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March 3-2-1

March-3-2-1-(2)In March, I rediscovered the power of Twitter which has now become my go-to place when looking for anything ELT. It was thanks to Twitter that I’ve stumbled upon two great websites which I’ve started using with my younger students (ages 11 and 12). Still, some of my problems remain unsolved and here comes my never-ending struggle.

3 Twitter accounts worth following

I still can’t believe I’ve been oblivious to the impact of Twitter for so long. The amount of information shared each day is incredible and sometimes impossible to process. Still, I can’t imagine a better way to find out about…well, pretty much anything related to teaching. I’ve chosen 3 Twitter users (who are also blogging teachers!) who never fail to tweet something of interest.

#1 Ridvan Saglam

So much e-learning information!

#2 TatyGoRa ELT

Great practical advice and ideas to be used in the classroom!

#3 Inna Piankovska

My scoop.it guru, Inna always manages to pick the most interesting EdTech links.

2 Great websites to use with tweens and teens

#1 Diary of a Wimpy Kid by Jeff Kinney

It’s funny, easy to understand, and visually appealing. I’ve been using parts of the story to practice reading comprehension, inspire my kids to write and create their own comics, practice using Past Tenses, or encourage speaking. The biggest coup: my students find it genuinely amusing and relate to the content. I’ve been having trouble finding some reading material that wouldn’t be too childish or too adult and Wimpy Kid seems just right.

#2 ClubEFL Movies

The website features a lot of short videos (parts of films / trailers) accompanied by online activities (fill in the blanks / put the words in order). The videos get my students’ immediate attention, especially the possibility of choosing one, and they often serve as a starting point for the activity (I leave the ready-made exercises for last or homework). The biggest advantage: loads of short videos gathered in one place, all of them potentially appealing to kids. No more browsing through YouTube!

1 Never-ending struggle

For some time I’ve been teaching both online and regular classes, some of them with groups, but mostly with individual students. Each course is tailor-made, requires using specific materials and working on specific skills and language areas. As a result, I’ve found myself swamped by hundreds of paper copies and an equally overwhelming  number of Word/pdf files. Lesson planning has become quite messy and hectic, not to mention stressful and time-consuming. To sum up, I’m simply terrible at keeping organised. I’ve tried folders, colour-coding, Evernote, to-do lists, all to no avail. If there are any organised teachers out there, please, share your wisdom!

8 Comments

    • Hi Cara, I think you definitely have a point. Teaching specific courses/classes should at least in theory enable the teacher to organise their materials better. I sort of enjoy my pretty varied diet of different classes and levels, but yes, it might be a critical factor here. See you on Twitter and thanks for stopping by!

    • Yeah, maybe it’s time to deal with it and embrace the chaos 😀 When it comes to Twitter I guess it might be an acquired taste for some; it seems overwhelming at first (so many short msgs to digest at once). I started by following certain hashtags (#ELT, #ESL) and then the list grew from there on its own. Give it one more try, there are plenty of users tweeting great stuff about teaching YLs, so it might be a way to branch out and find some inspiration 😉

  1. Hi Gosia,
    I’ve always thought that twitter is not my thing but your post persuaded me to play around with it. Thanks 🙂
    Be an organised teacher – it’s my spring challenge. I’ve been trying out different strategies to finally get organised. Hope I’ll be able to share the ones that work for me on the AT blog.
    Have a great day!

    • Daria, I just checked out your website looking for the Twitter follow button 🙂 Start and account and let’s connect!
      Once you come to some conclusions re. getting organised let me know (I took the first step i.e. cleaned up my desktop, let’s see how long it lasts!).
      Take care and see you on the web soon!

    • Thanks, Sandy! As much as I enjoy using Twitter, it is still hard to navigate sometimes, so your advice will surely be of help 🙂

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