In an increasingly digital world, using technology and interactive tools in the classroom is more important than ever. As a foreign language teacher for teenagers, I am constantly looking for new tools to help make learning more fun for my students. During the first few days as a program participant with the Butterfly Effect in Nea Makri, Greece, I’ve been fortunate enough to collect a handful of helpful new resources to use in my classroom.
On day three of training, we listened to participants share information about how they’ve used digital resources in their classroom. These tools can be used by either the teacher to create an engaging activity or presentation for students, or by students to create a fun learning environment. Some of the tools that seem the most useful to my English as a Foreign Language classroom are Powtoon and Chatterpix. These sites allow students to digitally create stories, videos, and graphics in a lesson. I am excited to use these tools in my classroom next year to reinforce new vocabulary or grammar. The tools will be helpful in getting the kids excited about the given task without noticing that they’re learning! My students love to use their phones, and by giving them a platform that allows them to use their creativity on a mobile device will ensure that they are engaged. I know I’ll also use non-tech tools like Picture Cube to allow my students to use their creativity to draw and write.
During the first three days of training, we’ve focused on getting to know our fellow participants from other countries and learning more about the methods they use to work with students. Outside of workshops and sessions, I’ve loved interacting with participants and learning about the education system in their countries. While eating or enjoying down time between sessions, I’ve spoken with Greek and Romanian participants about what their typical classroom would look like and how students are separated by grade and academic level.
I’m so grateful for my time here in Greece and cannot wait to continue learning from my fellow participants.
Testimony of Olivia Catherine.