Coronavirus Resources for ELT

Tomiko Breland
Tomiko Breland

As the new coronavirus (COVID-19) evolves and spreads globally, closing down public venues, shuttering people in their homes, and suspending schooling, many teachers are left unsure what to do. English language learners and their families can find themselves in a particularly stressful place if they don’t have the language proficiency to fully understand the facts about the virus and discern truth from misinformation. Additionally, because the epicenter of the outbreak is located in China, some people identifying as Asian and Asian American have been the subject of racially charged bullying and aggression.

All of this means that it’s crucial to provide our students—English learners and proficient English speakers alike—and their families with accurate and updated information that they can comprehend, whether you’re still teaching face to face or all your classes have moved online. Here are some resources for teaching and learning to help you through this challenging time. Continue reading

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The Power of Stories, Part 1: Researchers as Storytellers

Nathan Thomas
Nathan Thomas

One of the aims of TESOL’s Research Professional Council, as indicated in the TESOL Research Agenda, is to support the efforts of those new to conducting research. This blog post explores why stories are so important to sound research and how new researchers can communicate their project stories. Continue reading

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Taking Your Teaching Online

Stephanie Marcotte
Stephanie Marcotte

With the physical and social distancing surrounding COVID-19, educators are tasked with moving their physical classes into an online space. This is an exciting adventure; however, it can be equally as stressful. This is especially true under the conditions surrounding COVID-19.

To provide some scaffolding throughout this transition, this blog provides information about choosing between synchronous and asynchronous online learning, selecting a learning management system, selecting resources for virtual call-in classes, utilizing free resources, and possible online activities to integrate into your online class. These are fundamental areas to think about as you transition into online teaching. Continue reading

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Responding to COVID-19: Educator First Steps

Stephanie Marcotte
Stephanie Marcotte

The transition to social distancing and online teaching due to COVID-19 has required many educators to quickly and feverishly revamp their courses and teaching. Public schools and colleges, private language schools, and community programs are having to create a “Plan B” in order to keep students learning while also adapting to the changing pandemic paradigms. With all of this change, it is important to sit down, breathe, and create a plan. Continue reading

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English Learners and K–3 Grade Retention

Judie Haynes
Judie Haynes

Spring is the time of year in many schools when serious discussions about retaining students begins. English learners (ELs) in K–3 are likely subjects these discussions. Teachers of ELs need to be advocates for their young students during these discussions. It’s my belief that grade retention isn’t usually helpful academically and it can be devastating emotionally. Continue reading

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Serious Games for the Classroom

Jeff Kuhn
Jeff Kuhn

Greetings and welcome to another edition of the TESOL games and learning blog!

When searching for video games to incorporate into the classroom, choices often fall into two broad categories: educational games and commercial off-the-shelf (CotS) games.

Serious games is a lesser known category that overlaps with both educational and CotS games. Serious games are digital or analogue games designed to educate, train, or inform players on a particular topic. The term gained traction is the early 2000s and solidified as a movement to use the interactive nature of games to engage students in challenging topics or foster empathy in students through interactive storytelling. Continue reading

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Writing-Focused Sessions at TESOL 2020

Betsy Gilliland
Betsy Gilliland

March means it’s almost time for the annual TESOL Convention, which this year will take place in vibrant Denver, Colorado. If you are attending the Convention, you have myriad opportunities to participate in workshops and listen to speakers talking about second language (L2) writing teaching and research.

This blog post provides an overview of the conference sessions organized by the Second Language Writing Interest Section (SLWIS) and then presents some selected sessions that I found in the Conference Program while searching for sessions with “writing” or “composition” in their title, as well as sessions in the Reading, Writing, and Literacies strand. Continue reading

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Evaluation of Program Models for ELs: Let’s Check and Reflect

Ayanna Cooper
Ayanna Cooper

Very rarely do the words evaluation or audit invoke happy, anticipatory emotions. Evaluation of English language programs is a necessary and helpful part of assuring equity for English learners (ELs). The topic of this blog is about resources available to support an EL program evaluation. Awareness of resources available prior to being formally evaluated allows for more time to see what’s out there. Check out the resources in this blog in advance to reflect on your program model without the added pressure of getting it done hurriedly to meet an audit deadline. Continue reading

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