Wednesday, 10 December 2014


Hello colleagues!

Finally, we reached the end of our course, the time passed incredibly fast!

Now, I'm looking at our
Wiki,  Nicenetand my Blog, and I've come to conclusion that we did enormous work!

It's absolutely fascinating!

Throughout the course, I tried tons of useful things with my students, you know what, they now look at the Internet resources with great interest and enthusiasm.
Thank you Courtney for helpful resources and beneficial ideas! You did it! Now I incorporate new tools and technology more frequently than I did before. The credit goes to you Courtney as an instructor of this course! I appreciate each of your step in clarifying every piece of information, thank you once again!

  I've created lots of things online and the results, I hope are more than just good! The best thing is definitely a "WebQuest", it was really challenging extra credit task, but I coped with it successfully!

Also, creating a
Blog was fun and interesting in the same way as Padlet and Interactive PPT.
By the way, I started implementing the Blog and Padlet on my lessons! Ss love it!

   As for Quizlet and Delicious my results are the following:



As for other tools, such as creating a
Google Doc, online handouts with various activities and Google forms, they were quite interesting too! These tools are very time-saving indeed! 

   In a nutshell, this week was really interesting one, because I've identified my level of technology integration, it was useful and beneficial!

   I'd like to thank all of you colleagues for fruitful collaboration and useful feedback on my work throughout the course! Your thought-provoking ideas were absolutely essential!
Thank you a lot! I wish you all the best!


Best regards,

Zulyar Kavashev

Kazakhstan, Almaty

Saturday, 29 November 2014


   This week was full of new things, let's say it was more practical in terms of
applicability of previously learnt resources.

I've learnt a lot about Blackboard features, it's perfect and dynamic educational platform to use with my students. Actually, I've just started creating my first online course for future IELTS classes in this brilliant platform.

Then I've created a "Padlet Wall" for my Pre-Intermediate Ss to share their thoughts and reflection about each lesson.

Next step was creation of edublog for my current IELTS classes, so as to enhance their writing skills in part 2 Writing essay task.

The links for all above mentioned resources can be found in our wiki and Nicenet platforms.

What was new for me is "ANVILL" (A National Virtual Language Lab) platform
introduced by Jeff Magoto. This is absolutely free, which is quite good for ESL
teachers. In the article by Tina Deveny Oestreich about tech highlights
introduced me to lots of new tools, so one of them is "ANVILL". I really like
the idea that it can be used as LMS. I consider that it's one of the Bboard
features as well. I'll definitely incorporate it in my teaching. I don't know
how to start, but perhaps, I will start with "Trace Effects" game, so as to
engage my Ss. It's great! Thanks Jeff a lot for this innovative approach!

Then I've created a puzzle for my Intermediate students on topic called "Describing People" in

Finally, I've created again my first wiki in, this is a link to it

As for my final project, I've done a lot this week, I think it's almost finished, my partners were great, thanks Sharmila and Gordana for being so helpful in this project review task! Thanks a lot colleagues! I appreciate everything!

In a nutshell, I enjoyed this week by trying out different tools! Thanks Courtney!

Best regards,

Zulyar Kavashev

Kazakhstan, Almaty

Friday, 21 November 2014


Burning Week 7

Hello everyone!

This week we've encountered with "hot issues" like "Autonomous Language Learning/Learner Autonomy", "One Computer Classroom"
and "M-Learning".

As for "Autonomous Language Learning/Learner Autonomy" I absolutely agree with three basic pedagogical principles:

1.Learner involvement - engaging learners;

2.Learner reflection - plan, monitor and evaluate learning;

3.Appropriate target language use - the target language as medium of language learning.

Furthemore, I've found lots of ways to enhance learner autonomy, I'd like to list, which I liked most of all:

1."E-Portfolio" - a digital collection of student's work and achievements;

2."Edublog" - a blog with an educational purpose;

3."MALL"/M-Learning" - learning which involves the use of mobile media, such as MP3 players, iPad, iPod or mobile phones;

4."CALL" - an approach to language teaching and learning which uses computer technology;

5."VLE" - a software system designed to help teachers manage online educational courses. Also known as (MLEs) and ;

6."Texting" - a form of communication whereby text messages are sent via mobile phones;

7."eTandem" - finding partners around the world via email, telephone and other media for creating learner autonomy;

8."LMS Blackboard" - learning management system for delivering distance learning.

