This blog is aimed at professionals and learners who seek excellence and are tireless in learning more and more... Here you will find classroom management tips, teacher development issues, a myriad of class activities to enhance your lesson plan and useful vocabulary tips. Many thanks for your visit!!

terça-feira, 1 de dezembro de 2015

Where is the WEB driving education?

The question of this post has been o my mind for some years. Fortunately now, some answers have emerged because I have been taking a course on Web Science at the University of Southampton which aims at shedding some light to attendants where the web came from, where it is now and where it may go.

Needless to say that the World Wide Web has changed the ways we communicate, collaborate, and educate. We increasingly live in a Web-dependent society in a Web-dependent world. The Web is also the largest human information construct and it is growing faster than any other system we know about.
As educators, we need to understand the current, evolving, and potential Web so that we can get the most of it in our classes. If we just standstill, things change at the speed of light and our teaching practice may become out of date. It is our role have an awareness of current and emerging research questions for Web Science.
In brief words Web Science is the study of the social behaviours in the Web at the inter-person, inter-organizational and societal level, the technologies that enable and support this behaviour, and the interactions between these technologies and behaviours.
Take some some time and have a look at this dense but cutting edge topic. Feel free to share any comments with me or make any questions if you will.
To start I invite to watch the TED talk :

Tim Berners-Lee: The next web | TED Talk | TED.com


segunda-feira, 6 de julho de 2015

Useful Apps for Education

A mobile app is a computer program designed to run on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers.
Apps are usually available through application distribution platform, which began appearing in 2008 and are typically operated by the owner of the mobile operating system, such as the Apple App Store, Google Play, Windows Phone Store, and BlackBerry App World. The term "app" is a shortening of the term "application software". It has become very popular, and in 2010 was listed as "Word of the Year" by the American Dialect Society
I have been using a number of apps in my classes but I will list below some that are really resourceful for classroom management and general study.

1) Coin Flip full free : Wanna flip a coin for a hard decision? This app let you select your favorite coins and sport backgrounds to try your luck. Beautiful coins from 28 nations and different beautiful backgrounds to choose. Students love it!
2) Random Student Picker: This app is designed for teacher who want to quickly and easily pick students at random to answer questions, complete tasks or join groups. Classes can be added by entering names or copying and pasting. 
3) I love English (English videos): English Conversation Listen" is a helpful app to practice english conversation for everyone. With more than 1 english channels categorized in 6 levels, you can strengthen your english speaking and listening skills perfectly.
4) Too Noisy Lite online:  As the noise level in a classroom increases beyond an acceptable level the noise level meter dynamically indicates the level of noise, and the background graphics within the app change to reflect the noise levels.

What about you? What apps have you been using in class? Share with us!

terça-feira, 21 de abril de 2015

Do you know how to say "firme e forte" in English?
Alive and kicking

E.g: How are you feeling after a long day studying for the test?
 Alive and kicking.

Reference: Englishexperts.com

terça-feira, 3 de março de 2015

Giving Positive Feedback- Teaching Positively

A teacher's attitude, behavior, language and teaching style can do a lot to make or break a good student. Best teachers encourage learning, effort, motivation and curiosity   .There is a famous sentence that says " we teach what we are" so we have to nurture a positive atitude towards our students results since the very first classes.  Praising is the best way to get this.The best teachers know that one of the essential elements in encouraging a student to do better is praise. Students, just like all other human beings regardless of age, like to be praised. Publicly praising a student also has the added benefit of encouraging other students to strive. However, if you think that it might have the opposite effect of alienating some students, you can try private praise by calling a student after class and praising him/her for a job well done.  Thinking of that, I share with you below some sentences that you should incorporate to your classroom language so that you can make sure you are praising your students and avoind so many repetitive Very Good! For every achievement, effort, good attitude, your students deserve one praise.Try these ones!

Some Ways To Say "Very Good!"

  1. I’m happy to see you working like that.
  2. You’ve just about mastered that.
  3. I’m proud of the way you worked today.
  4. That’s the best you’ve ever done.
  5. You’re doing that much better.
  6. Couldn’t have done it better myself.
  7. Now that’s what I call a fine job
  8. You must have been practicing.
  9. You’re doing beautifully.
  10. Superb!
  11. Keep it up!
  12. You’ve got it down pat.
  13. You certainly did well today.
  14. Tremendous!
  15. You’re doing fine.
  16. Good thinking!
  17. You are really learning a lot.
  18. Keep on trying.
  19. You outdid yourself today.
  20. I’ve never seen anyone do it better!
  21. Good going!
  22. I’m very proud of you.
  23. Good job, (individual’s name).
  24. You figured that out fast.
  25. That’s really nice.
  26. It’s a pleasure to teach you when you work like that.
  27. Clever!
  28. That’s great!
  29. Way to go!
  30. Now you have the hang of it.
  31. Congratulations!
  32. You’ve got your brain in gear today!
  33. Wonderful!
  34. Super!
  35. You’re on the right track now.
  36. You are very good at that.
  37. That’s coming along very nicely!
  38. You’re doing a good job.
  39. That’s quite an improvement.
  40. You are learning fast
  41. You make it look easy!
  42. You really make my job fun!
  43. You’re getting better every day.
  44. That’s the way!
  45. Nice going
  46. Sensational!
  47. You haven’t missed a thing!
  48. That’s the way to do it!
  49. Keep up the good work
  50. Nothing can stop you now.
  51. That’s better than ever.
  52. Outstanding!
  53. You did very well!
  54. You’re really improving.
  55. Right on!
  56. You’re on target now.
  57. I’m impressed with your progress!
  58.  Incredible job!
  59.  Awesome job!
- See more at: http://www.incredibleart.org/files/praise.htm#sthash.MAc0O25o.dpuf

