Teachers’ Weekly Self-Assessment Guide

Screen Shot 2016-04-15 at 6.35.02 PMVia Twitter, Facebook, and Skype, Act 2 Educational Consultants LLC asked experienced teachers around the world what they would advise new teachers to include on their weekly to-do list. This certainly wasn’t meant to give those new teachers more work, but was meant rather to help lighten their loads and increase their effectiveness as educators by borrowing from the valuable experiences of their senior, global colleagues.

We are fortunate to have received twenty-five responses so far, and the poll is still open for others to add their thoughts. The suggestions deal with academics as well as with relationship building and avoiding teacher burnout.

I am happy to pass these suggestions on to you in hopes that you will share them with your colleagues, both new and seasoned. These suggestions can benefit all teachers, and, in turn, their administrators, and their students.

Do you have an idea that has helped you be more successful in the classroom?

An ESL Listening Activity: Black Holes


Black Holes Part 1            Black Holes Part 2

(To run this presentation, you will need PowerPoint as well as Poll Everywhere, which has a free version, installed on your device.  (This does not play, however, on PCs. I am currently trying to figure that out!)

This is an interactive listening activity for intermediate to high-level English language learners who are interested in learning more about science and black holes and who appreciate the opportunity to listen to native English speakers talking at their normal pace. This two-part lesson utilizes the YouTube video, Black Holes for Beginners by Gleanix, which I edited into segments, each with a follow-up question based on the content of that segment. The free version of Poll Everywhere is used as the medium for student interaction and assessment.

An ESL Listening Activity: Black Holes can be used in the face-to-face or blended classroom as well as online. Students may be polled anonymously in a group or individually to get an overview of their understanding of the material presented. Students are able to respond to the questions on their cell phones, tablets, or computers, and they can see the group’s responses immediately for further discussion.

Because of my familiarity with PowerPoint for Windows and my new Mac, I chose PowerPoint for Mac as my lesson’s platform, which also requires the use of PowerPoint Presenter App for Mac, a free download. I understand that the apps I have used lend themselves equally well to Keynote although I have not experimented with that program yet since I am a new Mac user.

This lesson is divided into two parts only because of file size. It is meant to be covered in one class period.

black hole trivia

My next post will explain how to segment YouTube videos on a Mac.


Exercise: Using the articles, “a,” “an,” and “the”

A Brief History of ESL Methods and Approaches via Twitter


Listening Activity: Theme Song from the Movie “Titanic”

Here is a listening activity for my ESL students based on Céline Dion’s multiple platinum hit, “My Heart Will Go On.” We are reading about the sinking of the Titanic, and I simply thought this would be an enjoyable listening activity for the students, and a way for them to sing along with this very popular song. I hope your students enjoy it, too.

Watch the YouTube video, and then select the correct missing lyrics.


Listening Activity: “Do You Want to Build a Snowman?” from Disney’s Frozen

Watch the YouTube clip from Disney’s movie, Frozen. Then, play the video again and, on the form below the video, select the words that are missing from the song lyrics. Be sure to submit your answers when you finish. If you have a question or a comment, please let me know at the bottom of this blog post! Thank you. I hope you enjoy this exercise! Don’t forget to check your work when you finish!

See also the listening exercise from Frozen, “Let It Go!”


My Thanksgiving Tribute to Technology

I am grateful for…

  1. …Facebook, Skype, email and instant messaging which have made communication with my friends and family wherever they are fun, cheap, and easy. No more goodbyes but rather “talk to you soon!”
  2. …Google for giving me access to all the information I could possibly need or want, and for making it easier and easier to find the answers to my questions.
  3. …storage clouds like Dropbox, iCloud, and Google Drive for helping me to keep my computer clean and share information with family and colleagues easily.
  4. …iTunes, Pandora, and YouTube for free access to my musical life support.
  5. …Snapchat for showing me the silly side of my adult children.
  6. …iMovie for helping me make movies I am proud of without a great deal of technical knowledge.
  7. …iPhone for letting me carry my computer and data with me wherever I go, and for waking me up on time!
  8. …Prezi and Power Point for being the tools I use most for my presentations, and Pear Deck and Nearpod for making my presentations more accessible and interactive for my students.
  9. …Twitter and my ever-growing and ever-changing PLN for being constant sources of information and professional development.
  10. And lastly, I am grateful for my family and their patience and encouragement as I learn to use the new technologies and share what I learn with my local and global colleagues and students.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!



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