Do you feel overwhelmed by the number of digital learning tools on the internet, and you don’t know how to choose one for your ESL class?
It’s perfectly okay and you know what? We’ve got your back on this one!
In this post, we’ll reveal our 5 tips to help you find the best digital tool for your ESL class.
1. Bring something new to your course
When choosing a digital tool, it’s important to ask yourself how it is going to complement the value you give students - not replace you. Think: how can technology help me step up my course content and further engage my students?
Identify areas of your course that you wish you could focus more on, but can't because of a lack of time or resources. For example, a lot of English teachers find it hard to work on pronunciation (lack of time and large classes you say?). So, why not choose a tool that can help you overcome that?
2. Get the ready-to-use content you need (and deserve)
Alright, we know that you’re secretly going through every teacher Facebook group to find new ideas and activities for your lessons. So, to free up some scrolling time, take this tip very seriously 😏Choose a tool that integrates online as well as in-person class content and thank us later.
Whether it’s worksheets, interactive activities, fun games, everything is worth taking. Use your class time to put what your students have learned with the tool into practice and go one step further.
3. Ask yourself: “Do I want a tool that is used collaboratively or individually? Or even both?”
If you want to help this one shy student at the back of the class, it might a good idea to use a collaborative tool to pair them up with a friend, or two, or ten! Working together is more fun and promotes the exchange of knowledge among students.
Kahoot can be a good tool for that type of use: check out this article to learn more about it.
This being said, individual tools are great too because technology has the power to personalize your content to each student’s needs. Differentiation is key: not everybody experiences language learning the same way or learns at the same pace.
You could suggest Quizlet to your students for their vocabulary study. This article explains how to do it.
Now, why not both? 🤩Some tools let your students work individually AND enable you to create engaging group activities. These are great to flip your classroom and get optimal results.
Check out Flowchase if you want to take blended-learning to the next level!
4. User-friendly it must be!
Technology should be easy and intuitive. Your students need to spend more time learning English and less time learning how to use a tool. Right?
5. Integrate your own teaching content
If your goal is to add a technological twist to your course without adapting its content, you may want to find a tool that lets you integrate your own materials. This is particularly valuable for English for Specific Purposes teachers. However, keep in mind that someone will have to spend some time preparing those vocabulary lists (you? 😇).
We hope that these tips have helped you understand the value EdTech brings to your teaching and how to use it to its fullest potential. Now, it’s your turn to go find the best digital tool for your ESL class. Don’t disappoint us!
Oh and one last thing: share this article on your social media to help your beloved colleagues as well (you don’t want them to remain lost as you were, do you? 🤗)