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Fruitful, Friendly and Fun Tips Gained from Lockdown Learning During COVID-19

by Charmian Lezmy | 22 Jul 2020
Resource Description: Teaching tips for online teaching during the COVID-19 lockdown.
Audience: Secondary
Audience Language Proficiency: Advanced, Intermediate
Teaching Tip:
  • Feedback and rigor must be constant and even immediate where possible so this does require a certain amount of availability.
  • Motivation, interest and dynamics are the key words in successful online teaching. These assets are reflected in interesting tasks (for example, 'What's Your Corona Persona?' and this capital city emoji quiz).
  • Quizzes and competitions via WhatsApp have been a great success: from the emoji - deciphering style or the trivia type (I have a plethora of these competitions to share too) – inventing your own emoji quizzes is challenging too!
  • Another inspiring task, and again, all these ideas are relevant to adult online forums and to students, is the Covidiom* (*my contribution to the list) based on neologisms that have sprung up since the outbreak of the pandemic. I have an amazing collection of student Covidioms. I am sure this is great fun to do with everybody.
  • Linguistic issues such as the medical/outer space word 'capsule' - here in Israel or the more friendly 'bubble' to designate safety groups in Great Britain can be discussed.  Words and slogans have great influence, so creating one's own repertoire is also thought provoking.
  • 'Shelfies' not selfies, is a great task too – taking a picture of a shelf in your house and explaining why you chose it: I was surprised by some of the moving explanations and this photo analysis is suitable for all levels. Video clip analysis proved to be exciting, but the clips must be short and poignant. Ideas can be discussed on live platforms and then written up and submitted.
  • Finally, I have had very many guest speakers coming in during my Zoom sessions to discuss matters from international law regarding COVID-19 to how reporters create their stories during lock-down. Please feel free to contact me if this situation continues. It is inspiring to have a bank of all our ideas.

The success of the above examples in online forums all come down to leadership qualities; how to lead a group, how to assess what works and what doesn't, and of course, how to ensure interaction of the greatest number of participants with maximal enjoyment.

Useful Links:
TESOL Interest Section: English as a Foreign Language, Second Language Writing