Thursday, September 12, 2019

Teachers' Guide to Social Media

I've spent a bit of time this year cultivating my social media and I thought this would be a good opportunity to share some of the things I have learnt. I should stress that everything here is based on my personal experience and I'm not some kind of social media expert. But then again, who is?

For my site, roadtogrammar.com, I experimented with the following:

  • Twitter
  • Facebook
  • Pinterest
  • Instagram
  • YouTube
I was also involved to some extent with a social media campaign for the e-learning company I used to work for, so some of my experience derives from there, too.

Let me start with my most important advice: use a separate account from your personal account. And, in fact, use a separate account for each of your interests, so if you are into baking, politics and teaching, set up a Twitter account for each one. I see a lot of teachers posting about politics and it really puts people off. Similarly, people who follow you for your baking recipes aren’t interested in IELTS tips.

My personal goals for social media were threefold: 1) to gain and interact with followers, just for the fun of it 2) to share discussions with other teachers 3) to promote my website. After some experimentation, I decided on the following format, which I could use for vocabulary and grammar tips:





























Sunday, September 08, 2019

Saturday, September 07, 2019

Microlessons: Eating Verbs

Here is a new microlesson featuring seven specific action verbs for eating and drinking: chew, gulp, chomp, munch, wolf down, swallow and nibble.

http://www.roadtogrammar.com/microlessons/?1?aaw


Sample:


Tuesday, September 03, 2019

Vocab Presentation Set: The Supernatural (B1+)

Here is a set of 14 vocabulary items related to the supernatural.

It's designed for use with a smartboard, but students can also see it on their phones.

This set is suitable for high B1s and up.

URL:

http://roadtogrammar.com/vocabulary/supernatural/

Sample:




Friday, August 30, 2019

New Game: Drop Two

Here is a new game for ESL learners, called Drop Two. This game is especially good for ELEMENTARY level learners, as all the words are quite simple.

The aim of the game is to remove two letters from the row to form a word that matches the clue. For example, below we can remove the letters G and V to form BLUE.

Play the game here:

www.roadtogrammar.com/droptwo


Microlesson: Uses of the Word POINT

Here is a new microlesson on the many interesting uses of the word POINT. Teachrs, this is a great slideshow to start your lesson with.

http://www.roadtogrammar.com/microlessons/index.html?&1&aav


Sample:


Wednesday, August 21, 2019

Slang


I noticed that some English learners really struggle with the concept of slang. Sometimes, they confuse the word with accent - I have heard my students say, "I can't understand his slang," but upon probing further, I find that they meant they couldn't understand the person's accent.

Recently, I posted about the word ain't and noticed that my students were very confused about it. They had been told that it is wrong to use the word ain't and so they couldn't understand why I would post it as a vocabulary item. They were also discussing whether or not it is correct to use gonna, wanna and hafta.

I suppose that the issue is that they were looking at it as a black and white issue. We have formal and informal English. A good example is purchase vs buy. We have spoken and written English (going to vs gonna). A word like ain't is very informal English, but not 'wrong'. We would also expect it to be used by people with certain backgrounds.

As for teaching it as a vocab item, even if it not recommended that students use it, they should be able to recognise it when they hear it in a song or on a TV show.


Friday, August 09, 2019

Microlesson: Expressive Writing

Try this quickie lesson to turn a sentence like this:

      A man was riding a horse.

...into this:

     It was a beautiful day in Montana and George was galloping on a magnificent horse, but all he could think of was Susan.
Link here:

http://www.roadtogrammar.com/microlessons/index.html?&1&aas

Monday, June 03, 2019

New Resource: Articles

Here is a new resource: an extended practice activity on articles.

There are 55 questions in total, and it covers the basic rules of articles, with notes provided. This activity is suitable for A1-B2 standard learners (A1 with guidance, A2-B1 with or without guidance).

Try it here:

http://www.roadtogrammar.com/articles/


Friday, May 31, 2019

Microlessons

Microlessons are a new feature on Roadtogramar.com. This is part of the initiative to bring more visual and picture-based content to the site.

Each one features a few quick slides with a learning point presented in a nice, visual style. Microlessons are updated every week.

You can see the current microlesson on the home page. Just click beside the dot. Or you can see the index of all available lessons here:

http://www.roadtogrammar.com/microlessons/contents.html




Monday, May 27, 2019

New Game: Word Stacks

I've uploaded a new word game which should be a lot of fun for English learners to try.

The premise is very simple: use a stack of letters to make a word. The longer the word, the more points. The game ends when the user can no longer find a word. You'll have to be careful not to let the more difficult letters (x, q, z) stack up.

You can try the game here:

http://www.roadtogrammar.com/wordstacks/







Friday, May 10, 2019

Words and Phrases for Talking about Money

Here is a new picture-based activity with words and phrases for talking about money. There are twenty phrases in total and it is suitable for A2-B2 level.

Below are screenshots from the activity on a laptop and phone.

Try the activity here: http://roadtogrammar.com/talkingmoney/






Wednesday, May 08, 2019

Two Common Classroom Mistakes

Teachers, do your students make these mistakes? If so, maybe these cards can help. Feel free to save, print or use them in any way.





Teachers' Guide to Social Media

I've spent a bit of time this year cultivating my social media and I thought this would be a good opportunity to share some of the thing...