This is a new series of blog posts for teachers looking to become materials writers. It aims to help future writers explore topics and issues in writing, encourage deeper insight into the content of published materials, and promote a principled approach to materials development.
How would you rate your knowledge and skills in the following areas? Give yourself a mark between 1-10 for each category.
1 = Huh?
10 = I’m an expert!
Subject/content knowledge – e.g knowledge of grammar, vocab, pronunciation, language skills and strategies, etc.
Pedagogical knowledge – e.g. knowledge of teaching approaches, how students learn, etc.
Cognitive knowledge – e.g. knowledge of the science of learning; memory models, encoding, storage, retrieval, etc.
Technological knowledge – e.g. knowledge of how to best use technology to enhance learning.
This review is for the PGCEi from the University of Nottingham. It’s a bit general – see links for more details.
Overview of modules
There are 3 modules on this course.
Module 1 focuses on educational aims and values in international contexts. More details in this post.
Module 2 focused on learning and teaching in international contexts. More details in this post.
Module 3 focused on inquiring into educational practice. It was research-based, we had to do a qualitative study related to our teaching context. I replicated a study by Fitch et al (2020). I summarized that study (not mine) recently for Nexus Education.
Other than that, I’ve haven’t seen much released. I’ve been reading some of the John Catt publication books. All quite new and a pretty good range, lacking in criticality at times though. Reviewed one here if interested.
Groups and chats
(If you say ‘groups and chats’ fast enough you can get a good beat going)
There are lots of Facebook groups for ELT writers. These are the main ones I’m in:
Just a few things this time. I’m out the loop at the moment, enjoying my teaching too much!
Facebook groups for writers
There are a lot of Facebook groups for ELT writers these days. If you would like to share a link to your group then please let me know (or do so yourself in the comments). I don’t know which groups are open to new members/restricted/etc.
Congrats to all ELTons winners, which you can find here.
ELT Footprint – probably the most odds-on victory since the awards started I’d imagine.
Taking nothing away from winners past/present with this comment: I think there are aspects of the ELTons nomination process that could be tightened – BC please get in touch if you’d like to hear my suggestions 🙂
I had to induct a new teacher at school once. They were fairly new to teaching and unfamiliar with our in-house product at the time (called myClass). I thought that listening to me ramble on for half an hour about how to approach the planning would be boring. So, I decided a one-page ‘try it like this’ would be better. And a tad less condescending*. Here was that one page.
Module 2 of the PGCEi (though Nottingham) is in two parts.
Part A starts with framing unit. It introduces various theories of learning such as behaviourism, cognitive constructivism, and social constructivism. Unit 2 then delves deeper into learning theories/approaches with a social focus, exploring dialogic talk, oracy, scaffolding and contingent teaching, and the spiral curriculum. ZPD is only mentioned about 8 billion times during Unit 2.
Just a quick one! Twinkl ESL are currently offering free access to users in South America in response to school closures. Miranda’s doing a great job at Twinkl and offering loads of awesome resources, many of which can be adapted for (or are even best suited to) online learning.
I found Twinkl really useful during online learning. I made various guided reading sequences on Seesaw using their resources and my learners responded well to these. I’ve since found other Twinkl resources useful for EAL classes with my Year 4 students (fronted adverbials for the win!).
The first module of the PGCEi (Nottingham) was on the aims and values of education in international contexts. The module covered some fairly broad topics like ‘the purpose of education, the nature of knowledge, the concept of a curriculum’ and so on.
The module was assessed based on process work and an essay. After you’ve done all the reading and module tasks, you write a 1000-word piece of process work outlining your own educational beliefs and values. Then you complete a 4000-word assignment in which you critique a model of schooling based on those values. (more…)