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Wednesday, April 20, 2011

FlexiMoti in Action

In a post I wrote last year called My Teaching Approach: FlexiMoti I reflected on my teaching practice in response to one of Jason Renshaw´s posts. It was Jason himself who generously coined the name of my approach and I've adopted it.

My attempts to be flexible are designed to meet my students' needs with the aim to motivate them to learn the English language in a way that suits their likes and dislikes. Having those principles in mind, I've also introduced technology in the classroom and we use wikis and blogs so my students can develop long-life skills that would help them become independent learners.

When classes started last March, I felt absolutely satisfied when one of my students from a group I had taught the previous year asked me if we would use blogs and wikis this year. I had already created a wiki for this class and was about to introduce it to them. So I thought the motivation level was ideal. I was too hopeful to consider that my students are teenagers and so their motivation fluctuates. Nothing new so far.

After considering ways to encourage my students to visit the wiki, I decided to start a competition and to offer a reward to the winner. I created a Lino Canvas in which I include a riddle a week and the first one to provide the correct answer as a comment in the wiki receives a prize. The first one I've granted was a chocolate.

I've found out that some of my students seldom visit their e-mail accounts and so when I update the wiki, they don´t realise about it. I hope this competition will be helpful.

I've been reluctant to appear in Facebook as I consider it's a social tool rather than a professional one but I've had to give in. As a Twitterholic myself I haven't found the sense of being on Facebook. Anyway, my students spend most of their cyber time on Facebook and so I've finally opened an account, which I'll try to keep only as a way of updating my students as to the class wiki new material. I'll do my best to keep my Facebook account as a learning/teaching tool.

What are the changes you've been forced to introduce in your teaching practice? I'd like to hear...

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