10 suggestions (teaching resources)

Hi everyone!!

Happy New Year! I thought I’d start the year with a post about some of my favourites websites and tools. So, let’s begin.
Music Department

Sheffield University ( Department of Music)

Fun (and quick warmer)

How about starting your lesson with Hangman. If your lesson topic is Plagiarism, play Hangman with your students. It is fun and they will pay attention to the theme of the lesson (at least the intro part).

Snipping tool

When Paint stopped existing, I felt lost. I had so many images I wanted to screen shot and then crop. Then I found the snipping tool in the windows program tab and all is well.
This website has lots of texts that can be used in class. It is like using texts from the Guardian or BBC. Just a different website. My students really liked this one!
This website has numerous past and upcoming webinars you can attend.
How important is speed when reading? If you want to work on that, check out this website for up-ping your students’ reading speed game.
More stuff
If you are teaching anything that has to do with reflective logs (listening, speaking, writing), you may want to check out this website. It has to do with Gibbs Reflective Cycle.  Another website I used in class when I was teaching reporting verbs was this website. I liked how there were lots of tabs. I think this can also be used as a self study task. It took about 20 minutes to go through with the students.
Videos I used in class
I used lots of videos in my academic writing classes. I found them quite helpful. Check them out!
I used this in my pre master class and it was quite easy for them to understand.
Fun video which explains how to develop a focused research question (which is actually what students have the most difficulty doing.
When is a source considered academic and when not? This video gives useful tips and it is quite easy to follow.
What have you been using? Let me know in the comments below. Don’t forget to connect with me!
Till next time….
Joanna
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Where ya been? What ya done?

where

So, the last time I spoke to you guys, I was going to do the Hana challenge aka blogging almost every day. I said,

I am going to write 15 posts.

Did I do that?

Nope!!

Why?

Well, life happened. I got a new job, I changed house, I had to get my stuff sorted, I started a new job.

I have a new life and blogging is quite hard for me at the moment. I have loads of new ideas to share, but I do not have the time to share them. I am knackered. Like… so tired. No energy to write. No energy to share.

That makes me wonder though. Should my job be the thing that takes up all my time?

Well at the moment yes. Work is very important. I have new modules to teach. I create materials, I am doing a lot of marking. I am trying to learn how to get around a new campus.

I am also trying to adjust to a 9-5 job and that ain’t easy.

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Life in the UK is different to life in Greece.

My work life is so different as well.

I am not a full time online Business English teacher any more. I am an EAP tutor.

I always wanted to work at a university. Now I am. You may catch me walking around the campus with a smile on my face and wonder if I have gone cray cray. I haven’t. I am just happy and I wish I could share that with you guys, my PLN, but I have no ELT blogging time.

Hmmmmmmmmmmmmm.

When I do have time, I talk about makeup because here, this blog, is kind of like an extension of my work. It is not work, but it is my professional blog. My fun beauty blog is my getaway (not doing much of that btw either).

Anyways, I thought I’d just write a little update and let you know how I’ve been.

How are you guys? What are you guys up to? How is teaching treatin ya?

Till next time…

Joanna

Fish bowl paraphrasing activity

Hi everyone,

Today’s post is going to be about an activity a colleague shared with us and I thought it sounded like a good idea. If you teach paraphrasing and academic writing, this post is for you.

Procedure

Put students in groups of four and then four more around those student. This is something like a circle in a circle.

The students in the inner circle are given a text which hey are asked to paraphrase. Once they are happy with their paraphrase (I suggest you give your students a word and time limit), the teacher takes away the text and asks the student to share their (paraphrased) text. The students in pairs must paraphrase the text again.

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Why do this?

It is a great way to help students avoid plagiarism.

It’s a great collaborative task.

It’s more fun than writing a paraphrase on your own.

Have you tried this activity? Have you tried a different version? Let me know what you think!

Till next time…..

Jo

xx

My Whiteboard & the thought process behind it

Hi guys,

Blog post numero duo (don’t worry my counting in Italian is gonna end today!) is here. Today I am going to talk about and show you my whiteboard. I have never really shared pics of my whiteboard, but I thought I’d share something cause well it’s interesting to share the ‘thought’ process behind what goes on my bard.

My context

I was teaching academic English and the lesson was a writing lesson.

My thought process

Of course I don’t think my whiteboard is perfect nor do I think that you will want to lift it and make it your own, but it makes sense to me and my learners. My white board is often photographed (I will touch upon the whole photograph thing a bit later on).

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Let’s take a closer look

You know when you reach the end of a series of sessions which have all been leading up to the writing of a long essay? This is what this board was for. A round up of the things my learners needed to focus on before handing in the first draft of their cause and effect essay. It was, in fact, based on questions and things I had noticed needed to be highlighted. I like using asterisks and smiley/sad faces. I draw boxes, circle things and so on. I do not use colours cause I am colourblind and that does not make sense to me (see what a non colour coordinated whiteboard looks like?).

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Setting Homework

Yeap! I make a list of everything my students have to do for homework. This works for me cause I don’t erase it, so it is there the next time I go into class and I get to check it. It works for my students as well cause they take a pic and check their homework (hopefully they do it as well!!).

Camera in the class: Do or don’t?

Well, personally, I don’t mind when my students take a pic of my whiteboard. I do always warn them though. I say,

Just because I am OK with you taking a pic of my whiteboard/ slides, doesn’t mean all the tutors are, so you need to ask for their permission.

I also tell them when they need to write something down. You see, when something is super important, I tell them to take notes and not just a pic. I think they retain it better in their memory. Someone actually told me that. Dunno if it is an urban legend though or true!!