Also, with "One Computer Classroom" there are variety things to do to improve self-study of learners.

It can be used for making presentations, creating different things in one group, colloborative learning tool and essential information resource as well.

I've understood one importatnt thing that when you use "One Computer Classroom" you should balance between non-computer work and computer work itself, so as to achieve cooperative learning environment.

Another tool we've been introduced is "Padlet Wall". I like this tool a lot, you can use it for any educational purposes.

In my case, I'd like to use it for sharing ideas and thoughts on how to perform effectively on language exams and on each lesson as well.

In addition, a couple of words on '2b/2b=?' )) 'To be, or not to be. That is the question', (Shakespear's Hamlet) of course, it's about "M-Learning".

I believe that this tool is the easiest way to create learner autonomy and engage all students at once.

Again as any tool it has some drawbacks such as it won't be affordable for some learners, but anyway, it can be used with any phones, simply as instant messaging.

All the ideas listed in "20 Ideas to use phone effectively" are very useful, it offers to use everything in the phone so as to achieve great engaging results while teaching the subject.

Best regards,
Zulyar Kavashev
Kazakhstan, Almaty

Saturday, 15 November 2014



Hello everyone!

This week was really interactive!

I've found out a lot about teaching large and small classes, the resources provided in our wiki were very useful, particularly articles by Rick Finnan and Donna Shaw. I agree that lecture classes can be boring, because it's only "Teacher-Centered", ideas about enhancing lectures by making them more "Learner-Centered" were great.

I find Interactive lectures Summaries of 36 formats as one of the greatest resources I've ever seen for engaging learners and making interactive lessons, it has many powerful ideas for busy teachers. I will definitely start using it with my learners.

I've learnt how to use and implement different tools like PowerPoint Presentations, iClickers (Personal Response Systems) and Microsoft Mouse Mischief. They are all wonderful tools, which make teaching easier and interactive.

Finally, I've made my first, let's say 100% interactive PPT. You can watch it right here.

I've made this PPT with another brilliant tool called VOKI
At first, it was difficult, but I believe that I coped with this task successfully.

The most important news I'd like to share is that I started implementing "QUIZLET" and "ANKI" with my students. They like these tools very much. First step was to introduce them to my class, so as Ss are currently using ICA, I've just sent them step by step instructions on how to "Join our class" in QUIZLET. Most of them coped with this task, but it's still difficult for one student, actually, I understand her, because she is older woman, who can use PC and smartphone at a good level, but she finds joing/signing up somewhere very difficult. Anyway I'll help her and I believe that she'll succeed using QUIZLET. Then I introduced "ANKI", again via ICA, I just shared a link to download page and I also asked them to download first decks for memorising lexis. I explained that "ANKI" will be used only as flashcard approach in learning new words, but "QUIZLET" will be ideal for those, who like memorising by playing games and doing quizzes.

Further, most Ss downloaded only "QUIZLET" to their Iphones from Google play market, but they couldn't download "ANKI", because it's really expensive for Iphone, on the other hand, it's free for "Android" platforms, unfortunately, only one student has "Android" smartphone. So I told my Ss to download Windows version of "ANKI" and that we will use "QUIZLET" in the classroom, but "ANKI" will be used at home on PC and laptops.

I consider that "QUIZLET" is a great tool for using in the classroom, firstly, because Ss will not use other dictionaries at all, and secondly, I'll use "QUIZLET" for conducting "phone quizzes". Actually, I'm planning to conduct one next week. As for "ANKI" I prepared decks to use them at home by Ss for revising new words.

That's all the information I wanted to share, see you next week!

Best regards,
Zulyar Kavashev
Kazakhstan, Almaty

Sunday, 9 November 2014


     Hello colleagues!

    This week as usual introduced me to really useful tools indeed. I found out a lot about "Project-Based Learning". I liked all three articles by John M. Norris,  Brulent Alan and Frederika L. Stoller, John Larmer and John R. Mergendoller. 

    I found creating rubrics very fun and useful, this tool is essential, particularly when you are conducting PBL   lessons. Let's say "BRILLIANT" approach to assess students' knowledge about the subject you teach! 

    As for alternative assessment I can definitely say that choosing a "TEST" must be really purposeful and contextual. Ss usually don't mind being assessed differently, so using alternative assessment can be effective. 

