About Me


Hi, my name is Jeff.

Currently based in Hong Kong, I am a TEFL- and TESOL-certified English language teacher from Toronto, CanadaI have written and prepared a large number of ELT resources and have developed courses in HKDSE exam preparation, academic English, grammar, British pronunciation and phonics. I am deeply passionate about lexicography and am a regular contributor to the Macmillan Open Dictionary.

My first teaching job was at a tutorial centre in Hong Kong, where I had little autonomy over what and how to teach my students. It was there that I experienced first-hand the ineffectiveness of constant grammar and exam practice as a pedagogic strategy. Consequently, I became determined to deliver lessons based on sound teaching principles, and I left the centre to start Mastering Grammar in 2011. Three years later, Mastering Grammar won the award for Best Facebook Page about the English Language in the Macmillan Dictionary Love English Awards. This would have been impossible without the support of my followers because there were many impressive nominees, which included BBC Learning English, British Council, Oxford University Press and Grammarly. You can find out about all the other nominees here. My audience on Facebook has grown steadily, and I am delighted to have over 200,000 followers from all over the world.

Since starting Mastering Grammar, I have coached a wide variety of people from different walks of life and helped them to achieve their English learning goals. These have included primary school to university-level students, schoolteachers, university lecturers, lawyers, accountants and business executives. Much of my satisfaction comes from being able to help my students become self-assured participants in this global world where English is the lingua franca.

I am strongly committed to lifelong learning through continuing education. To improve the quality of the lessons that I offer and to keep up to date with the latest developments in the language education field, I usually complete considerably more than 100 hours of continuing professional development (CPD) each year.

Aside from teaching, I enjoy playing the piano, working out at the gym, drinking coffee and readingI am never without a book. I am also a fan of all things military, having spent four years serving in the Canadian Forces as an army medic.

I look forward to working with you.

Media Appearances

I was quoted in this article about the real meaning of the slang acronym YOLO.

One of my Facebook posts went viral and provided the basis for this article relating to the Chinese word for seeds being mistranslated into English as nuclear by a supermarket.

Awards

In 2014 my Facebook page won the award for Best Facebook Page about the English Language in the Macmillan Dictionary Love English Awards.

Publications

I was a regular contributor to the English section of Ming Pao Daily News (Canadian Edition) in my student years. You can view some of my published articles by clicking here.

Qualifications

Bachelor of Medical Science, The University of Melbourne

Teaching English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) Certificate (with a specialisation in Teaching English to Young Learners and Teaching Test Preparation Courses), University of Toronto

Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) Certificate, Arizona State University

Continuing Professional Development (CPD)

Training and CPD help to keep my teaching skills sharp, relevant and up to date. You can view a selected list of the certification and CPD courses that I have taken as well as the conferences I have attended by clicking here.

Professional Memberships

Member, TESOL International Association

Member, International Phonetic Association

Member, Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading (CIEP)