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Messages - Lindsaym97

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Technology and Teaching Reading & Writing / Online ESL Resource
« on: April 16, 2019, 11:55:37 PM »
I found an ESL resource called ESLgold. This website features resources on things such as grammar, speaking, listening, reading, and vocabulary. As far as I can tell, the website seems to be completely free. Resources are divided into categories such as low beginner and high intermediate. If you click on one of these categories, you will find things such as textbook recommendations, online quizzes, grammar explanations, and links to other online resources. Overall, this resource seems to be fairly comprehensive and has a lot of good material for teachers to use or to simply recommend to their students.

Source: [size=78%][/size]

[/size]Start learning English today! (n.d.). Retrieved April 16, 2019, from [/color]

Breaking News English is a website that has different forms of the same text, modified for different levels of English learners. Their levels go from 0 (the most beginner level) to level 6 which is classified as "upper-intermediate". Not only is each text modified to a different level, there are also various resources with each text. For example, there are audio files of the text being read at speeds such as slow, medium, fast, and fastest in addition to having ones that distinguish between British English and American English. There are also several activities with each text. While some of them seem to be a bit messy to be honest, some of them could be useful. For example, there is one grammar activity where all the articles  (a, an, the) are taken out and the student must decide what article should be placed in that blank. While it may not be the prettiest resource or most organized, there is definitely something that a teacher could get out of this resource for modified texts.


Breaking News English - News for Kids. (n.d.). Retrieved April 16, 2019, from

Attached with this post is a very short and simple compare and contrast worksheet. The first page includes a venn diagram for filling out information while the second page features 6 questions. The first four questions are guided compare/contrast statements in which the students must use what they wrote in the venn diagram to fill in the blanks with correct information. The last two questions are a "make your own sentence" -- one comparative sentence and one contrastive sentence. Students are given a small word bank in which they are able to use the compare and contrast words to help them make these sentences.

Summary & Paraphrase / Twitter Summarizing Activity
« on: April 16, 2019, 09:22:53 PM »
One of the things that I have observed both as a student and as someone more on the teaching side of things is that students get excited when an activity involves things they enjoy outside of class. This can be something like watching a youtube video of a clip of a show they really enjoy in class for example. Especially in today's day and age, almost everyone is on some sort of social media - especially students. Taking this into consideration, I have made a basic tweet template that I think could be useful for something like a summarizing activity. Tweets on Twitter only allow for a limited number of characters in each tweet, meaning you have to be short and to the point about something. This idea can easily be applied to summarizing as you're taking a larger amount of information and shortening it to just the important highlights. This resource might be useful also for having students practice journaling (as if they were tweeting their day).

Citations for images used in the activity:
Twitter free vector icons designed by Smashicons. (n.d.). Retrieved April 16, 2019, from
[/size]Twitter Tweet Icon # 91411 - Tweet Button Twitter Developers. (n.d.). Retrieved April 16, 2019, from[/color]

Thinking on my own experiences writing in a foreign language, I know that I personally struggle with remembering to add in sequence words like "then", "after", "next", etc. So I thought a small creative writing activity might be nice to have ESL learners practice writing with these sequence words. It's a pretty straightforward activity that has the students choose their favorite character (Spiderman, Harry Potter, Luke Skywalker, etc) and write a daily journal entry as if they were that character. Provided are twelve sequence words of which five they must use when writing their journal entry. I figured that having them pretend to be their favorite characters would make the activity a bit more fun than if they were just writing as themselves.

General Reading Links / Resource for Short Stories
« on: March 15, 2019, 07:17:30 PM »
I wanted to share a resource I found that features over a thousand short stories, hundreds of which feature a recording of a native English speaker reading the story aloud. The stories are divided into several different categories and are rated by their reading difficulty/reading level. After each story,
the Flesch-Kincaid grade level, Flesch reading ease score, percent of passive sentences, average number of words per sentence, and the total number of words in the story are listed. In addition to this information, a list of vocabulary words from the story is also listed. These correspond to the custom google search found on the main page where you can search for specific vocabulary words and find stories wher those words appear.

This resource might be useful for finding short stories for in class reading activities or for finding examples of vocabulary words in context.


Feedback--Peer Review / Online Peer Review & Feedback Resource
« on: March 15, 2019, 01:57:55 PM »
Many teachers utilize peer review as a way for students to get a variety of feedback on their work. Students may be able to point out or provide interesting feedback that the teacher may not have considered. Oftentimes, peer review involves in class work of students going over another student's work and then filling out a worksheet or rubric and passing it back. As an in class activity, that can leave students a little crunched for time and they may not write as many comments on the other student's work as they could. Or, because they know who they're peer reviewing, they might give every category a 10/10 when in fact there may be several things the student could improve on.

Related to this, I have found an online resource that helps with peer review and feedback. Peergrade is a resource that allows students to submit their writing assignments online and have them peer reviewed by other students anonymously. This means that the reviewer does not know whose work they are reviewing and the person being reviewed does not know who reviewed their work. In addition to this, after the peer reviewing is all submitted, students can go back and evaluate the peer reviews they received - is it detailed, helpful, and fair?

As for pricing, Peergrade has 3 different plans that can be used. The free plan allows anonymous submissions and peer reviewing for any type of file upload and there is no limit on assignments, classes, etc. The basic plan, valued at $2 per student per year, allows for everything in the free plan along with other perks like self evaluation of submitted assignments. Finally, the pro plan allows for all of the previously mentioned perks along with several other new perks like group-to-group feedback and weighted questions.

While typically used for k-12 and higher education, Peergrade is available to others who want to use the service. The instructor just needs to contact them.

The website for Peergrade:

Pricing and plan information for Peergrade:

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