Webinar Wednesday: Virtual Learning Episode 5/6/2020 w. Adam Fitzgerald

Adam Fitzgerald
4 min readMay 6, 2020
Last year on the Isle of Skye, when I was living in Scotland studying with Cambridge University

Hello Teachers & Students,

We are here for this exercise today not to tell anyone how to teach, but hopefully to offer a variety of new tools, resources, methods and technology to aid or even enhance your educational abilities.

We are going to jump around to a few different links so I can show you different resources, such as a basic translator — which should be used as a back-up when first meeting a student, or with a new English-speaker / low-level learner — to ensure clear communications and effective lessons.

In addition to links and resources, I have also included a few charts via images below that are great practice for younger students and adult learners alike.

Sometimes you will have technical difficulties — such as when the screen freezes, or if the internet connection gets interrupted, the audio delayed, etc.

Do NOT get discouraged! Teaching online is still an amazing way to connect with students.

Some of the best lessons, especially for beginners, can involve typing out examples from graphics like the ones below into your Zoom or Skype chat while your student reads them aloud, or reading examples together back & forth — clarifying the examples by typing them out in the translator box if necessary.

Easy beginner lessons can cover Introductions, Weather or Question words.

Many of my adult students have told me they greatly appreciate expanding their vocabulary by learning synonyms and homophones — these can be especially important while learning English, because words that sound the same but have different meanings can be very confusing to new learners. Going over example sentences to show the differences, or even showing the dictionary definitions of words in some cases, will help students.

Reading articles together aloud, either going back & forth, or simply listening then correcting or helping your student, can be very helpful to improve pronunciation. I try to focus on positive articles, educational, informational, etc.

The article above ^outlines the difference between positive & negative habits that can be healthy to know about during our modern era.

The article below touches on a topic I discuss often with my students: how much news is too much?

Sometimes when you are working with certain students day after day, hour after hour — you have to find ways to keep things interesting — I try to focus on multiple activities for every lesson, sometimes even charting out the time accordingly —

15 min. practicing grammar (sentence structure) & vocabulary (homophones & synonyms)

15 min. practicing writing, either via emails or Skype or Zoom chat, then editing those writings together

15 min. pronunciation practice by reading together aloud — books, emails, presentations or articles

15 min. practicing basic communications discussing work, home, travel, etc. OR by watching & discussing videos together

I try to choose inspirational or educational videos, like these:

Graduation Speeches by great leaders or thinkers —

TED Talks —

or Educational videos like this one about the World’s Growing Water Crisis —

Hopefully this Webinar has been helpful for you today. If you have any questions either Karen, myself or another GLT Team member would be happy to assist you. My email is adamfitzsmith@gmail.com so feel free to contact me — I will leave you with some inspirational quotes regarding education.
Thank you for your time!