Hello, ESPers worldwide!
The recent news about the post-college exam in the United States has caused me to think about how we can best prepare our students for employment.
Here are links to two articles on the post-college exam:
- MSN News: “A post-college SAT awaits many incoming students“
- USA Today: “Post-college exam seeks to determine employability“
August 28th marked the 50th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.’s I Have a Dream speech. This speech, by one of America’s greatest orators, is a perfect vehicle for introducing advanced adult ELLs to both the history of the civil rights struggle in America and to one of the rhetorical devices Dr. King used to such stirring effect—parallelism.
After posting the first blog in this series on August 14, I received an e-mail asking about the name of this blog: Teaching and Learning Online (TLO). As we are all language teachers, in one way or another, the reader asked why the name was not, for example, Online Learning and Teaching. That was a very good question, so I thought it would be useful to explain my belief that “online” should “come at the end.”
As a TESOL professional of color, I first heard the phrase “people of color” shortly after Martin Luther King Jr referred to “citizens of color” in 1963. And although the phrase can still spark a lively debate even today, the phrase “forefronted” being people and citizens first, and being “colored” second.
(L to R) TESOL Executive Director Rosa Aronson;
TESOL Past President Christine Coombe;
AAELTA President Abayneh Haile
(photo credit Matt Sahr)
As part of my summer vacation, I had the great pleasure of serving as a plenary speaker at the TESOL Symposium on K–12 Teacher Development and Training on August 12, 2012 and the 12th Annual CAMELTA Congress on August 13–14, 2013. This 1-day event planned jointly with TESOL International Association and CAMELTA (Cameroon English Language and Literature Teachers Association) and held at the Catholic University of Central Africa, Ekounou Campus in Yaounde, Cameroon, provided a unique opportunity for teachers, teacher trainers and administrators in Cameroon, Africa, and EFL contexts worldwide to explore effective policies and practices in K–12 teacher development.
The concept of rhetorical situation is not easy to grasp for even the most advanced ESL writers. Even when they seem to understand it conceptually, they still may have a hard time applying it to their own writing. The interactive classroom activity that I include in today’s entry provides examples and application of purpose, audience, genre, stance, and media, and it can also serve as a great review of material that you addressed in class about the topic.
While I was teaching internationally, none of my schools ever had their own software to help teachers with their record keeping (for things like grades and attendance), but there are a number of free sites that help teachers do just that. From what I’ve found, it seems like Engrade, Edmodo, and Schoology are three of the best/most popular.
I have the most experience with Engrade, which was recommended to me by a former coworker. I mentioned this site briefly in an earlier post when talking about AllThink.
This summer, I was fortunate to co-teach an English for Academic Purposes class with the head of the English Language Institute at my college. This gave me a welcome opportunity to learn from an experienced colleague about a whole new array of teaching tools. Although we both made extensive use of TED Talks in class (a resource described in one of my earlier posts), I became aware, for the first time, of another invaluable online listening resource this summer: Academic Earth.
Although not specifically geared to international students, Academic Earth gives immigrant and international students in ESL programs worldwide a chance to vicariously experience life in a challenging university lecture hall.
In Tara Arntsen’s “Technology in Education” TESOL blog, in March, she wrote about her experience of being a student, taking an online MA at the University of Southern California (“From the Perspective of a Student“). One of Tara’s main points was: “Learning online is still learning.” And in her August 6 post,”Teaching English Online: From the Perspective of a Teacher,” Tara’s concluding point was that: “Teaching online is both completely different and absolutely the same as teaching in a classroom.”
I have enjoyed reading Tara’s postings, which made me reflect on my own learning and teaching experiences, first as a student, then as a teacher, and this area of teaching and learning online seemed big enough, and growing fast enough, to warrant its own little corner of the Blogosphere. But as this is the first of these biweekly blogs, I should start with a “confession,” which is this: My relationship with technology of all kinds—online and off—is ambivalent.
Hello, ESPers worldwide!
I am always on the lookout for free resources that I can share with other ESPers. That is why I was especially pleased to read about the decision of the University of California to open its research to the public for free!
Here are some useful links:
- UC Open Access Policy
- Frequently Asked Questions