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What I’m reading

useful links for teachers

These are links to sites & articles related to English teaching that I recommend. Hope you find them useful and enjoyable.

“Research shows how gaming can support language learning”

Pearson English

Since its headline says “gaming” as opposed to “playing games“, I expected this article to be about online gaming and language skills. In fact, though online game playing is mentioned in the last couple of paragraphs, it is mostly focused on the multiple benefits of “traditional” classroom language games i.e. those we play in teams and groups, involving role-play, whiteboard & pen or sets of cards. If you are unconvinced about the value of games in your classroom, read this with an open mind. Game playing can be highly effective, particularly with teenage learners, (i) or repetitive yet fun practice of recently-learned vocab & grammar, and (ii) at building fluency in a language classroom. Here’s a summary of the research that proves how.

Traditional teaching tires teachers out

EL Gazette

This short article about teaching styles is from the EL Gazette. I’ve read the Gazette for about twenty years. When I worked for the British Council, there was always a copy in the staffroom and for a while I had a personal subscription too. They’ve been offering free subscriptions during the Covid-19 pandemic, which is a totally marvellous way of supporting out-of-work teachers.

Thinking differently

Cambridge English

Published by the international section of Cambridge English, it mentions critical thinking which is something I particularly emphasise when teaching Academic English. I value the resources (e.g. books and exam courses) from Cambridge English because I’ve always found them to be carefully researched and totally reliable. Have a look at the other posts on their site, too.

Also, I do feel Cambridge’s exams are better quality than Pearson-Edexcel’s. Why? long story… Short answer, that’s my professional judgement as a teacher of 30 years’ standing.