#ELTchat Topic Playlist for October 2017

Sunday, October 1, 2017 20:42 | Filled in Propose a Topic

September saw the #ELTchat fires reignited with three great chats on building literacy skills, doing needs analysis, and taking a process approach to writing – all with YLs. Thanks to everyone who got involved coming back from summer!


Let’s keep the fire burning bright in October with the following four chat topics suggested by members of the #ELTchat community!



October Topics: 


Wednesday, October 4th:

“The Best Web 2.0 Tools for Writing Skills”

(proposed by Fiona Price)



Wednesday, October 11th:

“Teaching Online”

(proposed by Paulino Brener)



Wednesday, October 18th:

“Teaching 1-2-1 and Coaching”

(proposed by Carmelia Martincu)



Wednesday, October 25th:

“Gender Equity in ELT Conferences”

(proposed by Fiona Dunbar)



Topic Refinement: 

In order to help refine and enhance the focus of each one-hour live chat on the topics above, please feel free to use the comment second of this post (below) to suggest specific questions or areas within a topic that moderators help make sure is brought into to the chat!


Chuffed for Chats!

Interested in one, two, three, or all of these topics? We hope to see you on Twitter Wednesdays this October. And remember, you can join us for the *LIVE* chat each Wednesday at 19:00 BST (Time Zone Converter) OR if you can’t make it live, take part in the ‘slowburn’ ongoing discussion during the following 24-hours or so.




DJ Matthew






#ELTchat is 7 years old!

Saturday, September 16, 2017 11:38 | Filled in General Announcements

Happy Birthday to all #ELTchatters new and old friends and followers of our weekly chat on twitter.


Here are some comments and wished from facebook posts and updates. I just made a blog post of these to keep them as a great souvenir and to show to new teachers who are reluctant to join, share and talk to us.



Write your own as comments under this post!  Join us more often! 






Make sure you check out Sandy Millin’s post !!!!






Add  your comments below


#ELTchat is back – here is the playlist for September 2017

Tuesday, September 12, 2017 14:12 | Filled in Propose a Topic

#ELTchat is back!!

After a longish summer break, which, as most #ELTchatters know was not really a summer break but a chance to work even harder, as many of us do, here we are again!


Last Wednesday we had an informal get together on Twitter and some really great topics were suggested.


Since I am the first DJ of the fall season, I have the privilege of being the first to choose!!!


Isn’t that wonderful!!!! Here are my topic choices for the remaining three Wednesdays in September. I have picked some topics which are of interest to me round about this time, as I will be running a course on teaching young learners, so these topics inspired me




September 13 –  Literacy Skills for L2 Learners (YL’s & Adults) 



Have a look at one of our early #ELTchat summaries on early literacy for adults here


September 20 –  Needs Analysis with Young Learners



This is an interesting topic and one that does need to be discussed. There are a lot of questionnalires on the web and textbooks on needs analysis with adults, but what about young learners?


Bring your ideas to our chat on Wednesday!!!!



September 27 –  Process Writing with Young Learners





We have lots more topics, all of them your suggestions, for the coming months and you are invited to contribute more by filling in the form below






See you on Twitter!!! Join us and inspire us with your ideas and experience!

your Dj for September!



DJ Matthew’s #ELTchat Topics for June/July 2017

Tuesday, June 20, 2017 19:04 | Filled in Summary

For the next four weeks DJ Matthew Noble will be on the 1s and 2s “spinning” the hottest teaching topics for #ELTchat Wednesdays – topics that’ll make you wanna dance (intellectually) and groove (reflectively) with your fellow teachers in the #ELTchat disco. Of course, this DJ *does* consider requests, so please keep on keepin’ on suggesting topics on the #ELTchat topics submission form!

And with no further ado, let’s get this party started!

Wednesday, June 20th:

What beliefs & behaviors have changed THE MOST over your teaching career? [complete – see summary here]

Wednesday, June 27th:

Outside 4 walls: experiences teaching in different types of classrooms (or not classrooms at all) [complete – summary link coming soon]

Wednesday, July 5th:

Chats, Hashtags, Debates, Blog Carnivals & Beyond: Appreciating what the PLN produces, imagining what more it can do

*OR topic suggested by #ELTchatters

*OFF FOR SUMMER* See you at the next #ELTchat in the fall! 🙂 


Remember: if you miss the live one-hour chats, you can always engage in the *slowburn*, a 24-hour simmer-chat following the live event. These aren’t topics that closed down after an hour; there’s always more to share. 🙂

Sincerely, your current DJ:

DJ Matthew

(on drums, before he switched to drum machines and turntables)

Topics for June 2017, from DJ Sue #ELTCHAT

Monday, June 12, 2017 20:18 | Filled in General Announcements

Hello fellow #ELTChatters

Welcome to my final offering as DJ for the moment .

