Monday, January 23, 2012

Digital Tools Class, Week 3

Listening tools
This is the week I have been waiting for! More than any other skill, technology is critical for me in finding authentic useful tools for listening in my business classroom. I use The EconomistBusinessweekNPRRadio AustraliaAustralian NetworkTED and The British Council. These sites have a range of different resources, both authentic and level specific and some of them have transcripts available too. There is a range of different accents here too.

But, I am always excited to discover new resources and there are a few goodies here!!

Firstly, Teaching with TED. This is a great support to the TED talks, with extra information about the speakers, thought provoking questions and supplementary videos. It does not supply lesson plans (which I think is a good thing because these talks need to be tailored to individual classes and tastes) but gives you all the tools necessary to make a very inspired class. There are also some helpful tips on teaching with TED and doing minimal preparation in a very enlightend blog post here Kalinago English - teaching with TED.

I also liked AM New York, a project with different NY accents. I continually struggle with the fact that most of my students do business with the US (one bank in particular works directly with NY) and I have a kiwi accent! I can see all sorts of potential here.

TIME's 10 questions - although there are a lot of actors and actresses on show here, there are also important business people and politicians which should interest my students. I like the idea of getting my students to first come up with questions and then see if these questions are asked and answered in the interview. The clips aren't too long either (6-8 minutes) which is always helpful.

Movie segments to assess grammar goals - I have used before. It is great site for keeping students interested though doesn't always have a strong enough business focus for me. There is some great social language in here though which is important in the business classroom too and I have used it for units on networking and socialising out of the office.

Publish your audio - this blog has three different sites that I haven't yet explored for recording and publishing audio. I already use Vocaroo but these tools look more sophisticated and I will definitely be taking a look.

The other sites also look interesting and can be found in my delicious bookmarks (see right of blog page), but I found them to have less of a business focus and have therefore not reviewed them here.

Now to think about the lesson plan... definitely a topic for another post!


  1. Karen - congrats! I'm impressed with your blog and everything you've been doing here. Great job indeed with detailed explanation of the tools you have selected. I'm sure your lesson plan will be amazing.

  2. Dear Karen,

    It is always great to see how you have your Business students in mind when you check the possibilities we've been exploring. Excellent review! And we are glad you've found new treasures!

  3. Hi,
    Thanks for your support! I am really enjoying the course, it is just so hard to find time to look at everything! Just finished the lesson plan - done quickly and from a relatively materials light point of view... enjoy!

  4. Nice blog. As an English teacher, if you aren't already into cryptic crosswords you might like to have a peek at a series of posts I have been doing on how to solve them. They are just fantastic for clever word play. This is a link to the first post. There is now a new clue each day to solve. Enjoy.