Newsletter #12

Newsletter #12
Good morning

When I started this newsletter, I decided I'd try it out for three months and see what happened. The good news is that people seem to like it, I enjoy writing it and I've had loads of positive comments so I've decided to carry on... BUT it's that time of year and I want to take it a bit easier over Christmas, so this month, I'm going to spend some time with my family and I'll be back with more in January. Before that, though, it being that time of year, I have a few gifts for you...a video with some thoughts about teaching vocabulary, a final observation challenge, and a great online language learning tool with some hints on how to get the best out of it.

Thinking about teaching vocabulary?
What does it mean to really KNOW a word? What will your learners struggle with and how can you anticipate these problems? This video is a walk through some of the aspects of meaning, form and pronunciation it's wise to consider when you are planning to teach new vocabulary.

Sneak preview- A final observational challenge for you
It's true that there is only so much reflection that anyone wants at any one time, but I hope that you have tried out one or two of the exercises I've suggested over the past month- if not, it's not too late to go back and do so! There has been a strong emphasis on classroom talk up to now, so this week, as a final challenge, I want you to consider the visual experience that your learners have as you teach, particularly online. Watch this video for the challenge and also for some tip tips and websites to make your lessons a visual feast.

Since our video for this week looks at vocabulary, I want to share my favourite tool for learners to help them learn vocabulary. Rote learning has a bad name, and clearly just learning word lists isn't the only or main part of learning a language, but the truth is that you can't communicate if you can't remember the words to communicate with and Quizlet is a wonderful free tool to make electronic (and downloadable) flashcards to help with this. It's likely that you've already used it, but I also wanted to share a video on how to make Quizlet flash cards from Russell Stannard and an inspirational webinar from Leo Selivan (Lexical Leo) that has some useful ideas on how to use Quizlet cards, not just for learning individual words, but also chunks of language.

So, that's it for 2020. I hope that you have a really happy Christmas if you celebrate it, and let's hope that 2021 brings us all a bit of a return to a normal life.

Jo Gakonga
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