Adding supplementary materials - PAE / ELP

Dear all,
Now that the term is nearly over, and while ideas are still fresh in your mind, why not share some of the supplementary materials that you have used with Language Leader? You can do this by adding to the Google docs that can be found on the portal here: Just click on the link of the book you would like to contribute to, and a Google doc will open. You can then add your own materials, comments, links to videos or reference to other materials.
Your contributions will help build a bank of supplementary materials that will link with each of the units in Language Leader Pre-Int, Int or UI. This will be extremely useful when we start term 1 next year, as we will be using Language Leader.
If you have used another book this term (e.g. Global Int or LLeader Advanced), and you would like to contribute, please contact me directly and I'll create a new document.
If you have any questions, do not hesitate to ask!

Week 7 listening materials

Please find all the lecture materials for this week. I made a mistake with my email - the listening is actually taken from Academic Listening Encounters - Life in Society. I will post the audio later today. Week 7 Our social selves - flyer Week 7 Our Social Selves - in lecture worksheet Week 7 Our Social selves - pre lecture listening Week 7 Our Social Selves - pre lecture reading  

PAE Reading and Writing Feedback Session

Thank you to all of you who have completed the feedback form about the reading and writing task I sent last week. In case you have not done it yet, you can answer this very short questionnaire here:
If you prefer to share your ideas about this task with other teachers, there will be a sharing session on the following date:
Friday 17th May 1:30 - 2-ish pm
Location: Resources Room.
If you can't come but would like to share your ideas with us, don't hesitate to talk to either Sue or Manuel.

Submission deadlines for PAE reading into writing task

Please find attached the schedule for submissions and feedback for the week 4 task. This has also been sent by email and is on the drop down tab under PAE. Reading into Writing submission dates May 2016

Say hi to the summer school students!

Before the start of the summer school, we're going to be giving students access to a special website called Online Academic English, a place where students can access some practice materials, ask questions in a forum and introduce themselves. To help them introduce themselves, we've created a virtual noticeboard on which tutors and students can upload a picture of themselves and write a short profile. At the moment there are only tutors on the board as we haven't sent out details of the site to students, but will be doing so in the next few days. If you are teaching on the summer school, it would be great if you could add your picture and write a few sentences about yourself. All you need to do is go to the link below, double click on anywhere that isn't a profile and you'll be given the option to write something and add a picture. When you finish this will then be added to the page.  

Schedule posts with Google Classroom

Tired of posting reminders to students on Fridays that you know they'll have forgotten about by Monday morning? Google Classroom's new schedule feature allows you to set everything from messages to assignments to go out at whatever time you want them to. Click here for a simple how-to guide.

Week 3 higher level lecture materials

Dear all, Please find below:
  • flyer
  • prelecture tasksheet
  • inlecture tasksheet
The materials this week focus on listening -a TED talk from a Nigerian writer, which is connected with Deborah's lecture. It's 20 min video which is great for notetaking. I've divided it into 4 sections with questions. The handout is 2 sides, and the teacher's notes and answers are on page 3. Even if you don't do the prelecture tasksheet, please give out the inlecture tasksheet (2 sides) to help students make notes. Some students did not have one last week and were disappointed, and I do not take spare copies with me. Thanks, Sian Week 3 Educational Equity and Diversity - flyer Week 3 Education - in lecture worksheet Week 3 Education - pre lecture worksheet

Term 3 Class Representatives: APEC/ME/PAE/Pre-Sic

Here is the sign up sheet for class reps for the meetings next week: Tuesday 26th 3.30 - 4.30  B04  -PAE/Pre-Sic Thursday 28th  3.30 - 4.30  B04  AEPC/ME Term 3 Class Representatives This information and a link has also bee sent to you by email

Higher level lecture programme term 3

Please find the lecture programme for this term. As you can see, some of the later ones are not confirmed yet, so I will update when they are. Lecture Programme term 3 teacher version I will post the flyer and lecture materials on a Monday. The quiz will be posted late Wednesday afternoon. Sian

SAC sign-up for class visits - Friday 22nd April

  Deborah is organising class visits for the Self Access Centre in C10 this Friday 22nd April. If you would like to go with your students, please add your details here:

Conduct quick polls with Google Classroom

A great feature that's been added to Google Classroom over the holiday is the ability to conduct polls via Google Classroom. These are effectively multiple choice questions, and can be used for anything from getting student opinions to practising summaries of listeningf. Go to this page on the tech website to find out how.

