Online learning is becoming a new normal for us. We find a variety of language-learning programs on the net.
The language-learning classroom stands on three pillars: Real-time instruction from a teacher, interactions between students, and quality learning materials.
A vital piece of ILSC’s move to virtual learning is the adoption of digital textbooks. These new e-learning materials support the delivery of quality language instruction to students, wherever they are.
Digital Technology Initiative supporting the Move to Online
How did ILSC transition to fully online classes so quickly? According to Cheryl House, a curriculum developer for ILSC out of Vancouver, e-book options were considered before public health measures made them necessary. “Even though we couldn’t have predicted this sudden move to online delivery, we were thinking about the future and wanted to be ready to accommodate our students’ needs.”
Because these digital technological tools were already in development, ILSC quickly adapted core courses to a digital learning environment. This means there is a continuity between ILSC courses and classroom materials. “Teachers can follow the same curriculum, use all of the great support materials and still deliver great classes in an online classroom,” says House. Equally as important is collaboration during the development process. “Collaboration is important to us at ILSC,” says Jennifer Williams, ILSC’s head of curriculum development. “We spent many months trialling different texts with teachers, collecting feedback, before we chose the most effective one.”
E-books in the Virtual Classroom
Like ILSC’s physical textbooks, our e-books are customized Macmillan and Oxford University Press materials, which provide engaging and level-appropriate activities for students. In the virtual classroom, teachers share pages and guide students through dynamic activities, including audio and video tasks and additional support resources.
“The technology also allows teachers to add links to websites or documents outside of the e-book for quick reference to supplementary materials,” says House. “Teachers invite students to interact with the material, much like they would in a face-to-face class.” This interaction can take the form of large group discussions or pair-work in smaller breakout rooms monitored by the instructor.
Also, all students receive a personal copy of the e-book for their level. Having a copy allows students to complete homework, fill in supplemental activities, and access helpful grammar/vocabulary banks and answer keys outside of class time. “It’s a great resource to review what was covered in class,” says ILSC-Montréal teacher, Mandi Vermilyea. The e-books “provide students with the opportunity to practice any elements they found difficult at their own pace.”
Whatever the learning objective, ILSC’s custom textbooks and e-books give teachers and students modern, well-designed material with lots of great support resources to facilitate English language skill development, anywhere in the world.
Do you want to experience those digital tools in the online classroom? To get more information, please check here.