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ESL forum > Techniques and methods in Language Teaching > TEACHING TECHNIQUES/APPS DURING LOCKDOWN    

TEACHING TECHNIQUES/APPS DURING LOCKDOWN



ascincoquinas
Portugal

TEACHING TECHNIQUES/APPS DURING LOCKDOWN
 
Hello Eslprintable members|
 
As you all know during lockdown many of us had to teach our students.
Last year as we caught out of guard, many schools decided to use different apps to solve the problem and kept on teaching the best as we could. Meanwhile a directive from my ministry of education imposed that all portuguese schools were obliged to use "Microsoft Teams".
 
If you donïŋ―t mind I would like to know if in your countries you use the same app, or a different one? If so did you find it suitable and easy to teach? 
 
I am sure you are familiar with other apps! Would you recommend a  different one? Which one?
 
 
Ascincoquinas 
  

25 Mar 2021      



cunliffe
United Kingdom

Hi Ascincoquinas,
 
My experience wonīt be very enlightening as I am a bit of a technophobe, but, just to let you know! At my school, a large secondary school in the north of England, we did use Microsoft Teams. We all found it useful, but time consuming. You had to upload the resources onto the studentsī area, then copy and paste onto Microsoft Teams. īAssignmentsī was treated as a separate section which was extra work as links had to be made between that and the actual lesson. We had to give lots of instructions - how long to spend on each exercise etc... We didnīt have much training and I got it wrong initially. I didnīt see the īrenew pageī button at the bottom and I put lesson after lesson onto the same page! Eventually, a kind year 10 student contacted me to say something was wrong. At that point, I consulted my son, who pointed out my error immediately. He also said he didnīt think Microsoft Teams was suitable for this purpose but I couldnīt really understand his reasoning as to why not (I did say I was a technophobe!). Some lessons were also done īin real timeī. The teacher recorded the lesson live and the students logged in to take part, but I wasnīt involved in that. 
 
Lynne  
 
 

26 Mar 2021     



douglas
United States

I use MS Teams for my teaching all the time. It took some adjustment, but I am coming to like it. I definitely require two screens when I use it, and I use the chat function to pass on what I use to put on the board.

26 Mar 2021     



ascincoquinas
Portugal

@Lynne
 
I agree with you. Though I love technology and realised that teams was time consuming and not very practical.  And your son is absolutely right, in my opinion of course, there are loads of new apps that would make our task easier. Especially for those who have too many classes. 
 
@Douglas
when you say you use two screens , I am assuming you use two monitors right?!
 
 
P.S - Forgot to mention that along with online classes the government paid some teachers to record classes and later on broadcast them on national TV. 
 
Thanks a lot to both of for sharing your experiences. 

26 Mar 2021     



douglas
United States

Actually, i usually have my Notebook and one monitor displaying the same (the meeting/students) and a second monitor where I  have my online dictionary or whatever references I need and the Teams chat, where I can send students private messages.
 

26 Mar 2021     



Jayho
Australia

 
Hi ascincoquinas
 
I use TEAMS with my vocational students (18+) and I love it! We are back in the classroom now but during lockdowns I deliver solely online via TEAMS and using the integrated Class Notebook for worksheets. (I donīt use the files in TEAMS - I use the Class Notebook instead).
 
I find it easy, but I love technology. There were teething problems in the beginning and while learning how it all works.
 
I also love it because it is part of Office365 Education and therefore students have access to OneDrive/Word/PPT/Excel online etc and documents are easily shared and edited in real time. There is no need to print anything. In the class note book, they can write their answers on the worksheets, as well as collaborate on documents in real time.
 
My class now is 100% digital and in face to face classes we continue to use the Class Notebook and Teams in class instead of paper. (Students can bring their own device or borrow one.)  I take photos of the board and post it in the notebook, and all my worksheets are in the notebook. I use the TEAMS Chat function for posting miscellaneous information and links for the class or individual students. I am very happy with all of this.
 
Our primary and secondary schools in my state use use an Australian program for online classes, and not TEAMS.
 
Cheers
 
Jayho

26 Mar 2021     



spinney
United Kingdom

As it goes, I am sitting here with Teams on right now, waiting for a student who has not shown up for the second time in a week. Perhaps it would be an idea for Microsoft to include some kind of little video game to while away the time. 
I think I like Zoom best, to be honest. The connection is always better and you have the option of breakout rooms for pairwork. Easier for playing short videos, too.
Skype is just too slow, nowadays. I tried Google Hangouts once and found it pretty easy to use. 
Teams is OK but sometimes you can be restricted with files you can share and it doesnīt always open a chat or conversation box. It all depends on the company you are teaching and their IT department. I suppose itīs different with a Team account from a public school. When Teams is good, though, it is really good.  

26 Mar 2021     



Jayho
Australia

Spinney, TEAMS has breakout rooms now and itīs really simple to use.  You can create up to 50 rooms. See here for guidance.

26 Mar 2021     



spinney
United Kingdom

Thank you, Jayho. Thatīs good news.

26 Mar 2021     



ascincoquinas
Portugal

Hi again!
 
 
 
Thereīs something that I find quite annoying about teams.... I am not sure if that can be fixed by an expert... 
 
When groups or classes are created, they are linked to our email. So every time someoneīs says something during a discussion (let say in an informal meeting)  inbox receives  all comments and then there is a fload of messages that itīs quite difficult to keep track....
I am not sure if I have been clear enough... 
 
After the first confinement i decided t sign up for a workshop at my university. God bless ZOOM. itīs fast, good sound, one can share all type of files and have private conversations as Dale mentioned. 
 
@Jayho
 
I am glad I post this discussion cause I was not aware of that!  

26 Mar 2021     



Jayho
Australia

Thatīs notifications, ascincoquinas, and you can manage those. The thing is though, you might need to do it in every channel and on every device you use.
 
See here for guidance.
 
Cheers
 
Jayho

26 Mar 2021     

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