A Great Online Resource: Explanatory Videos for ELT

It’s easy to get stuck using the same lesson plan template. Throwing in something new from time to time (in this case, a new teaching technique or short video segment) can really get students’ attention and help them stay focused during class. Try using VideoClass, which is an educational website that contains a number of videos related to the various subject areas taught in the United States, including English. These videos are great to watch if you want to see how someone else explained a particularly tricky concept before trying to do it yourself. Additionally, you can just play a video for your students either to teach something new or to reinforce something you have already covered in class.

Unfortunately, there are several subtopics in the English section that have no videos at this time, but this could work to your advantage, too. By asking more advanced students to create videos for those topics, they could really demonstrate their mastery of the subject—and help the community as a whole. It would be an excellent project, as students would be actively creating content with the expectation that other students around the world would have access to it. VideoClass provides all the tools you need to make a great video, so it is really simple.

If you are interested in more educational videos, I always start my search with YouTube, but actually TeacherTube might be a better choice, depending on what you are looking for, because there are a ton of videos posted. They are all related to teaching and are grouped by subject area just like on VideoClass. Do you use videos in your classes? If so, where do you usually get them, and how do you find they work best with your students?

About Tara Arntsen

Tara Arntsen
Tara Arntsen recently completed her Master's degree in Teaching-TESOL at the University of Southern California. She currently teaches in the Intensive English Program at Northern State University in Aberdeen, South Dakota. She has taught ESOL in China, Japan, and Cambodia as well as online. Her primary interests are communicative teaching methods and the use of technology in education.
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5 Responses to A Great Online Resource: Explanatory Videos for ELT

  1. Huw Jarvis says:

    Hi Xia and Tara For teacher development TESOL based resources you might find the 51 YouTube talks hosted by TESOLacademic.org of interest. The Keynotes are from many leaders in our field. Please share and feedback Huw :-)

    • Tara Arntsen Tara Arntsen says:

      Thank you for sending that site our way, Huw! TESOL academic.org looks like a great site to help teachers stay up to date on TESOL research. I look forward to watching those talks and learning even more. Would I be able to write up a short blog post about the site to help spread the word? Thanks again for your comment!

      • Huw Jarvis says:

        Hi Tara By all means please do write a short blog about the site. The great thing about technology is the more connected people are the better it gets and for me as a teacher trainer it’s wonderful to see teachers move from recipients to active participants.

  2. xia wu says:

    Hello, Tara Arntsen
    As a new TESOL student, we began to study “content-based” instruction last week and will design class-plan at the end of this semester. I am so excited about these new methods since I reckon the implement can really make students to engage on class. However, as a new teacher, I find the resource I can use is limited, probably because I haven’ explored a lot. When I saw your blogs as well as the website you recommended, I was excited. The videos on this website is wonderful and I will try to use them in my lesson-plan.
    Thank you

    • Tara Arntsen Tara Arntsen says:

      Hi Xia! Thank you so much for your comments. I think there are just a ton of resources out there for teachers that we just really aren’t aware of or don’t take the time to find/explore for ourselves. With my posts, I try to share some of the more interesting and helpful sites that I’ve found. I hope you can use them both as part of your TESOL coursework and in your classroom. Feel free to share your experiences with any of the sites I mention or new ones that you’ve found in the comments section.

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