Teaching 'with an attitude': critical discourse analysis in EFL

Recommended by Anastasios Asimakopoulos and - in his words - 'not as heavy as it appears', an excellent article exploring the role between language and social influence and what that might mean for our teaching. You can access it here, though you'll need to be signed into your Sheffield account to make sure you can open and view it.

Easter Training Day

Following the success of the Christmas vacation training day, we're going to repeat the formula on the final Friday of the Easter vacation and hopefully send you buzzing away into Term 3 with lots of coffee new ideas to try. If you're not still on holiday and are interested in attending, or even giving, some of the sessions, please click here and fill out the quick form. For the purposes of timetabling WAS etc, it would be really helpful if you could reply by the end of this week.

Use Text Analysis Tools to enhance your lessons

There are many excellent websites out there now that use corpora to help you and your students analyse texts and words and learn more about their usage, form and meaning. We have written a user-friendly guide to the four most helpful sites for doing this and you can read it here.

Comparison of the effectiveness of dictionaries versus online corpora

This article by Charles Mueller and Natalie Jacobson looks at whether students benefit more from using dictionaries or online corpora. Interesting read with some interesting conclusions, you can download it from here.

Grammar Flip

Grammar Flip is a website to help you 'flip' the classroom, by that we mean providing engaging and interactive content outside the classroom so you can focus more on helping the students inside. This website focusses specifically on grammar.

Create a YouTube playlist for your class

A simple and easy way to share video material with students in your class is by creating a YouTube playlist. This playlist can be shared by email or embedded in a VLE, and can be updated as and when you wish. Click here for our easy-to-follow guide.

Create lessons from TED

TED is a very popular site with teachers (and with good reason). But did you know there is a special site where you can create interactive lessons based on TED videos? It's called TED ED and we've written a lovely guide for you to read here.

Why not have a good read?

If you scroll down the page, you'll notice we've added a Good Reads section with a couple of shortish articles on EFL/EAP theory or practice. Some of these are blog posts, others more academic articles, we'll try to find decent stuff from around the web that you might have missed and post a couple of articles each week. If you want to recommend an article then just let us (David, Nick, Erin or Jo) know and we'll add it to our weekly posts. Also, remember to add comments to the post if there's any point you want to make about the article. To do that, click on the title of the article and then add your comment in the text box.

Vocabulary Size and Text Coverage by Paul Nation and Robert Waring

A more academic read this one looking at the issue of how many words students need to know to be able to understand a text (or at least a part of it). Huge implications for activities such as guessing in context. Not a long read so well worth a skim through, click here to read and remember to make a comment if you have something to say!

Misapplied Linguistics by Leo Selivan

An excellent blog post by Leo Selivan, an EFL teacher working in Israel. Some fascinating insights into the mismatch of theory and practice in our discipline as well as some surprising research findings about lexical sets. Click here to read the article and remember to add a comment to this post if anything interested you.

Interactive Afternoon

On Wednesday, 24th February there will be three tech TD sessions aimed at showing and trying out some easy-to-use tools that can make your classroom more interactive. David and Nick will be leading the sessions, but Anastasios will also be there to talk about how he's used some of these tools in AEPC classes. Tea and coffee, maybe even biscuits, will be provided at the midpoint, so to help us gauge numbers, please add your details on this form. As ever, this is not a firm commitment on your part, just something to give us a general idea.

Great video lessons with Zaption

Zaption is a wonderful web tool for creating lively video lessons, you can take web video from YouTube and elsewhere and easily add your own questions. We've written an extensive guide to help you get started, click here to read.

Oxford Words Blog

If you're looking for a site that provides students with quirky, interesting facts about English, try the Oxford Words Blog It's updated regularly and often reflects what's in the news. Recent posts have included words that come from people's surnames (e.g. Pilates) and a quiz on who's V whose. Good to share on Google Classroom or use as the basis for a lesson.

