{April 15, 2009}   E-teaching

A nice idea that got on my mind while attending to the EVO Kick off Session (yeah, it was a long time ago… I really forgot to change this post status to “published”), was to create a chat room where my students can join one hour a week, to practice colloquial English. Since classroom work focuses mainly on formal English, this would be a nice way to engage those students who are not so interested in learning English “the old way”. Furthermore, if you know some native speakers, or another teachers, you can invite them to join your chat so as to make it a more interesting experience. Another option could be to make the chat “topic based”, so each different meeting, you could provide your students with opportunities to talk about varied topics.

Second Life (or any other VR) is another option that many teachers are taking into account. I guess it would be kind of a playing with dolls situation, where one of the characters represents a teacher and the other,  the student.

Blogging is a well known tool nowadays, but with some training on web tools, it can be a really powerful teaching tool. Many teachers publish a class blog for parents to see what their children are working on, or just to share some extra knowlede with their students.

There are lots of tools for language teaching and learning but where should we start? I tend to use IT with my private students, since they are all grown ups and acquainted with technology.  My advice is to start by using those tools you are familiar with, and then gradually start including new ideas into your teaching practices. Of course, you don’t need to be an IT expert to choose what to use for your teaching practices, but be sure you know all tips and tricks before you make your students work with technology (and, if they are under age, do not forget to ask for parents’ permission if you are planning to work on the net!). Sometimes school policies do not allow teacher-student contact after school hours, so be sure to ask first!


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