I hope to see lots of you around on twitter


Wednesday evening at 7PM BST

Just remember the #ELTchat hashtag!



The topic under discussion will be: Times are changing. Are we, teachers, changing accordingly? How?

#ELTChat topics for May/June 2017

Monday, May 29, 2017 21:23 | Filled in General Announcements

Hello fellow #ELTchatters


Take a look at a previous post to find out how we choose our topics for #ELTchat.

Please, keep suggesting topics on the #ELTchat topics submission form 


DJ Sue’s topic for #ELTchat on Wednesday 31st May 2017 :




Should we champion the teaching of literature and poetry in our classrooms?


DJ Sue















Note – Do have a look at this previous #ELTchat – summary written by Sandy Millin


Creative and effective ways of bringing literature (storybooks, novels, poetry, etc) into the EFL classroom.

This week’s topic for #ELTChat in May/ June 2017

Monday, May 15, 2017 22:44 | Filled in General Announcements

Hello #ELTchatters



If you haven’t read the announcement about how we choose topics for #ELTchat, have a look at a previous post. 

Here, you will find the topics we will cover in the chats for the next few weeks.

Please, keep suggesting topics on the #ELTchat topics submission form 


DJ Sue’s topic for #ELTchat on Wednesday 24th May 2017 :

How do we deal with diversity, inclusivity and social justice in our classrooms?


Join us on Wednesday 24th May on #Eltchat on twitter. Don’t forget the hashtag:-)


Sue teaches in the largest of the Channel Islands, between France and UK. She is a teacher trainer for Trinity College,London, and also a Business English trainer.

As an #ELTchat moderator , and a member of IATEFL BEsig’s online team, Sue enjoys making contact with like-minded professionals from all over the world




Topics for #ELTchat in April/May 2017

Tuesday, April 18, 2017 10:54 | Filled in General Announcements

Hello #ELTchatters!

If you haven’t read the announcement of some changes to how we choose topics for #ELTchat, have a look at a previous post. 


Here, I will be posting the topics we will cover in following chats.

Please, keep suggesting topics on the #ELTchat topics submission form 

May 10 #ELTchat topic:

Integrating New Students Into Existing Classes with Fresh Ideas

Rolling admission can have its benefits but can also be a challenge for the students and the teacher. What do you do to ensure better integration of new students into existing classes? Bring your fresh ideas tomorrow, May 10 at 19.00 (UK time) on Twitter and let’s #ELTchat




May 3 #ELTchat topic:


How to prepare and what to study before your first CELTA or equivalent course 




Join us if you are a


  • teacher who has some great ideas to share
  • trainer who has some advice for future trainees
  • future trainee to learn how to help yourself




April 26 #ELTchat topic:

Language Needs of Very Advanced Learners 










Advanced learners and their language needs is a topic that has not been discussed enough in #ELTchat. It is however something that is of relevance to most teachers, considering some teachers are advanced language learners themselves.



This promises to be a topic of interest to most of us! Join us tomorrow 🙂 



April 19 #ELTchat topic:

Exploring your options in ELT. 




At #IATEFL2017 conference, there was a lot of discussion about possible next steps in one’s career in ELT.  It seems this is something that most people think about a lot. In the past, we had two #ELTchats on this topic. One in 2013 and another one in 2015. It’s interesting to see what has changed, how and if people think differently about their careers.


Here’s the summary of the 2013 chat (click here) written by Sue Annan, and

here’s the summary of the 2015 chat (click here) written by Fiona Elsted



This promises to be an interesting topic so let’s chat! 

Your #ELTchat moderator for April/May















Please, keep suggesting topics on the #ELTchat topics submission form !

Encouraging Self-Directed Learning #ELTchat Summary 22/03/2017

Thursday, March 30, 2017 20:35 | Filled in Summary

This summary was contributed by Rachel Appleby and was taken from her blog here 









@fwalkerbcn@fionaljp @rapple18 @EdTechTV@GlenysHanson @Nafooh1988@TESOLacademic@faleh_muhammad @Marisa_C  [@SueAnnan in the background; missed, thanks to technology …  @angelos_bollas ]

[Image from www.thegazelle.org/issue/63/opinion/ling-2] 



