Blogs

Clearly the skills our students are aquiring go far beyond the classroom. It was a good reminder of why I volunteer and the impact adult basic education has on the lives of the learners.
ESL class
Macro's passionate drive to learn English seemed to radiate out of him, affecting those around him.
French food
On Sunday I returned from an amazing European vacation traveling in France and Italy. While nearly everyone we encountered was extremely patient and kind as I struggled to express myself through pantomiming and my hastily assembled handful of French or Italian phrases, I was reminded of my students learning English.
Teachers at MLC Learning Center - Arlington Hills are using an English-learning music video from YouTube to teach students the "Washing Machine Song". Using music to teach language is a tried-and-true method for improving pronunciation, rhythm, vocabulary, etc., but using the animated video adds to the teaching potential by appealing to the visual learning style and adding humor!
Daniel Pink discusses the science of motivation with research that demonstrates clearly and unequivocally that not only do extrinsic rewards (like cash) not improve performance on most tasks, they actually make performance worse. Yes, worse.
World map
Today we did a writing activity that incorporated new vocabulary words as well as geography.
It seems learners move up to the next level just as I’ve gotten to know them. Obviously this is a great problem to have and gives me a sense of accomplishment... but nevertheless...
Superpages.com has a free online course for adult learners (developed by Idearc Media and ProLiteracy Worldwide) that teaches the skills needed to navigate and make use of an informational website. Although the lessons are specific to Superpages, the skills are easily transferable to other sites.
Dairy protein
Calcium was our class topic today. Students guessed how many bones were in Bob the model skeleton, who had the same number as a person. Guesses ranged from 10 to 360 bones as students debated what qualified as a bone.
These little tools have been around for quite a while. They're free and easy to use.

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