All of us, no matter how experienced we are, are constantly looking for new ways to vary and improve the lessons. Skyteach authors are often asked such questions as “How can I make my online lesson more interactive?”, “How can I organise vocabulary activities in online lessons?”, “ What is the best tool to record lessons?”, “How to add some gamification?”, “Which online tools can you recommend to practice listening skills?” and so on.
We have collected answers to some of your questions and would like to share some useful online tools.
We’re going to start with some technical moments that will make your life easier.
1) Lesson recording
Mp3skyperecorder.com is useful if you want to record a Skype lesson itself. You can try it if you want to show students their progress comparing the first lesson with the 50th one. I’ve already tried it, and my students were surprised. They could check the progress themselves.
2) Pictures sharing
Prnt.sc is really cool to make screenshots. You can take one just in a second and send the link to it immediately.
3) Platform for lessons
If you’re tired of Skype, Zoom is a fabilous alternative. There is an opportunity to organize an online conference up to 40 mins for free. You can break the participants out, show your screen, share sound, draw using a whiteboard and record your lesson.
1) Interactive activities
Wheeldecide is a perfect tool to make your lessons more interactive. Choose a wheel and click on it! It’s a perfect solution for organizing speaking activities. Let’s take this one which would be perfect while talking about food.
Ask your student to click on the wheel and give a talk about the cuisine or dish that was chosen automatically.
Agendaweb has the richest collection of exercises (grammar, vocabulary, reading etc.). This tool was especially designed for online teaching and can be used both during the lesson and as a hometask.
2) Pronunciation and vocabulary work
Youglish looks and sounds similar to YouTube, and that’s not a surprise – this website was designed for improving pronunciation with the help of YouTube videos. British, American and Australian English are available. Sounds cool, doesn’t it? Moreover, I use this website to show students how the word is used in the sentence.
Wordart is perfect for those who can’t remember all the new words (students are not supermen, remember?) and are fed up with creating sentences in order to memorize them all. Add some creativity to your students’ learning process. Ask them to create a poster based on what you’ve learnt. Another option to do it is to create a mind map using mindmeister.com.
Rewordify will help you simplify texts. Some authentic materials can be too hard for students to comprehend, and this tool will definitely be useful as it simplifies texts.
Moreover, the system suggests you some tips.
3) Listening practice
Listenaminute has a collection of short recordings on a variety of topics. The only disadvantage I see here is the fact that all the tracks were recorded by the same man (actually, I suppose student should listen to different accents). So, don’t get used to it.
4) Speaking practice
Plot-generator seems to be the best friend for those who are not imaginative enough to create their own stories. It can be useful for introverted students who especially need some kind of inspiration. There are lots of other generators, so don’t be lazy to click and check them out.
The amount of resources is actually endless. Hope you liked our ideas and will definitely use them in your practice.
Учите с удовольствием!