So, there you have it. My whiteboard. I’d love to see yours. As for the #hanachallenge, I am on number 2 (have committed to 15…. let’s see).

Don’t forget to follow my blog (if you aren’t already). ‘Like’ my Facebook page (see sidebar on ways to connect).

Thanks for stopping by!!

Till next time….

Blog post number 1: My big news!!!!

Hi guys!!!

A while ago Hana Ticha wrote a blog post about how lots of bloggers were not really blogging that much and we (silent bloggers) kinda took it as a challenge and decided we’d try to blog as much as possible in September.

I set a target of 15 blog posts. Let’s see if I manage to do it.

We named it #thehanachallenge and you (yes, fellow edu blogger) can take part if you wish and try to set a target of as many as possible.

Beach in Chania

Let me explain my silence

I have actually gone from a rambler to not writing much at all.

I have been busy. I mean really busy. I have too many hobbies and a demanding full time job, so I kinda stopped blogging.

The other thing is that I feel all “blogged out”. I mean, I have kinda shared most of the things I wanted to share. I have written loads of blog posts!!

Blogging was also a way I shared my ideas cause my teaching situation made me feel a bit isolated, but now I go into the staff room and exchange opinions and then it’s out of my system folks!! I never had a proper staff room before. A space to share ideas, talk about our work problems. The past few months I did.

This brings me to my big news. Yup. So, if you have been reading my blog for a while you probably know that

I am in Greece

I teach EAP in the UK during the summer

I teach Business English online

Well, this year was a bit different. My EAP journey started in March and….

I just got a full time job at a UK university!!!

It’s my first full time EAP tutor post. I am so excited and so scared!!! It will be a new chapter in my career as a teacher and quite challenging cause I have never lived in the UK during the winter, I have never been far away from my family for so long and yeah, it’s a new beginning.

So, there’s my life update and blog post numero uno!!!

Till next time….

Jo

The girlie side of ELT: 2 Summer Reads

Book Reviews
Hi everyone,
Today’s post is about books!I ❤ reading light-hearted books, especially during summer. I will actually talk to you about two of the books I have read so far and recommend them. If you like novels that are funny and about love, I have something for you love!
Both

13 Weddings by Paige Toon

I read this in 3 days. It is about a girl called Bronte who woks for a magazine. She meets someone, falls in love, and so on so on. You see her adventures and giggle from time to time. I like that about books. If a book makes me laugh, I am content. I really liked the ending because it was not predictable. There is a second story line which I did not really get (father- daughter relationship), it did make me want to read more though in order to figure out what was going on.
I recommend this book if you are looking for something easy to read, on the beach during the summer.
You can get the book here.
paige

The Queen of Wishful Thinking by Milly Johnson

I haven’t finished reading this but I thought I’d mention it cause first of all, I really like where the story is set. England and in an antique shop. This one is about two people who love antiques and meet. They are both married and not very happy in their  marriages. It is interesting to see the couple dynamics. Not as light- hearted as the other book, but nothing heavy (so far). Again, a book you can flip through during your holidays. You can get it here.
milly

Other recommendations

If you haven’t read the Rosie Project or the Rosie Effect, you need to. Again stories about finding love but written from a guys perspective. I have one spoiler for you. He makes a questionnaire in order to find his perfect wife. These books are really fun to read and page turners. You can get the Rosie Project here and the Rosie Effect here
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If you enjoyed what you read, do subscribe to my blog. We can also connect on social media. Click on the ones you use and connect with me 🙂  Pinterest / TwitterInstagram/Google+. /YouTube  Maybe give my Facebook page a ‘like’ and you will neva, eva miss out on my super posts.

See you in my next post!!!

xxx

Jo

Don’t Judge a book by its cover (get to know me activity)

Pin

Hi everyone!

I had a warmer idea for the ‘get to know me’ part of a lesson and I thought I’d share. It’s based on a social experiment I watched regarding blind dates. So, the warmer is called ‘judging a book by its cover’ (I made that up. Don’t know if this activity exists somewhere in the ELTsphere) and here is how it goes. Of course you can use this activity when teaching a 1-21- lesson, an online lesson or any type of lesson. You do not need any props except pen and paper.

Procedure

Introduce the task by showing a PPT or writing on the board the phrase:

Don’t Judge a Book by its Cover

Ask students what they think it means. Do this as a class activity. NO pair work. Students should not be talking to each other at this stage!

Once you have discussed what this means. Write the following questions on the board (My PPT: Get to know me).

start

Give students 3-4 minutes to answer these questions about you. Ask them to shout out their answers regarding you. Then show them/ write your own answers. This should take about 8-10 minutes depending on how much you want to share etc. Tell students to find someone they have not spoken to before. This will be their partner for this activity. Hand out the question papers. I have linked mine here (Your name is), but you can also make your own. Avoid controversial questions. I think it’s a good idea to stick to basics.

Question Ideas

  1. Your name is………………………………………….. 
  2. You are………………………………………… years old.
  3. You are from…………………………………………….. 
  4. Your favourite colour is………………
  5. In your free time you like to…………………………………………………………………………………… 
  6. You do not like…………………………………………. 
  7. Your favourite movie is………………………
  8. Your favourite singer is……………………
  9. Your favourite actor/ actress is………………….

This activity can last as long as you want it to depending on how many questions you have. My students are adult learners who are going to do a Masters degree (hence the uni question).

So, that’s the Get to Know me/warmer activity. Hope you like it. Let me know if you try it and how it went. Connect with me on Twitter/ Facebook/ Instagram 

Thanks for stopping by…..

Joanna