This post describes one of the real historical mysteries discussed in our latest book, History’s Mysteries. This book includes 40 unsolved mysteries from history. Students read a text, discuss and analyze, do research on their own, and then complete a serious of projects designed to help them figure out what they think happened and why. In the process, they use critical thinking skills, academic research and writing skills, and get caught up in a fascinating story of intrigue! Read about the Osage Indian Murders and download a free unit teaching the Osage Indian Murders to try in your classroom! The
The History’s Mysteries project is about more than just giving students topics to write about. It also teaches students the critical thinking tools they need to evaluate information and find good sources. That includes distinguishing between fact and opinion, recognizing bias, finding authoritative sources and citing those sources correctly. Critical thinking skills also includes avoiding logical fallacies in texts, as well as students’ own writing. Our worksheet (fill out the form below to download it) identifies some of the most common logical fallacies. The worksheet discusses the fallacies, why they are illogical, and gives students practice identifying fallacies in
My most popular posts of 2021 feature Minecraft, Excel, drama, self-care, and classroom community. Sounds appropriate for 2021!
There’s an ongoing debate about whether direct instruction or discovery learning works best in ELT. Direct learning also known as explicit learning is when you give students new information explicitly. For example, you tell them that we form the plural in English by adding -s to the end of words. By contrast, discovery learning is letting students figure out the rules by themselves. I doubt this debate will ever be settled. In fact, it seems likely that in fact both methods work in different contexts with different kinds of information. This post has been sitting in my drafts folder
I know, I know. We’ve all done it: pressed play on a movie so we don’t have to do a real lesson! But using videos in class can be very productive for teaching spoken language! But students actually can get a lot out of videos and films. When students are watching a video, they’re listening and also absorbing body language and also learning about English in context, which is important for teaching pragmatics! Videos are full of visual cues that students can pick up on. Movies often have a plot or story to discuss and some kind of moral
Thanksgiving Activities for ESL students are always a fun way to teach American culture. But Thanksgiving lessons also raise timeless themes such as gratitude, types of food, and how we celebrate holidays in general. Plus, it’s nice to pop in A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving sometimes and have some fun! So here’s some links to some of my most popular Thanksgiving activities and lesson plans. Activities for ESL students about Thanksgiving A Charlie Brown Thanksgiving lesson plan is my best-selling lesson plan and my go-to thanksgiving activity for ESL students in my own classes. I’ve tried to include everything you can get
This post comes from a chapter in a book by Penny Ur or Tessa Woodward about asking questions in the classroom. It’s been a while since I read it, but the essence was that too often when teachers pose a question, they are asking students to read their minds. That is, we ask a question to students that may have many answers. But we already know the answer that we want to hear. We will refuse to accept any answer besides the one in our head. And there’s no way for students to know that “right” answer, since other
Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. And it’s a great holiday to share with students. Some say it’s too scary or macabre to do Halloween activities in English class. But you can always find an aspect of the holiday that isn’t too gruesome. You can talk about trick-or-treating, costumes, or creepy animals such as spiders, bats, or owls. You can tell or write silly ghost stories, instead of scary ones. Of course, you can also go for the scary—I miss my 6th and 7th graders who were all about the gore!). So here are some of our best-selling
I love Halloween as a teacher and also in general! So I’m really excited to share some of my go-to scary stories for English students. I love scary stories and students love them too! They’re especially fun to share around Halloween as a way to build atmosphere. I find the best scary stories for the English classroom need to be short and written fairly simply. But they should keep some of the Halloween-specific words, too. They also can’t be too gory or terrifying. The scary part should really come from the suspense. So they need to have a twist.
We get so much from our colleagues! Sometimes we need to support our teacher colleagues and tell them what they admire in them. Here’s my list of what I’ve learned from fellow teachers over the years. How about you?
$5.00 incl tax
$5.00 incl tax
$5.00 incl tax
$5.00 incl tax