Showing posts from 2010

Edublog Awards 2010

The Edublog Awards 2010  are now open for nomination! As the site says, "This is our chance to nominate and celebrate " the achievements of edubloggers, twitterers, podcasters, video makers, online communities, wiki hosts and other web based users of educational technology." Here are my nominations (I have decided just to nominate in categories that were very clear for me) and some of the reasons why I chose them: Best individual blog : I think there are few people who do so much to encourage blogging in ELT (indeed in education itself) more than Karenne Sylvester. Her posts are often provocative, always thoughtful, and never boring. She deserves to win this award for services above and beyond the call of duty to educational blogging. Best individual tweeter :  Shelly is a dynamo of positivity who energises everything she gets involved with. She's very generous with her time and does so much to pr

6 Tips for effective ICT use - ELT Peru Networks workshop for Teachers

I was recently honoured when  Leo Marin in Peru invited me to prepare a video message for teachers attending the ELT Peru Networks Event, Transforming English through Technology! that took place today. This is the video I made for the teachers: I hope the event went well - I have now found a programme of the workshop online and see that my video (which lasts just over 3 minutes) and my colleague Graeme Hodgson's presentation was scheduled for an hour! I hope Graeme prepared a longer video session, or that they were able to have a discussion about the contents of both videos! Still waiting for feedback from Leo to find out...

Is the ELT blogging honeymoon over?

Recently, Alex Case of TEFLTASTIC asked if the TEFL blogging boom was over. He was, of course, referring to the blogging explosion that happened over the last year or so in ELT, with lots of teachers who'd previously never done so starting blogs, and the fact that the hyper-activity of nine months or so has now died down. In particular, he cited the reduction in mutual linking and commenting. I'm not sure if this lull has to do with the summer, and that once the new term begins (at least for many teachers in Europe), there'll be an increase in activity again. Time will tell. Alex wondered if the drop in activity was due to Twitter, but if anything, I think Twitter was probably behind the increase in blogging that ocurred in 2009. As this micro-blogging site took off and lots more teachers saw the value of it and got used to sharing their thoughts in 140 characters, I believe many of them then realised that sometimes, 140 characters wasn't enough, and the logical prog

David Crystal - British Council Isle in Second Life

On Monday and Tuesday next week, two of David Crystal's talks will be rebroadcast live on the British Council Isle in Second Life Here are the details: David Crystal Second Life July 2010

Private or Public? Has Facebook changed the privacy game?

As Facebook starts to become more and more a part of people's online lives   there seems to be a growing number of commentators who have decided to deactivate or delete their accounts. Usually concerned about privacy issues , some people are opting out of Facebook and choosing not to take part in the social media revolution .   There are others, however, who have now started questioning this. Here's one that's worth a visit: ' Is Deleting Your Facebook Account Really a Good Idea? '  Two points are made here that are particularly worthy of discussion: 1) As Facebook becomes more and more useful as a source of public data, and as it becomes a greater part of the Web, do you think it's a wise decision to abandon Facebook?  2) The whole idea of privacy is changing, being re-written by anyone who has a life online. Isn't it better to consider everything you do online to be public?   As a teacher, like it or not, at sometime you're going to have photos

Looking for students for AVALON Learning pilot courses

If anyone knows students who are interested, there are two free courses for English students starting in Second Life later this month, organised through the AVALON EU funded project . The first is a Speaking Skills course for B1 students preparing for the Cambridge First Certificate in English (FCE) . The details are in the document below. AVALON FCE Speaking Skills May 2010 The second is a Business English course for B1 (upper intermediate) and above students (see document below for details) AVALON Business English May 2010

Reflections on recent conferences (part one) : ISTEK

I know this is very late, but I want to add my two pennies worth to the growing number of blog posts about the extraordinary ISTEK conference  that was held on 27-28 March 2010 at Yeditepe University in Istanbul. I'm not sure I know of an ELT conference that has generated so much online discussion. ISTEK the conference (and post-conference) has been the one everyone has been talking about. I started this post shortly after attending and then hesitated in posting as a fierce blog-storm brewed. Now that the hurricane seems to have passed,I thought I'd pick up where I left off, and write my account of the event as a record for me if nothing else. Here's a list of the posts I know have been written about ISTEK (apologies in advance to those I've missed off). Two other blog posts and their many comments have now been deleted, but anyone who is curious enough can follow the digital footprints to see what the fuss was all about: Ken Wilson's overview of the event  Se

