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Episode 5.5 of the ELTtime podcast from Garnet Education

Educating online: insights and advice

Today’s special episode of ELTtime addresses the global COVID-19 pandemic. The virus is causing unprecedented levels of disruption to education – schools are closed, students are unable to attend lessons in person, international students can’t travel overseas, and institutions are forced to reschedule courses and exams. As a result, now more than ever before, English language teachers around the world are finding themselves with an urgent need to become effective online educators.

In today’s episode, Garnet’s Digital Manager Matthew George talks to experienced English language Teacher/Teacher Trainer, Julietta Schoenmann. Julietta talks over the nuts and bolts of how to get going as an online teacher, and then offers a wide range of insights into how to manage online classes, how to make the most of the tools and resources at your disposal and how to maintain student motivation.

Let us know if you enjoyed the episode. Get in touch with any suggestions or questions – you can find us at @garneteducation everywhere!

This episode features:

Matthew George

Matthew George is the Digital Manager at Garnet. He spends his days overseeing the digital department creating briefs for digital materials, fine tuning instructional design documents and liaising with developers in India and the USA. He works closely with the editorial department, helping to develop content that works equally well in both the print and digital contexts.

Julietta Schoenmann

Julietta Schoenmann has worked as a teacher, trainer, materials developer and e-moderator in over thirty countries. Upon completing her Master’s in Education, she worked for two years in Bangladesh as Regional Training Advisor on a DfID-funded education project, and has since undertaken a number of other education projects across Africa and Asia. Her main areas of expertise are concerned with supporting teacher and trainer development in transitional and post-conflict educational contexts.

0:20 – Intro
1:17 – Julietta’s background in online teaching
2:20 – The Hands Up Project
3:18 – Online platforms: Zoom
5:20 – Zoom features – breakout rooms, screen sharing, polls
7:22 – Tips for using online tools for the first time
9:44 – Green screens in Zoom
10:44 – Online tools for teachers (Padlet, Flipgrid, Vialogues)
13:26 – How do teaching styles differ online?
16:33 – Disruptive home environments
18:05 – Online breakout rooms for group work
18:59 – Activity types in the virtual classroom and encouraging student autonomy
23:22 – Motivation and keeping students engaged
26:24 – Online tools can provide more variety in activities (e.g., using Google Street view)
27:29 – Encouragement and praise
27:56 – Pitfalls of online teaching: connectivity issues
29:20 – Orientation to working online and multitasking
32:18 – Boundaries and limits
33:37 –What can institutions and teachers do to ensure a positive outcome from this move online?
36:07 – Outro


Please note that the views, information, or opinions expressed during these podcasts are solely those of the individuals involved and do not necessarily represent the views or opinions of Garnet Education. Any contributors to the podcasts who are themselves employees of Garnet Education express their views and opinions in a personal capacity and not as representatives of the company.

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