| Understand what you read helps you read more, understand better, learn new words, and teach more effectively.

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Simplify any text and develop vocabulary lessons. The site is also able to indicate the difficulty level of any text you input. Definitely a useful site for the ELL.

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4 Reasons to Start Class With a Poem Each Day

This article says it all. I have introduced poems into my early ESL classes and it has gone down well with the students. Last term, I found two poems that I felt were accessible to students that fit in with the science theme, earth sciences, that I was covering at the time. The poems on Autumn and Spring were short and easily understood given that we had been exploring the vocabulary of those topics. One poem was very accessible and suitable for the language level of the whole class. I projected that poem on the screen and after reading the poem aloud, I got them to locate information eg. words linked to what people do during the season, what we can see etc. It was a great review of learnt concepts and introduction to new ones. With the second poem, I decided that it may be too difficult for some of my struggling students, so I introduced it in small groups. I got a small group each to rotate activities, and each group came to me to listen to and talk about the poem. This intimate exploration of the poem worked well as students felt comfortable exploring their interpretation of the poem.

Make a daily habit of starting every ELA class with a poem — they’re short, intense, connect to other reading, and inspire student writing.

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How I Use ‘Check For Understanding’ Questions In My Teaching –

How I Use ‘Check For Understanding’ Questions In My Teaching by Dan Henderson, Author of That’s Special: A Survival Guide To Teaching As adults we often take for granted our wide range of vocabulary and the comprehension that comes with applying knowledge while writing. Too often in my younger years […]

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A rather honest and refreshing read. The perils of not checking for understanding are presented through this sharing of a harrowing classroom experience.  We should never make assumptions about what our students take away from their learning experiences. Rather, we should find ways to pre-empt any misconceptions, and clarify issues after the lesson.

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High School Teachers Tune In Students With Podcasts

Podcast assignments can show teens another way to tell stories.

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This news article explores the use of podcasts in high school classrooms. There are suggestions on how to do this and some links that I will explore. This will be a valuable tool for esl learners but I’ll have to explore further into the prior knowledge and skills that these students will require before to enable them to access the value of the tool.

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