It's worth taking a look at this blog - mobile learning

I've just been tagged by Sheetal Makhan  (be sure to check out her great blog btw) and this is as good an excuse as any to jump back into blogging again after a long absence. I've actually got a backlog of posts I've started (about the ISTEK conference , IATEFL and more), but rather than try to keep this chronological, I thought I'd just jump in with this. The idea is for every blogger tagged to list ten blogs worth looking at, and for those who are tagged to do the same. That way, we'll be able to point people to blogs that would otherwise be overlooked and increase the community aspect of the blogosphere. After staying clear of Mobile Learning (or M-Learning) for a long time (mostly from lack of time I suppose) I'm currently trying to catch up on what I've missed and what better way of doing this is there than checking on the blogosphere and what people are writing there about the subject. So, my list contains bloggers who are all covering mobi

IATEFL 2010, Tweet-Ups and the year of the PLN

Just been going through the drafts of my blog and found this one from 2010. I'm not sure why I didn't finish it/publish it back then (written November 2012)

15th EFL / ESL /ELL blog carnival

The fifteenth edition of the EFL/ESL/EEL carnival is now published, and I'm very happy to be a part of it. The carnival is a great way of providing a snapshot of what people have been blogging about recently in the world of ELT. This time round the topics are: Thought-provoking pedagogy Teaching effectively with technology Presentation and social media advice Issues to ponder There's so much good stuff here, it will take you a while to digest it - that's the other thing about the carnival : it's a great way of getting to know bloggers that you may not have come across before.  Of all the posts in the carnival, I particularly enjoyed Ozge Karaoglu's How to survive in 2010 - digitally  and Marisa Constantinides' Don't Forget the Pedagogy . Karenee Sylvester's Powerpointing Me suggests a great way of using this technology well with a new class and Jeremy Harmer's On being nervous  is a great read for anyone who's ever presented or is t

APLaNet - Exciting New Professional Development Opportunity for Language Teachers

APLANet is a new European Union project proposal which aims to help language teachers to develop their own  Personal Learning Network (PLN)  . We are looking for two types of people/organisations at the moment:  Educators who are skilled in using social networking tools and who would be interested in helping other teachers create their own  Personal Learning Network   using tools such as Twitter , Facebook , Ning , etc. Teachers who would like to build their own PLN  and would be interested in being mentored, piloting materials, etc. as part of  their professional development. Both of these would be recognised on the project documents as 'Associate Partners' (EU project trerminology which sounds more formal than it actually is) and would receive recognition in the form of a certificate of participation as well as a great opportunity to form part of an exciting new community of language professionals. Think you're interested? Or know of anyone who may be interest

2010 - the year of the Personal Learning Network?

One of the things I'll remember 2009 for is it was the first year that mainstream ELT teachers really took to using social media. This is something that Lindsay Clandfield mentions in a recent blog post on language teaching trends of the 00s ). It was particularly interesting to be able to see blogs being set up by educators such as Ken Wilson , Jeremy Harmer and Scott Thornbury . Of all the internet memes that emerged in 2009, it was surely  PLN ( Personal Learning Network ) that caught the attention of  the blogging educators . The Twittering Classes  This was mainly due to the emergence of  Twitter  as an essential tool for the connected teacher, although there are still many teachers who have decided it's not for them. Some have been put off by its  trendiness  (in the UK it became much talked-about because of  Stephen Fry  and other celebrities - the same seems to have been true in other places too) and others don't see the point of the 140 character limitation


Happy New Year everyone! Why not start 2010 with some professional development courtesy of TESOL's Electronic village Online ? The best place for educators to start, especially if they are new to teaching and learning languages with technology is the Becoming a Webhead (BaW2010) session . Run every year, this is the perfect introduction to the Webheads community of practice and it's specially suitable for those teachers who are interested in using technology but who are unsure of where to start. After joining the BaW2010 Yahoo group , you'll be introduced to a dazzling array of possibilities and will be helped every step of the way by experienced and friendly mentors. By the end of the six week session, teachers will have a much better idea of how they can start to introduce technology into their classroom to enhance their lessons and will also be part of a supportive community of like-minded teachers they can draw on for inspiration and help. For those of you with more exp