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ESL forum > Concerning worksheets > Garbled Mess!    

Garbled Mess!


Garbled Mess!
I feel like I īm being penalized when I download a worksheet only to find a garbled mess.

I use open system software (Open Office and Neo Office).  I understand the site īs policy that all uploads must be in doc. format.  I can open, read, send, etc. in all formats.  

I don īt like that I download some, not all, files and then I īm expected to re-format the file so that it īs readable.  

The files in question are often those loaded with graphics.

I don īt think I īm the only one with such problems, and if anyone has experienced the same thing and has a work around, I īd greatly appreciate it.

Thanks for your time.

16 Jun 2010      



I agree with you. I am one of those who suffer from the same problem. An important number of users prepare materials full of graphics, pictures and large fonts so I have to clean them up to make the worksheet suitable for printing. The other thing is that most  materials are here prepared in colour. I really wonder who, or which institution will want to fund this much expensive kind of colour printing.

Another problem is that .doc format may cause some page layout problems when you open the document in another office program other than MS Office. The graphics or pictures may change places or move around out of your control if you are not really patient enough to fix them again. To overcome this problem, the users should be allowed to upload PDF files. PDF will be more convenient in terms of fixed page layout. This will also reduce the file size; hence, the downloading time and file management will be easier.


16 Jun 2010     


I for one would NOT like to see worksheets in PDF.
Unfortuately too many worksheets have grammar mistakes (sometimes quite serious ones)  and with a PDF format I would not be able to correct these before I gave them to the students.
Before anyone gets angry..I am not criticising because we ALL make errors, including me...and I am a native speaker...it īs quite human!...call them typo īs or just a slip of the tongue, whatever.
While on this subject, I want to thank all the contributors to this site. So often I have been so grateful when you have explained so well a point that I use everyday but have never really analysed.
Some times a non-native speaker is a better teacher, don īt you think?...
because they have worked out the patterns, the rules ..which we native speakers do not always know!
Cheers Joy

16 Jun 2010     


Hear hear Joy - I īm with you

16 Jun 2010     

Lina Ladybird

PDFs are not editable, so this is a proposal that I don īt support. ;)) Joy is right: unfortunately, many wss contain serious grammar and spelling mistakes which I have to correct before handing out a ws to my students!
Sometimes a non-native speaker is a better teacher, don īt you think?
I totally agree with you - sometimes!! I used to have a native speaker from England as an English teacher for almost one year. I really appreciated the fact that he would always tell me 100% sure what I can and cannot say in English, what expressions are appropriate or inappropriate in certain cases and which word order is correct and which isnīt.
However, when it comes to explaining special grammar topics, I second your statement, dear Joy! A friend of mine keeps complaining about her English teacher from England who keeps saying things like "but this is totally clear - I don īt understand why you need more explanations" when my friend asks her about the correct use of much, many and a lot of, for example.
OF COURSE, these things are clear to native speakers and that īs exactly the reason why some of them are not able to explain things as "understandable" as a non-native teacher sometimes... ;)

16 Jun 2010     


I agree with joy2bill, jayho and topolina - I have problems with any worksheet that you can īt edit. Not only because everyone makes mistakes, but also because sometimes you want to change a few small things to make it appropriate to your clases!

16 Jun 2010     


I totally agree with Joy and Silke! PDFs are great in certain cases; however, I find it useful when I īm able to edit a WS. Sometimes I want to use it with adults and I can delete all the cliparts that are inappropriate or I can correct the mistakes if there are any. 

As for native speakers - I believe that when the main aim is conversation and fluency, they are worth their weight in gold, but when teaching grammar is concerned I īve had quite some not so pleasant/good experience. I don īt want to generalize as there are teachers who are amazing and native speakers.

Have a great day! 

16 Jun 2010     


Thank you for your replies so far.

However, if possible could participants keep on topic with their comments?

I agree with fikretnns regarding the colour overload on many worksheets, but there are many contributors who often include a black and white version, and this is greatly appreciated.  With regard to color, I run a small school and I would never make any money if most of my printables were loaded with colour (apologies to my students).

Again, this is an aside.  My concern was over the loss of a point (today one point, but many more over the course of a year) from a printable I downloaded today.  I hope that somehow this will stop happening (ie. garbled downloads) or that somehow points can be reimbursed if we download un-usable printables.

I appreciate all the printables I receive from the site, knowing all the hard work put in by the creators.  I just hope to be able to use all those that I download.

16 Jun 2010     


Hi narutojp
Your post has raised some interesting discussion - thank you for allowing the diversion.
Iīm sure we all appreciate that youīd like to keep it on topic however regular visitors to the forum will recall that this issue is raised regularly and perhaps query why you havenīt searched the forum to gauge past opinions/work arounds if you are so intent on others thoughts. Oh, perhaps you did but you couldnīt find anything because not all contributors use meaningful titles for their threads.  Never mind - these are all ongoing issues that we all cope with despite continual requests in the forum and the rules stating īplease write a descriptive titleī.  If we want to get the most out of this site we have to work with it harmoniously.
I hear that youīve lost a valuable point but as a premium user you already know you can download 30 new WSs every day.  Youīve been around for over two years so Iīm sure you know the ropes.  Just one more WS in your collection can provide you with a whole heap of points to play around with. So, perhaps it will be less frustrating for you if you simply upload a new contribution so that in a few days time you will have more points. 

16 Jun 2010     


Speaking a language does not a teacher make.  I am a native speaker, and, Thank G-d, I have had a lot of success with my teaching.  Not because I am a native speaker, but in spite of being a native speaker.
I, for one, always use colour worksheets for my students.  I feel that it gives so much to a worksheet.  My younger students really appreciate it, and my adult students also like it.
Sometimes the worksheets do need correction, so I, too, do not vote yes on the proposal of PDF files.
Hugfrom Israel

16 Jun 2010     

Aninha Feliz

I kind of agree. I like editable worksheets better because some of my students can īt read the instructions in English.
Kids like colour worksheets better.  And hey, most books have colours! But sadly, I don īt have a colour printer.

16 Jun 2010     

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