domenica 26 marzo 2017

Google Suite

Logo 2013 Google
Last Saturday I could follow some webinars about  Google and its main apps. Thanks to  SimpleK12 I have become familiar with many tips and learnt from the others, educators who share on line what they have done and do by using  Google Drive and  Google Classroom. On 25th March we followed a special day about  Google- all the sessions were  free. It was great, so many teachers were online and got engaged!

In my school we have not used  Google Classroom yet but  I have become familiar with  Google apps and I must confess that  I like them. We might use  Google Classroom, and honestly I would like to do it as it is really helpful with students. Working in the cloud and having all the materials you use online can help you as a teacher.

I have collected some documents online in my Tackk which I am sharing here. For ELT materials and ideas   Google Slides and Google Docs can be great tools.  I have learnt how to write my first ebook and I have used  Google Slides to create my ebook as a pdf. Later I used it for uploading the text online and create my flipbook on some platforms where I published  my ebooks without paying.
Using Google Docs as a group activity can be a good example of a collaborative task and I like the idea of having my activities online which can be shared and people can write their comments on what I have done.

I will share this collection in a presentation which I am going to make and I hope that I will help other teachers love  Google in education.

Link online:

venerdì 17 febbraio 2017

Vizia and the Flipped Classroom

Vizia  is a very userfriendly tool which you can use for creating video quizzes.

 It is important to use videos in class but with Vizia you can create interesting video-based comprehensions,  give homework to your students and in ELT  it is the perfect tool for comprehension. It is the perfect tool also for assessment in different subjects. You can have quizzes and open questions. Once you have chosen your video you can  edit it and then  share the link with the task or embed it.
It is a free tool and you can use it for  flipped classrooms too.You just need an account and then you can start.
Here is the tutorial which I found online:

This is the tutorial in Italian  for Italian learners and teachers:

Last year I had already mentioned the tool  in a post  which I had written :

Here is a video which I have used for presenting the issue of  Migration to Australia: the video is from the Youtube and it can be embedded: I also used the link for my padlet presentation where the topic was Australia.

You can create  open questions  and then check them - the tool can be also useful for testing , you just need to rely on a good internet connection and an ICT lab or tablets.

The second  video  is about a famous interview - the idea is to  work on the news  while students watch  real videos with interviews with famous people . Internet can really  change our way of working.


Vizia can also be useful  for creating  CLIL lessons and any other document based on video when we want to make  lessons based on different school subjects  and in projects.

 We hope it will remain free.

domenica 22 gennaio 2017

CPD Interesting events and conferences online

Saturday 21st January   2017

Classroom  2.0 Live   Webinar about   free  opportunities for PLN

I could see a great webinar presented by  Peggy George who talked about  her great  sources dealing  with  PLN together with another educator : lots of interesting conferences and  events which I am going to check later.


I hope you will all share the weblinks she provided in the webinar as we are  teachers who need to learn and continue  learning thanks to a network of educators working online and sharing their best tips for free.

Click here to open this binder in a new window.

More ideas about what PLN means to me are my list of educators on Twitter who I am following.

Here you can find an interesting LIVEBINDER  with lots of  links and information which deal with  Education and  Twitter:

Click here to open this binder in a new window.

There is something new online, you just need to be connected and be online!

domenica 8 gennaio 2017

Classroom 20 Live: free webinars for Teachers

Yesterday it was an important anniversary for my  favourite Social Network   CLASSROOM 20 :   they celebrated its 8th Anniversary.

The presenters had some interesting speakers who reminded us that since they first  began their online adventure  in 2009  many changes in education and the use of technology have occurred.

I have become a regular participant in the weekly webinars which they present  live and which are later posted online. The website will present all the main links and websites which were presented or shared.
I have learnt how to use most of the  Tools which are used to share documents and make presentations: Prezi, Google Slides and Docs, Tackk, Padlet and how to use some important   Social Networks like  Pinterest and Twitter.

If you are interested in CPD and you would like to learn more about how technology is changing our learning  environment you should watch the videos or partecipate live.  The meetings are on Saturday- in Italy it is 6.00 p.m. while the presenters are in the USA and  show  their activities and share  good tips - time in the  USA can be 9.00 a.m. Usually we spend  one hour online and we can learn about the best experiences. If you are interested you can also ask for a certificate of attendance which will be sent to you after you have filled in a  Google Form.

I have collected some information which  was shared by  Peggy George - one of the founders of the social network and an active coordinator-   You can find  more in my ackk:

sabato 31 dicembre 2016

New year 2017

Ending the old Year and Beginning  a New one 

Yesterday night I was online and I was watching the fabulous webinar presented by  Shelly Terrell: I am a regular viewer of her Friday webinars and I would suggest watching them as they are uploaded on Youtube. She made a great presentation and provided a lot of ideas for the coming new year and our teaching activities.

