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Learner Agency: The Key To A Growth Mindset In The ELT Classroom

Learner Agency The Key To A Growth Mindset In The ELT ClassroomWhat is a growth mindset?

There are many benefits to teaching learners with growth mindsets. Students with a growth mindset believe that they are in control of their own ability to learn and improve. They are not afraid of challenges, viewing them as opportunities that can help them grow. Students are more confident, as they believe that they can learn from mistakes. They are not easily defeated by failures, as failures help them identify where they should invest efforts for success. They are resilient and will persevere in difficult learning conditions. Continue reading


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Correct English Without Lowering Motivation In 6 Simple Steps

Blog - Correct English Without Lowering Motivation In 6 Simple StepsThere are many ways to assess learners, for example, mini-tests or observations, in order to evaluate and monitor their understanding and progress. As well as checking learners’ competencies in some specific language or skill, evaluation allows us to guide learners on how to improve. Part of this is noting any errors they make in completing the assessments, especially errors in the language they use. However, focusing on errors too much can be de-motivating for learners. They may struggle to improve because they are anxious about making mistakes, especially with productive tasks. So how can we correct English errors and at the same time keep learners motivated to improve? Continue reading


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An Introduction To Learner Agency

An Introduction To Learner Agency: a hand climbing a pile of books one finger at a timeIf I am asked what language teachers should do to prepare students for a world full of uncertainties beyond the classroom, I will say without hesitation that we should help them become agentive learners. In other words, language teachers should create opportunities for students to enact and grow their agency, as we explain in our comprehensive guide to Learner Agency. Continue reading


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How To Turn Reading Into A Habit

A selection of Oxford University Press graded readersHow useful is extensive reading?

My best student ever was called Anne. I taught her for about three years. She was a very enthusiastic student, though she rarely did what I set as homework. She did read books though. A lot of them. About two books a week in fact. Anna took her Cambridge Proficiency exams at the age of 14. She got an ‘A’. Anna is now an English Language teacher herself. Make no mistake – extensive reading works. Continue reading


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5 Fun Ways To Increase Student Engagement Online

Engagement Online: student enjoying an online lessonOver the last year, as many teachers have moved either partly or fully to remote teaching, one question has arisen many times: How do I keep my students engaged online? Whilst many teachers have their go-to folder of ready-to-use adaptable activities, comprised of the likes of board races, role-plays, flashcard games, and many more steadfast materials, the idea of digitising these activities has seemed somewhat impossible. Teachers feel like they have lost their time-savers.  

Whilst I can’t offer a solution on how to do a board-race activity through a Zoom lesson (that is impossible), what I can suggest are some alternative tools and platforms that teachers can add to their pre-existing arsenal of hit-the-ground-running classroom activities and exercises. So, in no particular order, here are my top 5 platforms for improving student engagement online. Continue reading