Flip your classroom with VideoAnt

VideoAnt is a web tool where you can take a YouTube video and then make as many questions or annotations on it as you like (bit like margin comments in a book). You can then share your creation with others so they can respond to your annotations or make their own. We've written up a guide to help you use it more effectively with your students and you can read it here.

Book a tech session

You can now book a member of the TEL team (Nick or David) to come into your class on a Tuesday or Thursday morning to deliver a tech session on a topic of your choosing. We've set up a page on the portal here where you can access the booking page, please read the info and then just follow the instructions carefully to book an appropriate slot for your class. You can also access this from the left-hand side of this page under Useful Links from the button that says Book a Tech Session.

High Level Lecture - Week 4: Slang by Dr Phil Smith

The high level lecture for this week is English Slang by our dear Dr Phil Smith. You can find the flyer here.
There are also class materials and teachers' notes for this lecture.

Use Quizlet to develop student vocabulary

Quizlet is a wonderful website/mobile app for developing students vocabulary through word lists, flashcards and games. We've written up an extensive guide for it that you can find here.

Reminder about using and booking Chromebooks

The Chromebooks are really popular and it's very common for all of them to be booked out at the same time by teachers to use in class. However, there's been a few occasions when teachers didn't have their full allocation to take to class because other teachers had taken individual chromebooks to use themselves. If you need to book out a laptop for individual work, can you please speak to the tech team first to identify what device would be best for you? We do have several general laptops that can be booked out for use and we'd prefer teachers to use these rather than Chromebooks. If you feel you need to have a Chromebook for an extended period of time for work-related reasons, please come and speak to me (David Read) to decide how that can be arranged. Please do not just take a Chromebook without letting anyone know that you've got it.

Use Padlet in class

Padlet is an excellent virtual noticeboard that can be used for brainstorming, lesson review or error correction. We've created a guide for it to make it easier to use and you can find it here.

SAC sign-up for class visits

Please add your class details to the sign-up sheet for the SAC visits this term:

PAE class and teachers

The link to the Term 2 PAE class and teachers can be found under the PAE tab. You can also find it by clicking in this link. Please let us know if you spot any mistakes. Sue & Manuel

Wednesday lectures this week

Higher level lectures The higher level lecture this week is 'Plants in medicine' by Patrick Harding at the Students' Union Auditorium. This lecture is for all students except the low level classes (see below).
The lecture programme will be uploaded to the portal shortly but you can find it here. PAE teachers can also find the lecture programme in the Term 2 guidelines booklet (printouts available next to the red trays and electronic version under PAE Course Information Term 2 from the portal) The flyer for this week's lecture is here. You can also find some notes here.
Lower level lectures (PAE 11-13 + PAE 10 if listening ability is low for those students): The lecture on Wednesday is 'Pre-History to 1066' in the Oasis. You can find the low level lecture programme here.

Have your email replies open in a separate box

It's a small thing, but annoying. When you compose an email, it opens in a new box, making it easier to refer to older emails when writing it. But when you reply to an email, this doesn't happen, instead the box is on the same page and when you go back to your inbox, it saves as a draft. But this doesn't have to happen, you can open replies in a separate box. Here's how. First, click in the reply box at the bottom of the email you want to reply to. Then click on the small down arrow next to the email address you are replying to (see 1 in picture). You'll get a dropdown menu and from that menu, select pop-out reply (2 in picture). Easy, eh?   pop out reply

Lesson records from Term 2 in 2015

If anyone needs access for reference purposes to morning lesson records from Term 2 in 2015, you can access them from this Google Drive folder here. Just click on the relevant folder to find the class you need. If you want to find the records for the afternoon classes, you can access them from this page on our old portal. These links can be found permanently on our Old Lesson Records page on the site along with the lesson records from last term.