This week’s topic was an area proposed by @ElleninEdmonton and @Nafooh1988




Preamble …


Marisa_C pre-empted and attempted to prevent overlap and repetition with a heads-up on

three past chats on the topic (although I’m not sure we succeeded!), posted here


  1. Tips for delegating responsibilities to students – training them for autonomy Transcript (Summary not available)
  1. Learner Autonomy: Is it important? If is it, why is it and how can we promote it (should we?)  Summary 6 February 2013      Two definitions from this post were useful: NikkiFortova  “The way I understand it is the learner’s ability to take responsibility for their learning inside and outside the class”, and elawasell  “Learner Autonomy – being able to study on your own, have a say about the direction of learning, responsibility for own learning”. It was later agreed that age and culture were important implications.
    More in the Summary by Bob Knowles @BobK99
  1. Ways to develop learner autonomy: tips for learning outside class time, Summary: http://eltchat.org/wordpress/summary/ways-to-develop-learner-autonomy-tips-for-learning-outside-class-time-eltchat-summary-26012011/ 26 January 2011  

    Useful starting points from this summary [edited]:

    Main goals:

• Make your students independent of the teacher

• Help the learner to become his/her own mentor
• provide students with learning tools
How autonomy starts in classroom:
• Give them choice
• Show them ways of learning
• Use their interesta
• Talk about it in classroom

More in this Summary by Vladimira Michalkova


Marisa_C also mentioned up-front recent trends and echoes of this topic in Sugata Mitra’s IATEFL 2014 talk.


Here is the summary of a chat on SOLE, and a discussion after Dr Mitra’s presentation:


The Future of Learning – Reflections on Sugata Mitra’s Plenary at IATEFL



I’m not sure we all had time to read the above summaries, but the evening’s tweet-exchange on Encouraging Self-Directed Learning can be summarised and defined under two key areas: issues to be aware of, and ideas to promote Self-directed Learning.




Issues re. Self-directed learning


  • do they want it? (fionaljp); are they motivated?
  • the relationship between motivation and autonomy (Nafooh1988)
  • do sts value the importance of autonomous learning? (rapple18) – yes.. when they perceive learner autonomy as relate to their life outside the class (Nafooh1988)
  • ways of training learners to do what happens naturally out there on the web (Marisa_C)
  • if they are learning outside the classroom, what are they [we?] doing with the data, and who can we make sense of it (Marisa_C)
  • it’s a gradual process: increasing awareness, changing attitudes, changing roles (Scharle & Szabo http://www.cambridge.org/us/cambridgeenglish/catalog/teacher-training-development-and-research/learner-autonomy/learner-autonomy-a-guide-developing-learner-responsibility-paperback) (Nafooh1988)
  • … and never ends (TESOLacademic)
  • Ts need to create the right environment (fionaljp)
  • sts must be aware of own strengths and be able to make the right choices, hence learner training (Marisa_C)
  • metacognitive awareness: Qs become deeper – e.g. how do I learn best? (Marisa_C)



Ideas to encourage and promote Self-directed learning




begin early, – i.e. get them used to the idea

involving learners in making decisions about their learning


– weaning them off being spoonfed

– the less I chose & explained subjects the more students did


– Guide them, show them where they can find suitably challenging self-directed learning material

– collaboration and sharing ideas is key to encourage and maintain autonomy

– give [sts] the tools, encouragement but at some point it’s a choice

– get students to write summaries of texts they have chosen [see summary writing ling below]; then share


– a new approach to teaching – called “keep it Mysterious and they will WANT to learn it”
– creating a social network of sorts that they will WANT to belong
– getting them to do stuff in English which they’d otherwise do in L1 – [e.g. online / social media if studying in their own country, or having to go to the corner shop if studying in an English-speaking environment / ESOL]
– Vocab challenge can begin with sets of Quizlet cardsready made; later Ss make their own

– Reading challenge – can begin from a list, but later Ss choose own texts

– (via @ShellTerrell) different colour cards for T to monitor degree of autonomy – great for YLs


– autonomy + edtech is more about language use on social media then apps to practice
– huge potential of gamification (not to be confused with Game-base learning EdTechTV)

– asking ss for evidence of autonomous learning, e.g. a learner diary is one way of encouraging ss


– not only about materials, but now we approach them.
– a case of providing a model and a gradual process for sts to take over

– handling data: Facebook post by @nicolaMeldrum looking for platform for collecting data from students’ self-study: suggestions include GoogleForms, and Slack https://slack.com


A few extra links were included by Marisa_C and fionaljp:





On reflection, I’m not sure we took the topic much further on from previous #ELTchats, except that there were different participants, plus there’s never any harm in being reminded of these issues. I think what I might find useful another time would be to focus on specific areas of independent learning and autonomous tasks, e.g.


a) the WHAT, e.g.


