Flipped classroom

Flipped classroom

Flipped classroom is a very recent approach towards language teaching. It was first developed by Philip Kerr. The above link is a very useful blog post on flipped learning. It is not only useful but also simple and accredited source of information.

Basically, flipped classroom can be applied in many areas. It simple suggests that it self as a teaching tool where students watch or gain information from the Internet, leaving time for other activities in the classroom time.

The first issue that came to my mind is using it to develop grammar skills. Specially if the students watch other teachers on youtube explaining grammar points. This would save a lot of time in the class where teacher-student interaction can be exploited for other areas such as practicing or discussing any ambiguous points.

I hope it is beneficial for you as well!

Ideas for Using Emails in the Classroom…

Ideas for Using Emails in the Classroom…

When teachers think about using modern technology in their classroom, the first question that comes to their mind is ‘How and what activities’. In the above link, I found this paper very useful and it contains a trove of interesting ideas which can be applied in both EFL and ESL contexts.

 The main focus of the paper was the communicative approach and how using email in the classroom can boost this approach. It can also provide an authentic contest in which the learners can interact with another classes via creating group email exchange. The paper also contains various ways to use emails in the class. It is worthy reading !

 

Using Skype in EFL/ESL

Using Skype in EFL/ESL

I have found this article is particularly interesting in the sense that it provides information about using skype in and outside the classroom. The paper claims that skype is the safest way through which a teacher can initiate using technology in the classroom even if the teacher is not an expert in technology.

The two catching ideas in the paper are firstly the use of instant massages outside classroom especially if the students are shy or feel more comfortable typing better than speaking. The second is arranging on line conferencing (up to six users) to start conversations to improve speaking skills. The conference might also include natives from outside the class in order to familiarize the students with English accent.

Using skype in the classroon seems to have a lot of advantages. Please let me know if you have any other idea and feel free to have a look at the article.

     

The idea of translanguaging!

“Teaching English in EFL context using L2 only” How often did we hear that phrase in L2 learners when they were learning another language!. The use of L1 is still a large controversial issue in learning L2. This video suggests that using as little L1 as possible would have great benefits on L2 learners in terms of their motivation and especially in the case of low level learners.

I remember when I was learning English, I struggled at the beginning when the teacher is explaining everything in English and it was indeed demotivating.

The video proposes a very positive point that is the most important issue is to stay connected. A teacher does not want a L2 only class but an unsuccessful one!

Listening to that video, I also noticed the chat room that the teachers were on and how interesting and useful it would be for teachers in the same institution to hold such meetings on line to share their experience on a regular basis!

If you have any comments, please let me know!

Moblogging!

Moblogging!

I found this article very useful and inspiring. It sheds light on using mobile phones when introducing new vocabularies. The article proves that Asian students were able to recognise new words introduced via mobiles better than introducing them via printed copies. 

Using mobile phones in the classroom is not only interesting but also an advanced use of technology. For example, the teacher can set a task for the students where a new vocabulary is introduced and the students have to feedback using moblogging on their phone via SMS or any other social networking application. The learners should give definitions and examples using the new introduced vocabularies.

Apparently, the article was a trigger which stimulates various mobile phones’ activities to be used in a classroom setting. It is also beneficial in the case of learning English as a foreign language where the only exposure is the classroom. Therefore, these kind of activities promote working outside the classroom. 

Please feel free to leave comments.

NB: The full text can be viewed using the above link via MMU online resources accessed through Wiley online library.  

The advantages of documentaries in EFL.

The advantages of documentaries in EFL.

There are various available documentaries created by many trustworthy channels and which can be of particular benefits to language learners. What really makes documentaries valuable is that they are available in numerous subjects where teachers can always find what motivates their students and exploit it for their benefits. I have thought of two areas where teachers can use documentaries:

The first one is using them as a main task in a web-quest and creating mini-tasks which help improve four skills (reading -writing-speaking-listening). This can be done on a long-term basis covering a whole week or more in the timetable.

The second use might be a one-lesson documentary and follow-up comprehension questions afterwards. In the warmer phase ,of course, there should be schema raising activities. Also, after watching and answering the comprehension questions, teachers can personalize or prepare communicative discussions for the learners.

Finally, I have came across a really authentic and useful learning channel which contains various documentaries topics. http://www.youtube.com/user/LearningChanneI.

If you have any other ideas regarding documentaries in the classroom, please share!