About @ij64

About me

My name’s Ian James and I’m a teacher of English as a foreign language. Originally from Cardiff, I now work at the Foreign Language Service of the Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona. I have also taught English at International House and the British Council. I arrived in Barcelona in 1988 after graduating in Political Science at Leicester University.

Self-taught in HTML, CSS, Dreamweaver, Photoshop and Flash, I flirted with web design in the late nineties and early noughties. However, I threw in the towel when it became clear that everybody else had become a web designer too. Apart from things techie, my other interests include music (Ron Sexsmith, Rufus Wainwright, The Divine Comedy, Sufjan Stevens etc), photography, collecting thimbles and pricking balloons. I also have a weekend retreat (known as The Ruin) deep in the Catalan Pre-Pyrenees where I enjoy chopping wood, hugging trees and drinking wine on the terrace in front of the house.

I hope you find the blog useful,

Ian James


32 Responses “About @ij64” →
  1. Hugging trees?

    Are there only 2 schools in Barcelona? You all seem to hail from IH or British Council :-)


    • Yes, it’s a strange coincidence, Karenne. In fact, there are only 3 of us teaching in Barcelona these days. Tree hugging means getting close to nature and far from tech.

  2. Hey Ian,
    So, where were you & your great teaching ideas when I was teaching at IH Lisbon? And…how r u??
    Bé from Flatland

    • My God! Is that LPC Bé? How many years has it been? How did you find me? How’s life treating you in Utrecht? Hope the theatre work is going well! :-) Ian

      • Hi, I’m not the quickest replyer…had forgotten all about my message to you, but then I was reading the news about the terrorist attack in Barcelona and thought of the people I know in Barcelona – also you. How are you? Are you affected in any ways by the attack? I can’t remember how I found you7 years ago, I guess your first name, your last name and Barcelona…?

  3. Andikona

    March 25, 2010

    What’s political science got to do with teaching EFL?

  4. Hi Ian,
    I really like your blog, excelent ideas. Well done and keep up the good work. Cheers, Kieran


  5. Pascal Shaw

    April 7, 2010

    Great blog…….I just need to find the time to read it ,-)

  6. Hey Ian
    What an impressive blog !!! That’s what I want to do when I’m a grown-up … Good stuff, thanks for the great ideas I’ll use in my English classes … and if Laura fancies a French version, let me know !!!

    • Thanks Manu! I am indeed flattered! As for a French version, from what I’ve heard I think there may be a pretty big niche out there i.e. not a lot of competition!


  7. Javier Sánchez

    April 8, 2010

    Estupendo blog, Ian, ya he comentado en nuestro Ning que me parece fantástico y la única pena para nosotros, los de español, es que las tareas están en inglés aunque algunas se pueden adaptar. Enhorabuena y saludos.


  8. Alex Vraciu

    May 4, 2010

    I absolutely love your blog! Hope you don’t mind my classes becoming Ian Jamesian very soon ( no need to “steal” the famous question sheets from the photocopier anymore!!!). Keep up the good work, Ian, but don’t put all your heart into it.


  9. philip Berman

    May 28, 2010

    Hello Ian

    Sorry to trouble you, but I was wondering whether you would consider reviewing a new TEFL DVD I’ve made. Or maybe, even mention it on your blog?

    The project was born of my wife’s frustration about the lack of good quality video materials out there. She’s a tutor at Sussex University. I am freelance BBC producer/director. Here’s a link to an excerpt from our first video.

    We are really proud of it, but wanted to get some feedback.

    I’ve written an article about how it was made. Let me know if you want more information

    Many thanks

    Philip Berman | Director | TeachTEFL


  10. Michael Shelby

    March 7, 2012

    I am a former ESL teacher. Would you like to read some of my articles that may give you new creative ideas?
    I have created a number of articles on mastering various aspects of English and a special list of the most important English learning aids. My articles have already been published on a number of websites but my articles may be of interest to you personally as I consider them more practical and more helpful than other articles for quicker and more effective mastering of English by foreign learners. My suggestions may be useful to you and adaptable for your purposes. You may be inspired to develop my suggestions further, or you may get new creative ideas in your English language activities.

