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Saturday, 23 February 2013

Using Technology in Classes

On Monday, March 4th, students in South Korea will begin their new school year.

The English academy that I work at follows the public school cycle, so we will also begin new classes.

Right now we are ending the current academic year, which means student reports and book parties and goodbyes, but also planning for new classes.

In thinking about new classes, I have found the internet to be increasingly useful, as it:

     *provides variety and helps to stimulate students' interest
     *can reinforce content areas
     *allows for listening opportunities that aren't otherwise available
     *promotes educational games (vs. "the other" . . . a future post)

Over the past year, and especially in the last 4-5 months, I have spent a lot of time searching for, reviewing, and "testing" English game websites with my students.  I do this for the above reasons, but also because I would like my students to play some of the games at home.

I have posted, at different times, some of the websites that I have experimented with, but I want to summarize what websites I plan to use in this new semester:

#1: If I had to pick one website to use in my classrooms (we have 3 that are equipped with a computer and a large monitor) I would choose the Listen A Minute website: http://listenaminute.com/

It is well organized and has saved me so much time with respect to classroom preparation.  Mostly, however, I have noticed an improvement in my students' English skills over a period of time.

If you click on the "Word" button you can manipulate the texts before printing them off; also, you can also click on the "listen" button to play the relevant paragraph for your students.

#2: I really like the BBC Skillwise website: http://www.bbc.co.uk/skillswise/english/games

Go there and check it out.

#3: Another British site: http://learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.org/en/play-words

It has some good games, especially at the bottom of the recommended page

#4: For variety, to review vocab, etc, I like Esl Games World:

http://www.eslgamesworld.com/members/games/ClassroomGames/index.html

I will continue to add to the list . . .

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