domingo, 1 de março de 2015

The most important thing in the world activity

This activity is great to be used with teens and adults. It's a very good tool for the teacher to evaluate how students perceive their sef-steem. I like to use it as a warm-up but it can be a good wrap-up too.
1) Teacher asks student to say what the most important things in the worldare for them and give one adjective to describe it.
2) Before the class the teacher will have stuck at the bottom of an empty box a mirror. then, in clas, after this brief discussion, every student in turns will be invited to open the box and see his/her reflection. They should also say one adjective to describe them. Before I invite them to start opening the box, I usually say that inside the box there is something very important for me in the world. 
3) If you want, as a follow-up, you can have them sitting in pairs to discuss how they felt when they saw their reflection and so on but usually the activity is always very rewarding for both students and teacher.

quinta-feira, 19 de fevereiro de 2015

Your Semester Hashtag Activity

####magicteaching#coolactivities#motivated students#positiveresults#lerningtounlearn######
 Many of our students love this symble nowadays, so....why not thinking of a cool ativity to incorporate it to our class. Reflecting upon it, I thought of an activity but before the procedures let's look into some facts about the origin of hash tags. I confess I was taken aback!! I got it from urbandictionary.com:

"Hashtags are believed to have originated on Twitter but, interestingly enough, it is not a Twitter function. Some believe it began when the broken plane luckily landed in the Hudson River in early 2009, some Twitter user wrote a post and added #flight1549 to it. I have no idea who this person was, but somebody else would have read it and when he posted something about the incident, added #flight1549 to HIS tweet. For something like this, where tweets would have been flying fast and furiously, it wouldn't have taken long for this hash tag to go viral and suddenly thousands of people posting about it would have added it to their tweets as well. Then, if you wanted info on the situation, you could do a search on "#flight1549" and see everything that people had written about it."

Suggested activity and procedures:
1) First of all, to introduce the topic, I would have my students discussing about their beliefs regarding the origin of hash tags to see of any of them know about the facts.
2) After I would ask them to carry on a research on the internet to know about the facts.
3) Later on, I would ask them to take a picture (they're free to use their creativity), which would represent their expectations for the semester. Then they would create the hashtag for the picture.
4) As students finish creating their hashtags, I would ask them to vote for the most creative one. As an alternative prodecedure, if students have a group on facebook, the teacher can ask them to upload their pictures and there can be a votation online. This way they can show their pictures and hashtags to families and friends! ;)

For more interesting info on the topic you can also check these two links:

terça-feira, 3 de fevereiro de 2015

The Word of the Year Quiz

Every year the Oxford Dictionaries announce the word of the year. So, the new SELFIE is VAPE which was the word chosen for its significant use in 2014.

To explore this set of words that are year after year incorporated to the English language, I found this quiz (link below). There teachers can have students enriching their vocabulary and also practicing  these new items by asking students to role play situations where they have to use a given number of words. Very good activity for advanced and upper-intermediate students!


Let's now wait for the word of 2015!!!!

sexta-feira, 23 de janeiro de 2015

New Year! New Ideas! Part III

This is the third activity I will share that can be useful for a first class. I call it EGG INTERVIEW. Check out the simple procedures below:
This activity is aimed at elementary up students and groups around 8-14 students.
Give each student 3 strips of paper where they should write down information about themselves (eg. married, university/school, sport). Then students scrunch the strips of paper into eggs and place all their eggs in a basket the teacher is going to provide them with. Later, students unravel an egg at a time and search out the author. Elementary and Pre intermediate students will make sentence like: Julia likes PIZZA. Intermediate and advanced sudents may make questions: Do you like PIZZA Julia?
The student to get more correct guesses (authors) is the winner!

quarta-feira, 21 de janeiro de 2015

New Year! New Ideas! part II

If you are going to work with beginners, one of the topis you are most probable to be covering in the very first classes is the ALPHABET. So here I suggest a simple activity to introduce or activate the topic. If you are working with other levels (pre-intermetiate or even intermediate) this activity can be great for a warm-up or wrap-up. Hope you and your students have loads of fun!


Have participants/students divided into small groups. Tell them you are going to give them 5 minutes to find one item within or outside the room (they may take pics of the objects if they are hard to carry!) that begins with each letter of the alphabet, in order. At the end of the time alloted, ask each team how far they got. The tem that got furthest, wins!!

quinta-feira, 8 de janeiro de 2015

New Year - New Ideas Part I

On the following days I will be writing about a set of activities I've been designing to start classes with a positive mood. The first activity I will talk about is about the hit Rude by the band Magic. Teachers can play both the videoclip as well as the lyrics because there is no swearing or 'undesirearable scenes for teens'.
Pre-listening activity; in groups of 3 or 4 I woud ask students to make up a list with words related to marriage and wedding party.
While-listening-activity; Ask student to check the words they saw or listened from their lists.
The 'wow' moment for this activity is reserved for the Production Stage. My idea is to separate the class in two groups and ask them to propose the teacher to marry them for the semester or even the year. To do so, they should talk about their strenghts, expectations and what they are going to do to make the relationship work. Lots of fun and creativitity for this first day of class!!!