December 31, 2008

Listening dictations

While having a look at Bob Palmer´s blog ELTportal and exploring his links, I found out this site which is perfect for listening.

It´s called Listen and Write and has various authentic listenings in different levels. Students listen to it and try to rewrite the sentences spoken.

Another wonderful place for listening is THIS ONE where you listen to specific lines from movies and have to unscramble the words given at the bottom. It´s great fun!

Anglesonline is another great source for listening practise but this time with images. You watch scenes and answer comprehension questions. CLICK on the icon CINEMA and you´ll be able to see activities for different levels.

English Online France - offers various listening dictations I`d like to mention here.

English Online France - TV Commercials: Free ESL/EFL listening exercises via kwout

You can find
  • Beginner dictations
  • Telephone expression dictations
  • student´s introductions
  • TV commercials
  • Fairy tales dictations
  • and so on
And finally, (elllo , yes three Ls). At elllo you can find mixers (6 different speakers talk about the same topic), interviews, listening games, talking points ...
Enough listening for a life time. If you have an interactive board try one of the listening games in class, students love it.

December 29, 2008

SKY News

I´ve just discovered that Sky News provides embeddable news reports. I see great potential in using this in class blogs. Have a look at the video below. Imagine students could watch it and answer comprehension questions or even discuss the topic. In order to get the embed code,click on the play button, then on menu, embed, copy to clipboard and you´ve got the code to publish the video in your blog. So simple!

A blog to help teachers create their own blogs

I´d like to share a blog I created last year in order to train teachers at the school I work at. We had two workshops in which I introduced them to the basics of blogging. I created the blog in order to provide them with written instructions they could refer to later on and repeat the tasks we developed during the workshop.

I learned a lot about blogging reading tutorials, asking people questions and trying out stuff. I guess if you like reading and are really interested in trying out blogging, the BLOGGINGTEACHERS blog might be helpful. It gives detailed instructions on how to start a blog, how to add pictures, audio, chat boxes and other widgets.

December 22, 2008

The week / year in pictures

I was reading the blog Free technology for teachers when I came across this wonderful idea for using images. MSNBC has published some slideshows featuring the most important facts which happened during the week and I thought this activity could be really interesting for EFL learners as well.

Why not show some slideshows as an example and then ask sts to make their own slideshows using pictures or cartoons featuring "The week in my life" or "The year in my life" or even "The year in my country"? That would be interesting.

December 21, 2008

Christmas message

I´ve made two Christmas messages this year. One using Outshouts and the other using Animoto , inspired by Carla Arena´s Christmas message. I wish you all a wonderful Christmas and may God grant us wonderful moments in 2009.

This one is from outshouts. You choose a video you would like to send and record an introductory message using your webcam. It´s really fun.

December 19, 2008

Edmodo tutorial

I was meaning to make a tutorial in order to help colleagues to see how edmodo works and I tried utipu but unfortunately I couldn´t manage to see the video I had recorded. The feature from utipu which interested me is the possibility to easily send the video to youtube. ADVANTAGE: can send tutorial to youtube. DISADVANTAGE: have to download program to your computer and :( couldn´t see the video I recorded.

Then, I decided to try screencast-o-matic to make the tutorial.

December 12, 2008

Pownce X Edmodo

I´ve already written about Pownce and how I loved the possibility of easily sharing files with a group of people but after I got the message that Pownce would be closing I decided to give a try. Carla Arena was the first one who talked to me about it as she used it with a group of teachers during a course.

These are some of the features which I found in common with Pownce and some differences as well.
*Both in pownce and edmodo you can easily share files (pictures, songs, videos, links, documents) with a group of people or with an individual. An advantage edmodo has is the possibility to share any application which has an embed code, like the examples below.

sharing a slide show sharing a video sharing a voicethread

*Both offer you the possibility of creating groups to aggregate the people you want to share with. If you are the creator of the group (instructor) you get a code you give to the people you invite to join the group. The code feature makes edmodo much safer than Pownce, in the sense that you have the control with whom your students will be in contact with. As the manager of the group you also have the power to select the messages you find adequate for the group (clicking in public). Another positive point is the possiblility of filtering the incoming messages by groups or reading all the messages together. Something I miss in edmodo is the possibility of filtering the messages per person by just clicking on their picture as I could do in Pownce.

Great advantages for using edmodo with students:
- you can have a quick channel of communication with your students.
- language students will have plenty of writing and reading practise using the tool.
- you can send assignments to the group and grade them.
- you can send alerts.
- you can share a course calendar with the group.
- you can put your students in contact with other groups to develop joint projects.

Another thing I miss in edmodo is the impossibility to customize my layout, but nothing is perfect, right? I´ll definitely use edmodo with my groups next term.

This is a tutorial Carla Arena has made about edmodo


December 1, 2008

Edublog Awards 2008

I´ve just received an e-mail from Nik Peachey saying that he had nominated this blog for one of the categories of the Edublog Awards 2008. I couldn´t believe my eyes when I read the message and like I said in the message I sent him back, I feel deeply honored to have been nominated by someone I admire so much. In fact, Nik, YOUR work with your 3 blogs is an inspiration to me. THANK YOU!!!!!!

Below is a part of his post where he nominates various blogs:I agree with Nik in his nomination for the Best Resource sharing Blog: Larry Ferlazzo´s blog is a reference to many teachers in the world who are willing to plung into the edutech world.


I´ve just discovered this link via Nik Peachey´s twitter. With YouEmbedTube you can make a video carousel with tags you add or even with the videos from your youtube account like I´ve just done. I´ve also found out that Nik also has a youtube account I´ve just signed up to follow. I find it very interesting to explore what people select from youtube, this way discovering stuff I´m interested too. Check out my carousel. My youtube account.

If you have a class blog, the video carousel is a great way of sharing a selection of interesting videos with your students.
Any other ideas?