When I was invited to be part of the Google for Education Innovation Academy, this event became a turning point to be an empowered educator in 2013. As I started to participate in local and international edtech conferences, I decided to take a step forward by getting out of my comfort zone. Due to my increasing #PLN (Personal Learning Network) through Twitter, Facebook, Skype, WhatsApp, G+ and Instagram, I found out that the key ingredients to be an effective 21st century educator are passion, respect, inspiration, empathy and most importantly action.
Educators all over the world use different tools to provide English Language Learners (ELLs) with an opportunity to practice English in authentic conversations. In order to empower all students to deepen their language acquisition, they have to find real audiences in order to practice English for students who are learning English as a second language. As educators we must find several ways so that our students can have true conversations with native speakers in a meaningful and positive educational environment.
The most important thing to remember in an ELL environment is that students need to be speaking English as much as possible. The more they practice, the better they will speak. The better they speak, the more confidence they will gain. And this cycle will continue to build fluency. So in order to get students to talk they need to practice English as much as they can in a wide range of ways.
I feel lucky since I have had great opportunities to connect and collaborate with classes on a multitude of projects and global interactions, from Skype and Google Hangout exchanges, to creating websites, to presenting face-to-face or asynchronously at local, regional, national and international conferences. Therefore, I strongly recommend you attend these conferences and/or online resources to find other classes willing to connect and collaborate with your classes.
- PenPal Schools: connects students everywhere to practice skills and explore the world. This is a perfect place to connect and collaborate with in over 170 countries. You can even find projects in Spanish.