Suggestion of writing task to make students reflect on the first week

Hello, Anne Turner has kindly shared the following writing task. It is a travel blog that helps students reflect on their first week here. Feel free to use it with your classes. 1_Writing Task_travel_blog_Term2

USEPT Preparation

All AEPC students will do USEPT in March. A few from PAE may opt to join them. In addition to IELTS books used for exam prep classes, there will be 2 practice USEPT tests available to use in exam prep classes. The first is available now - click on the USEPT tab above to find it. These tasks can be used at any point during the term. AEPC Students will take the reading-into-writing component in addition to the independent writing task. AEPC students who are not doing exam prep classes can be given the practice tests for self study. There are also model answers available for the writing tasks. There are also presentations about each USEPT component available. All of these are useful and can be shared with students, but the one for reading-into-writing in particular should be given out as the task may be unfamiliar to students. There is also a folder titled "Shared_Materials". This was empty at the time of writing. If you create resources that work well, particularly for the reading-into-writing task, do please share them.

Student Representatives Sign up Sheet

Please choose one student from your class to attend a student rep meeting in Week 4. Please then add them to the Google doc attached (time and location of meetings TBC). Student Representatives  

AEPC/ME Teachers' Meeting 29/1/16 2.15 - 3.00 B04

There will be an AEPC/ME teachers' meeting on Friday 29th January from 2.15 - 3.00 in B04. Please also see the calendar for details.

PAE Teachers' Meeting 29/01/16 1.30 - 2.15 B04

There will be a PAE teachers' Meeting on Friday 29th January 1.30 - 2.15  in B04. Please also see the calendar details

Optional tech training for students this term

During this term, there won't be any specific tech training sessions for AEPC/PAE students as there was last term. This is because the mixture of old/new students and the frequent departure/arrival of students makes it difficult to provide a structured programme of training. However, all new students will get an introductory lecture this Thursday going over the basics of technology and explaining how to access all their key services (email, Google Classroom etc). Also, from around week three of the term, myself and Nick will offer several lessons during the week where we can be be booked to come into your class and deliver sessions on a range of topics that are relevant for your students. There will be a sign-up form where you can select the day/time you want us to come in and the topic you want us to deliver a session on. We'll post more information about this and put up the appointment calendar in a couple of week's time.

AEPC who/what/where & Term 2 Overview

Dear all, The list of AEPC classes running in  Term 2 and the (still tentative) Term Overview have been uploaded onto the portal and can be found under "Course Information". Best, Mateusz

Google Classrooms for the new term

As last term, we'll be using Google Classroom as the VLE on the ELTC-based courses. We've created new classrooms for PAE and invited teachers to them, and will do the same for AEPC once class numbers have been finalised. This may mean that returning students have to join a new classroom, but this is easily done by giving them the code for the new class. The benefit to teachers of our setting up  new classrooms instead of kicking you out of old ones is that you will be able to reuse any assignments or announcements you made in the previous classrooms, complete with attachments. To see how to reuse posts, see the guide here.

Anyone interested in running an online seminar this term for university students?

Over the last few years and including this term, the ELTC teachers have been providing home/distance students with regular online seminars on a range of academic skills/writing topics. Information about them are put on the language support hub for students and students can access recorded seminars from this page on the site (you can see some examples here, here, here and here). These have proved really popular with students and we would like to continue to offer these regularly to students and so I’m asking for expressions of interest from teachers to present. They normally only last 45-60 mins and you can normally adapt existing materials you’ve used in class. Full support will be given on the technical side from me, so these are a great chance to dip your toes into the world of online teaching in a comfortable environment. The first one will be taking place the the week beginning 8th February and there will be six in total, one each week. If you are interested, either contact me (David Read) directly or go to this form and add your name.

How to quickly resize documents in Windows to fill half the screen

We often have to work on two documents (e.g. two Word documents, one pdf and one Word document) at the same time and it's not always easy to resize them quickly to fill half the screen. However, in Windows there is a technique for doing this really quickly and accurately. I've made a short video showing how it's done.

UE high level lecture

The last UE higher level lecture of the first term is 'Christmas' by Dr. Patrick Harding.
You can find the flyer here and some lecture notes here
The lecture will take place at the usual time (1.45pm) in the Student's Union.

Gentle Reminders: Teaching Resources and Collection of Graded Readers

As we are fast approaching the end of term could I remind all staff to return resources to F03. A black book trolley has been placed next to the scanner so if time is limited just scan the resource to return it and pop it in the trolley. The Christmas elves will return them to shelves once teaching has finished. Also, could all teachers remind their classes to return graded readers. Tutorial day is the last opportunity to return books. Many Thanks in advance for your cooperation.