We have reached the end of the old Year and in a few hours, we will be starting a new one.
As educators, we are required to work on our goals and on the goals of our learners. The presentation which she made was a good one: reminding us that the learners need to be supported and helped to develop their learning.
Here is the slide which she shared with us: plenty of tips which will help me in the new year.

Goal Setting with Learners from Shelly Sanchez Terrell

Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family. (Kofi Annan) 
Read more at:

Knowledge is power. Information is liberating. Education is the premise of progress, in every society, in every family. Kofi Annan
Read more at:

When I think about the old year I must admit that I am proud of myself as I have strongly believed in what I was doing and in spite of the many difficulties  I have tried to be a supportive teacher. I have faced difficulties due to the social conditions of many teenagers I have taught and who are not willing to learn, which is a pity.

I have now moved to a new school and I am working on my self-development and on the students' language skills. I have begun a new life and in spite of the low levels of some of my students I am trying to be a teacher who cares.

Working in today's schools is an adventure: every year we meet new students and we need to care as each student is different from the others. Sometimes it is hard and when you finish your day at school you need to relax as we teach in old schools-  we do need new learning environments which can support us while working on projects and more interesting activities.
The Internet can help us but we need to rely on the students' smartphones sometimes, the connection can be very poor at school.

Thinking about  a different Way of Working

Today we can rely on new technologies for enhancing learning and language teaching: therefore I  will  try to work on new approaches and work on the  Flipped Classroom  Model.

I will guide my students to work from home and watch some videos or read some documents and we will later discuss the issue in class.

Professional Development on Line in January

As a teacher of English I will also do some  CPD  activities online like  EVO 2017  starting in  January:

Last year it was an engaging experience for me as I could rely on the support of the best tutors who worked online and for free.

I will enroll in the next days- I will work on the listening skills while teaching  English and on new technologies. I am happy I did four courses last year as some are not available this year.

I wish every Italian teacher could do one of the courses in  EVO (Electronic Village Online) as some of the best educators are sharing their ideas and providing support and feedback.

Happy New Year!!

domenica 11 dicembre 2016

Integrating Newly Arrived Migrant Students in Schools Week 1-2

The third  MOOC bout educators and  newly arrived students began in November on  28th  November and it is going to end by 18th December.
As usual, it has been an interesting MOOC with lots of ideas and interesting  resources which have been shared by the tutors.
This MOOC was a sort of follow-up as we had already done the previous ones but it was also interesting as we were asked to think about what we would do in order to face the newly arrived students in our schools.
It was more about the refugees and how to deal with them at school.  Hopefully,. I have not had to face this problem with my students in class but I know that in some areas of Italy  schools have children and young students who have just arrived and need to forget their past life and the atrocities they left behind.  Most of  my students who are not Italian  were born abroad but they  have been studying in Italy for some years.  I think that with refugees schools need to act and do their best but a good team of  educators and  also financial help is needed.  Living in a land where you do not speak the language is  a stressful situation, sometimes  other  people are not ready to help you. In addition, you want to forget and need to start a new life. Families and children need to enter the new society but it is hard.
I have devised a short  Action Plan  as a final task- I am asked to  present it and to share it and some peers will have to provide feedback.  I will also have to provide feedback to two more teachers in the Mooc.

Here is my learning diary with the final task:

The resources which we were given   underlined the importance of welcoming the new students and presented  the activities which can help  them socialize.  P.E. activities and  language input were important to make the  young learners start a new living.

I would like to underline that although we have  a lot of economic problems in our region- EMILIA-ROMAGNA  we have been  working with a lot of immigrants  and there was  special conference in December.
Here is the link to the materials which have been shared by educators:

Twitter has provided interesting documents and more  ideas about the best ways we can face  our students and their needs:

It is important to remember that every child ,  every teenager, every man  has a right to education. We do need to support them and  think about how we can enhance their living and studying in the new land. 

domenica 20 novembre 2016

Tools and free materials for educators

The web is now presenting us   plenty of  tools and resources which we can use for free. While working on line I came across these useful web links  which I am sharing with you.

I have also discovered a new tool which helps me be connected online in video conferencing with a maximum number of people and I don't need to be registered.
Here is the list I have prepared for this post: you will find information, guides and a lot of free materials which you can use in your lessons and with your students.    

Free books, courses and materials online:

Unesco Free Resources

Free digital story-telling tools

Free tools

Web tools for  Teachers

Free guides to be downloaded                A free tool to convert documents 

Top Ten Learning  Tools for  2016   : source

Top 200 Tools for Learning 2016 from Jane Hart

A free  Video  Chat  &  Conference  Tool :
In order to be able to connect with the other people in the room you need to have  Chrome or Mozilla  browsers. It is very easy to use. Just see the tutorial:

Elt and Technology : useful tips and ideas shared by Nik  Peachey  thanks to  Slideshare: