Learning English with YouTube and the BBC

I have been exploring a number of different YouTube channels this month to discover which channels give my students the best learning experience.

I first use http://www.classtools.net/random-name-picker/ in each lesson to choose who will answer each question. I sometimes put the list of student’s names two times if the class is small. This is great as it makes sure every student has to answer a question. In addition to makes the lesson a little bit more exciting.

For the younger students, I am now a keen fan of WowEnglish on YouTube. This is a fun channel featuring Steve and Maggie, his puppet bird. In each episode the children learn 5 or 6 different words. They repeat them a lot and so I am able to get students to answer each question using the spinning wheel and then I am able to get the whole class to repeat the words together. He has pretty much all the Cambridge curriculum covered, making it very easy to plan and use.

Another popular website is Dream English which again covers all the basics with a cool teacher. The children mix dancing and moving and learning all in one place. The main presenter is very child friendly and it does really help students to learn more English.

While I am looking at the simpler English websites, I can’t miss up the inspiring Jingle Jeff channel. He also has a useful website which has all the hard to find videos in one place. I use these to teach the alphabet and phonics. Again the videos are very funny to watch and you can watch the same videos time after time and not get bored of them.

For the older children, I am now using the BBC learning English site . There are three levels.

Lower – intermediate
Upper Intermediate

I let the students look at what is on offer from each of the lessons and the parts of the page which catch their eye is what we focus on. In some classes it is the weekly cooking drama. For others it is the weekly news. In each of the cases, the students choose and define their own learning. They are in control of their learning. They use the sites as a source for our conversations.

I hope this set of links is useful to other teachers and they too use them to great effect!  Keeping the students involved and motivated to learn is the key feature of a successful English class.