    As for practical part of this great week, I've created a rubric, analyzed "PROS and CONS" of "QUIZLET and ANKI" in terms of usability and finally, I created my first "WEBQUEST".  I shared my thoughts about it in my previous posts, look for it to find anything that will supplement your knowledge with its effectiveness on ESL lessons.

    As for webquest, I post it directly in Nicenet so that everyone can explore it and I hope that everyone will find it useful from overall content, for this purpose, I tried to make it more interactive. Enjoy! 
But don't forget to leave feedback!

    Regarding my class issue, I consider that "QUIZLET together with ANKI" will be ideal to solve problems of my students. They're really practical, so I believe that I'll achieve great results in improving vocabulary skills, Ss will definitely like it! 

   Thank you Courtney for every piece of information you provide us in this brilliant course and for useful feedback on each step we make to achieve great results in WEBSKILLS ! 

Best regards,
Zulyar Kavashev
Kazakhstan, Almaty

Saturday, 1 November 2014


     This week was full of new information. I've learnt a lot, i.e. how to differentiate"The Process approach and Product approach" in writing skills.

Next step was to search for new webskills websites, which can help in improving students' reading skills. I was excited when I came across with lots of multi-skills websites. Brilliant!

Another step was making technologically enhanced lesson plan, actually, I don't like planning, it's very time-consuming, but when I found out about ABCD Objectives, my life became easier. I've never thought that there might be another type of planning a lesson - technology based lesson plan, but I think it's very interesting one.

    This week I'd like to share some information about "Anki" program. The program is ideal for those who want to inhance students' lexis/vocabulary skills. Simply you should create decks (flashcards) for you Ss.

Now I'll tell you how...

First of all, you need to download this program at Download Anki for your PC/laptop anything here, after that Sign Up here, then click "Get Shared" here you'll see lots of categories. This time just choose English, because we are English teachers )). Here you'll find tons of useful "Decks(flashcards)" for your personal teaching needs. Choose one you like, then click "Info" and finally click "Download". You did it! Well done! Now just open it with "Anki" program, I think it's located in your desktop.

So, what do you think about this brilliant program?

Great isn't it?

Best regards,
Zulyar Kavashev
Kazakhstan, Almaty

Wednesday, 15 October 2014



    Greetings to all my dear readers!

    Let's admit that  it's a week of new ideas and and unexpendable resources! This week I've learnt a great deal of web search engines and how to use them for my specific needs. I think the best one for me is iSEEK. I could find everything I needed for my exam prep class, such as listening, reading, writing and speaking worksheets and lesson plans. NoodleTools list is ideal for for those who want to get promoted not only in teaching but also scientifically. For instance, if you want to write an article and publish it afterwards, you may find it useful to search for something more interesting and norrow-specialized, probably you'll find lots of new things there.

    To be honest, the ABCD Objective Framework was something new for me, although, I believe that it can lead your lessons' design to a good point. In addition, it's so simple to use at first, because I don't like designing detailed lesson plans, you know writing main goals, sub goals, assumptions, timetable fit can be very boring and time consuming, some teachers might not agree with me, but I consider that it's the matter of opinion anyway.  

    As for my final project, I'm sure that this week will be prominent for me because I've launched ICA and Blogger with my students for the first time ever. They were amazed by my creative approach to the lesson conducting. First, I've made some hand-outs with the overview of Blogger and ICA, I told them about specific features of these online tools and asked them to follow me in my Blogger. Secondly, I've asked them to be ready to use these tools, because from now they will be essential part of our face-to-face lessons. Finally, I told them that our lessons would be more interactive and exciting, that's why they need to get used to these tools first.

     This week I'd like to share a piece of information about another Web Tool called WebQuest. This is an inquiry-oriented lesson type in which most or all the information that learners work with comes from the web. It was developed by Bernie Dodge at San Diego University. Nowadays, most teachers use this tool to make their lessons engaging and interactive. I haven't used it yet, but within our course I will try to use it in my classroom. It will be a good addition to my own interactive lessons. Anyway, click this link WebQuestOrg and find out more about it.

 According to Bernie Dodge, you can create an effective WebQuest by implementing these six important stages:

1. Introductioncapture the students' interest.

2. Task—let students know what they will create.

3. Process—tell students the procedures to follow.

4. Resources—provide relevant Web resources.

5. Evaluation—tell students how they will be assessed.

6. Conclusion—ask students to reflect on what they've learned.

This is WebQuest Example click on it.

Would you like to use this tool?

Best wishes,
Zulyar Kavashev

Kazakhstan, Almaty