Do you have students who find it more and more difficult to be on task or become easily impatient with themselves or their peers? Or ones who miss some lessons for seemingly no reason or even if they do turn up, they look exhausted all the time? These could all be the symptoms of digital burnout. I have written an article about this phenomenon late last year concerning ourselves, teachers. As the symptoms described there for teachers are the same for our students it may be a good idea to read that article first. Continue reading
Not only have classrooms around the world moved online, teacher training has too. So, when you’re not in the classroom, you’re now in a different online platform for your professional development as well. The amount of time we spend in virtual rooms and at our screen is higher than ever. We’re always online! But have all of those online teacher training events been useful? Chances are you’ve spent as much time trying to find quality professional development as you’ve spent in the training itself! Have you attended webinars where the tech doesn’t work? Where the topic isn’t quite what you thought? Have you rushed from one virtual room, clicked the next link and sat there, bored or uninspired? Or perhaps the webinar was great, but you missed a lot of great points because you were so busy trying to take notes.
At OUP we’ve been running online teacher training since 2011, so we know what makes a great webinar! Today I’m sharing my 5 top tips for optimising your online teacher training with us, so you can focus on getting the most out of your valuable time (and leave the rest to us). Continue reading
When we create assessments, why is it important to make sure vocabulary is at a particular level?
When we create tests, we have to know that learners have sufficient vocabulary to engage with the reading and listening materials. If the level is too high, the texts will not be accessible and the test will be too difficult. Alternatively, if the vocabulary is too basic, the test may be too easy. Consequently, when we develop reading and listening materials for Oxford University Press, we have to make sure that the materials are challenging for test-takers, but not too difficult. To do this, we’ve created special word lists. Continue reading
After sinking or swimming in the virtual world of remote education, many teachers will probably look back at 2020 as when they learnt how to use most of the digital tools in the shortest of time. Some may look back and remember it as a time when they first recognised the English language ability of certain students that had previously gone unnoticed. Others might have concluded that completing the curriculum should not be their one and only goal and that their students also needed them for maintaining a level of wellbeing. Continue reading
As a Spanish learner, I once faced the awkward situation of thinking I was having a conversation about new potatoes being on the menu, when in fact the hotel manager had diverged from the conversation to give me the news that there was a new Pope! Being in a Catholic Latin American country at the time, I should have been more aware of the context and cultural importance of the vote going on in the Vatican that week. However, my focus was simply on the words. Hence intercultural competence is so important and should not be ignored in the language classroom. It is especially so with English because it facilitates communication between so many people from diverse backgrounds (ELT Position Paper on Global Skills, 2019). Continue reading