  • student materials (e.g. workbook, ‘supplementary’ materials); especially prepared / set-up stuff (designed/prepared/suggested by the teacher .. or later by students – e.g. Quizlet); miscellaneous stuff – e.g. films, articles, etc. (‘authentic’ materials, suggested by T/St); real-life stuff (e.g. buying bread at the supermarket, going to a film, reading a newspaper/magazine/brochure – in an L2 [probably] environment; online social media in English (use of Facebook, Twitter, blogs. etc); etc.

b) the HOW, i.e.


  • student- or teacher-led; competition/challenge/gamification elements; etc.


c) KEEPING RECORDS, comparing and sharing with other students, etc.


  • When / Where / For how long (activity length) / Outcomes (benefits-pitfalls) / Follow-up suggestions


Perhaps a future #ELTchat could drop in to focus on some of this (but by no means all!) – the more focused the topic, the deeper we can go, and perhaps this would be useful!

Thanks to all for joining in last Wednesday – it was great to be part of the group! (It was another reminder that I don’t do #ELTchat often enough!)


… and don’t forget to read the latest from #ELTchat: http://eltchat.org/wordpress/latest


[Excuse the mix of links and hyperlinks.. having tech problems!)


* * *

Classroom Observations – how to use best to improve our teaching -Summary of #ELTchat on February 15th, 2017

Sunday, March 26, 2017 16:15 | Filled in Summary

This is a brief summary (mostly a glorified cleaned up transcript) of the #ELTchat on February 15th, 2017

Summary contributed by Mathew Noble on his blog – reproduced here with his kind permission

or so we hope….

~ : ~

taek a look



The February 16th #ELTchat was on the topic “classroom observations and how we can use them (both as observer and observed) to improve our teaching”.


The chat kicked off with Sue Annan saying what I know most of us were thinking: observation is a really good topic! Because of this, Angelos reminded us, that we’ve chatted about it four times in the past.


Here’s a Padlet with those previous #ELTchats on the topic of observation (thanks Marisa!)


Nutrich then mentioned John Hughes’ recent survey on the topic of self-observation. A promising start.


Here’s the bulk of what was then discussed…




  • How about observing from the learner’s point of view? How engaged they all were, unspotted errors, etc (Fiona)
  • How many times each student talked or categories of student talk (Marisa)
  • Tally sheets for this kind of observation; very revealing (Ambartosik)
  • “I recorded learners’ pairwork on DELTA Module 2 and was shocked. Nothing I’d assumed would happen happened!” (Olya)




  • Transcribe a random 5 or 10 minutes and subject to classroom discourse analysis (Marisa)





  • Interested in recording observation – never done it. Maybe self-observation, too (Fiona)
  • I think recording one’s lessons is the most powerful tool for reflection and improvement (Angelos)
  • Or livestream it. Just let in a very few people on your livestream channel. Livestream is great if you have a good fast connection and no uploading needed (Marisa)
  • Skyping an observation? If you turned it into a @touchcast it would be an interactive asynchronous observation with opportunities to comment (Ambartosik)
  • “I think videotaped and demo lessons go a long way towards getting teachers to polish their classroom skills to a higher level.” (Marisa)
  • Yes – unlisted videos or private with password are easy to do – but take time to upload. Looking for an alternative. (Marisa)
  • “Do you use an iPad and upload to YouTube? How do you do it? I like the sound of YouTube unlisted’. (Fiona)
  • With recorded observations, the school might also start collecting short snippets of successful activities. Teachers are happy to share. (Olya)




  • We used to do pair observation. You could ask them to concentration on something which you needed help with. Useful. (SueAnnan)
  • [You can use] the last observation action points as focus points for current observation. Simple, but I think most effective. (Fiona)
  • We’ve just started a new idea of CPD observations: mini SIGs, which you join to suit you. Your own reflective practice, observation of others, sharing findings. It’s fab. The teachers are all on board because they can choose what they want to concentrate on. (SueAnnan)




  • A friend of mine has started doing “fishbowl” classes at conferences (teaches a group, conference attendees observe), then discuss. Scary! (Olya)
  • Unseen observations (via @ChrisMoyse) in UKed is a neat framework. Would love to implement it. (MattStott)



We talked about how not all teachers are comfortable being observed, but that perhaps it’s important to feel that discomfort and get on with it…with the ultimate benefits in mind.


Glenys talked about seeking out observations and watching her peers back in the day. To her, it’s simply “essential”.


Ambartosik wished that teachers had the opportunity to observe regularly (of course it’s quite rare to be able to do this). I think many of us feel this way.


Finally, Olya shared a link to a “really useful” talk on peer observation/coaching from IATEFL 2015


And here are some extra resources on observation that weren’t mentioned, but fit right in:


See you at the next #ELTchat?