  11. Hi Ian,

    Thought I’d add a comment to say you’re only the second tree hugger I have ‘met’ … and both worked at IH :) Jamie Duncan (ex IH Buenos Aires) is a great English language teacher who wrote a really useful activities book for teens (and some adults) called Passionfruit about 13 years ago – you can see him hugging a tree on the inside cover. Anyway, great teacher and great person, so for me tree hugging is certainly a plus in TEFL !

    • Tree hugging is most definitely cathartic … highly recommended … especially for IH teachers! :-) Thanks for dropping by, Irene!

  12. I’ve been trying to find ESL teachers in Barcelona. I have a question for you. I’m a teacher of IELTS in Singapore. I want to go to Spain and especially to Barcelona. Hablo Espanol – lo estudie por 3 anos in la universidad.

    Anyway, my question is if it’s easy for an ESL teacher to make a living in Spain and Barcelona? Also, is the IELTS a popular exam and is there a demand for IELTS teachers there? This is what I specialize in.


  13. Hello there, I found your site via Google at the same time
    as looking for a similar subject, your site came up, it seems good.
    I have bookmarked it in my google bookmarks.
    Hello there, simply turned into alert to your
    blog thru Google, and located that it is really informative.
    I’m going to be careful for brussels. I will be grateful if you proceed this in future. A lot of people might be benefited from your writing. Cheers!


  14. Nicky Cullen

    September 19, 2013

    Hi James, I don’t see a contact section on your website. I have a partnership proposition for you. If you wish to hear more just drop me an email n.cullen@teachaway.com

  15. Hello Ian!
    I really like you are posting articles about so many different topics, what makes this website interesting not only for TEFL teachers?
    I have two questions: since you are promoting technologies into learning: have you ever tried Audience response system in learning? If so, what results have you accomplished?
    Second question is: would you be interested in making short interview for my blog? I would like to give example to follow for other teachers abroad :)

  16. Hi there Dear, are you actually visiting this web site on a regular basis, if so after that you will
    without doubt obtain good knowledge.

  17. hello!,I really like your writing so much! percentage we be in contact more about
    your post on AOL? I require a specialist in this space to unravel
    my problem. May be that is you! Having a look ahead to look you.

  18. It’s great that you are getting ideas from this paragraph as well as from our dialogue made at this

  19. I enjoy, lead to I discovered exactly what
    I used to be having a look for. You have ended my 4 day lengthy hunt!
    God Bless you man. Have a nice day. Bye

  20. Remarkable issues here. I am very glad to look your
    post. Thank you a lot and I am looking ahead to contact you.
    Will you kindly drop me a e-mail?

  21. I’m really enjoying the design and layout of your blog.
    It’s a very easy on the eyes which makes it much more pleasant for me to come here and
    visit more often. Did you hire out a developer to create your theme?
    Superb work!

  22. I loved as much as you will receive carried out right here.
    The sketch is attractive, your authored subject matter stylish.
    nonetheless, you command get bought an impatience over that you wish be delivering the following.

    unwell unquestionably come more formerly again as exactly
    the same nearly very often inside case you shield this hike.

  23. In any cases, the initial form of pevention that should be considered is
    the use of a penis health cr. Many males are not happy with the size of
    their personal organ. You merely can connect this solution while
    you are from the shower or bathtub.

  24. We are a gaggle of volunteers and starting a new scheme in our community. Your site provided us with valuable info to paintings on. You have done an impressive task and our entire community will likely be grateful to you.

1 Trackback For This Post
  1. Education: Some debates | Our Virtual English Classroom

    […] activity, here comes the writing task. Choose one of the issues introduced in the presentation by Ian James and write your a comment presenting your […]

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: