions of being in a new place.
  • Getting Started for the IATEFL MaWSIG (Materials Writing Special Interest Group)
    About the questions I’ve found it useful to ask a new materials writer (also included in the MaWSIG 2015 ebook, available to members)
  • IATEFL 2016 Presentation Highlights for EFL Magazine
    A selection of my favourite talks from the conference in Birmingham
  • Please let me know if I’ve missed any – I feel like there should be more here!

I was the curator of the IATEFL blog from its inception to September 2018.

IH Journal

International House publishes a journal twice a year. I originally had a column called ‘Developing Teachers‘ in issues 32-38, where I shared ideas for teachers to develop professionally. From issue 39, I started to write on a wider range of different topics.

IH Journal Issue 36 cover

These are my articles:

British Council TeachingEnglish blog posts

I’m a British Council TeachingEnglish Associate blogger. You can read all of my posts for them here.

In other places

My review of the History of English podcast was published in the TEA (Austrian teacher’s association) journal of May 2015. [This journal is no longer available. You can find a copy of my review on my blog.]

In June 2015, I wrote an article for the ETpedia blog called 10 tips to help you become a teacher trainer.

My blogpost Getting started as a materials writer appeared on the MaWSIG blog in December 2015.

I contributed an article to the April 2019 edition of Humanising Language Teaching entitled Stopped teaching? Don’t stop developing.

My blogpost with 4 tips for teaching teens online appeared on the Cambridge University Press blog in April 2020.

I wrote A post-Corona SWOT analysis for the IATEFL Views blog in May 2020.

What’s next?

If you’d like me to do some writing for you, please do not hesitate to get in touch through my blog, or via Twitter. I am also available for consultancy work, including reviewing materials.

[Last updated: September 2021]

5 thoughts on “Writing

  1. Hi Sandy, I’m Italian and teach English. I’ve just found myself here https://sandymillin.wordpress.com/2011/05/15/observe-hypothesize-experiment/ during some research on the actual applicability of the OHE paradigm. Have you come up with something after that post? I know it’s 3 years ago, but I haven’t seen much new stuff around since then. I’m writing on PPP vs OHE in my final dissertation for a teacher training course I’m following. Thanks for your attention. Alberto


    1. Hi Alberto,
      I never did, I’m afraid. Doesn’t seem to come up much anywhere. If you’re on facebook, it might be worth asking on the ‘Teaching English – British Council’ facebook page to see if anyone else has any more information about it. Sorry I can’t be of more help!


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