Your smartphone – a teaching resource in the 1:1 classroom Pt2
Here are 4 more ideas using free, commonly found apps in you homestay teaching:
1. Notes – get your student to make notes of their homework / grammar / vocab, etc on the Notes app. Ask them to write down any questions that might pop up in their own time and to share the note with you to discuss in the following lesson.
2. FaceTime / Skype – These are great apps to practise telephone / conference call skills. If your lesson is focusing on teaching telephone skills then instead of an unnatural role play sitting across from eachother, both teacher and student can be in different rooms to make the task slightly more realistic. Add background noise to add to the authenticity of the task.
With Skype you could have a converstation with two or more people at the same time. This would be good not only for conference skills but for general language of interrupting, asking for information, clarification, etc.
3. Facebook – It is highly recommended that you set up a different FB page from your own personal one. Have a teacher FB page to avoid any potential crossing of boundaries in teacher/student relationships. You could ask your student to write up a daily post (in English – obviously) on what they have done/learnt that day during their stay with you. (This is perhaps a contemporary version of getting them to write a daily dairy/journal entry.) Get them to share it with their friends and family and get them to reply in English too.
You can also share any useful language learning websites with your student via your FB page. Or even set them a reading task with questions on FB which they have to answer. Their friends could Like/Comment/Share too, making the homestay experience a little less isolating for the student. It also gives them an audience (other than you, the teacher) to motivate them and maybe to compete with?
4. Games – There’s a plethora of English language game apps from quizzes to wordsearches to phonics to name but a few. There’s Scrabble and Countdown and Catchphrase, etc. Download some and get playing. They are not all good quality but get your student to be a critical reviewer of some of them. Get them to judge if and how they are helpful to their language learning.
These are but a few suggestions. If you have any more ideas on how to make the most of your smartphone in lessons, please feel free to comment here. The possibilities are limitless.