“DRIVING QUESTION” – CAN IT DRIVE YOU UP THE WALL??????

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DRIVING QUESTION

“Start your Project Based lessons with a good driving question” – this is what you will find in every resource on PBL.  Hard as it might be to create, the driving question is paramount for project based learning as it provides its purpose and sets its context.  So, ask yourself, what you will be focusing on with your students. Is it trying to find the best solution to the problem? If yes, is it abstract and academic or practical and concrete? Is it provocative and leading to discourse? Is it expected to inspire discussion or present and/or establish claim? Will it be one question for the whole class/team or a number of individual questions related to individual projects?

Researching materials on PBL and the Driving Question might prove a really daunting task. So, for a start, why don’t you check out the the ones I found particularly useful, not too lengthy and really inspiring.

  • AN ONLINE COURSE: A couple of years go I completed a PBL course with School Education Gateway. Although the course concluded, you can still use the resources HERE.
  • A WEBSITE: An absolutely fantastic website You for Youth with tonnes of information about PBL, rubrics, worksheets and tools of different kind.
  • AN ARTICLE: An article “In search of the driving question” by Andrew Miller on Edutopia investigating a number of types of driving question and what we should remember about while creating it. 
  • A CHECKLIST (an many more) which you can find on Tony Vincent’s fantastic blog.  

 

Have a look at the visual which, hopefully, will help you remember what a good driving question should be like.

 

 

 

LEARNING TO FAIL

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IF YOU’VE NEVER FAILED, YOU’VE NEVER TRIED ANYTHING NEW IN YOUR LIFE.

DO NOT GIVE UP. Help your mind to become a GROWTH MIND and build your confidence.

3 tips to boost your confidence  an excellent Self-Awareness video that might be used for listening comprehension, note taking etc.

An excellent article about the value of making mistakes.

 

 

 

 

FOR BUSY TEACHERS – YOU CAN’T MISS IT!!!!

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Do you want to start your lesson with something different? Something that everybody is talking about? Something that everybody should know? Do you need to find information quickly?

REFDESK.COM REFDESK.COM might be very useful . It can be accessed via computer or smartphone. It gives you:

Site of the day – for example Earth Cam. I’ve just seen what’s going on in Bangkok. Live! Good for DESCRIBING PICTURES.

Fact of the day – I’ve just learnt that many historians believe football (European version) originated in China around 1000 B.C. Good for DISCUSSION about – football, China, other inventions, you name it.

Thought of the day – “Better to be occasionally cheated than perpetually suspicious.” – B.C. Forbes, hmmm, I don’t know, I guess so. But I’m not going to tell my students!

This day in history – “The first American attack on Japanese soil during WWII, the Battle of Iwo Jima(…)”. No, I’m not choosing that. The page gives me other option for example BBC. So, I’m choosing 25.02 – well, well – 1982: Parents can stop school beatings: The European Court of Human Rights rules corporal punishment in Britain’s schools is a violation of the Human Rights Convention. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/onthisday/hi/dates/stories/february/25/default.stm) Good for COMPARING and CONTRASTING different school systems, CHATTING about school days; USED TO  etc.

In the newsDISCUSSING CURRENT EVENTS

Article of the day – homework: READING COMPREHENSION; WRITING A SUMMARY

Today’s birthday – good for WRITING A BIOGRAPHY; PRESENTATIONS

Today’s pictures – One of my favourite –  stunning images, shocking images, informative images, street photography, political images, etc. Good for SHORT TALKS or DESCRIBE THE PICTURE activities.

Word of the day – Love it! Every day – a new word. Today – a stalking-horse.

Dictionaries of different sorts (visual, talking, technical), translators and many, many other things which can be used easily and fast.

This website is a real gem for busy teachers. A real time saver!!!! And excellent for LEARNING ON THE GO!!!!  

25 JANUARY – RABBIE BURN’S NIGHT

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ð You have to check this out!!!!! Robert Burns INTERACTIVE –  good for listening and not only http://www.scotland.org/burns-night/interactive/

ð MY LOVE IS LIKE A RED, RED ROSE  and many more, all in audio and video http://www.robertburns.plus.com/voicemyluv.htm

ð http://www.bbc.co.uk/arts/robertburns/burns_night_running_order.shtml – a collection of wonderful resources – articles about Burns, video clips, Brurns’ poetry etc.

ð The Address to A Haggis a video clip http://www.robertburns.plus.com/voicemyluv.htm

ð ROBBIE BURNS  on ESOLcourses – lots of online activities for different levels – pre-intermediate http://www.esolcourses.com/content/lifeintheuk/scotland/burns-night/lesson-activities.html  and intermediate http://esolcourses.blogspot.com/2010/01/january-25-burns-night-english-lesson.html

PLUS

ð Masses of materials for interactive white board on http://www.prometheanplanet.com/en-gb/Search/resources/language/english/?Keywords=Robert+Burns&SortField=relevance&ViewType=ListView

ð A new documentary presented by David Hayman will exclusively unveil what Scotland’s most famous poet, Robert Burns, really looked like. In Search of Robert Burns is set to air on STV on January 22 at 8pm.  http://entertainment.stv.tv/tv/208687-stv-goes-in-search-of-robert-burns-to-reveal-the-face-of-scottish-poet/

NB: all the pictures come from my private collection, you can use them freely

AUTHENTIC MATERIALS

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British Red Cross shares a series of short and simple video clips on EVERYDAY FIRST AID giving advice how to cope in case of asthma attack, stroke, choking etc. . Excellent idea for listening activities introducing learners to a range of structures which might then be applied in real life LEARN ENGLISH  and USE IT!!!! Learn Everyday First Aid at http://www.redcross.org.uk/What-we-do/First-aid/Everyday-First-Aid

Writing a film review using authentic materials

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Why don’t you use some authentic material to teach your students how to write short film reviews –  http://www.rottentomatoes.com/. Two worksheets attached. Plus Elsflow has shared a nice lesson on how to write film reviews http://www.eslflow.com/Vocabulary_for_reviewing_films_and_movies.pdf

Worksheet 1 film reviews

Worksheet 2 film reviews