As you can tell from reading this blog, I am a technology nut. I am especially interested in exploring how technology can be used for teaching.
I had this crazy idea. Could I teach ESL to the world? Forget about thirty students in a class. I want to teach the world! Can I do this?
I’ve been using Skype, a program that allows anyone to talk with each other free of charge. I placed some free ads on Craigslist. I teach students, free of charge, from China and Colombia using this program. We talk, review vocabulary, correct pronunciation,write, and do the other things that I would do in a physical classroom.
It amazes me that one can easily communicate that easy throughout the world. Well, most of it. Skype requires a good Internet connection.
One of the beauties of Skype, or technology in general, is it breaks down barriers; it crosses borders. For example, most of the sites I suggest to my Chinese students are blocked by the government. They can’t access them.
However, I just copy these sites to a Word document or make a PDF. I then transfer the information from the “forbidden” site to them through Skype or email. Technology truly makes classrooms without walls.
I’ll talk about other technologies, blogs, wikis, virtual desktops, etc. in future posts.
Teach the world English as a Second Language? It really isn’t that hard.