Picture this (IH Live Online Workshop January 2015)

Using pics & images in the classroom

Sandy Millin

Today I had the pleasure of presenting a Live Online Workshop for International House teachers around the world.

ELTpics webinar screenshot

The topic was the use of images in the classroom, including an introduction to ELTpics. This was the abstract:

Picture this: ELTpics and images in the classroom
Images are the language of the 21st century. How can we exploit them to maximise our students’ language production? This webinar will introduce you to ELTpics, a collection of nearly 25,000 images shared by teachers and other members of the ELT profession and available for you to use in the classroom. Learn how to make the most of the collection with activities to use the ELTpics images, those in your coursebooks and those your learners bring with them every day.

You can watch a recording of the session, which will take you 56 minutes:

Almost all of the activities were taken from the blogs of…

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Volunteering in South America

Why I decided to volunteer in South America…...

I’ve always wanted to help deprived children in a developing country. I chose to volunteer for 2 weeks at a day care centre in quite a poor and dangerous area of Argentina, and then at an orphanage in Brazil. A volunteering organisation named “Travellers” made arrangements for me. A little nervous at first, I travelled on my own in South America for the first time. I have so much to say in so few words, so I will just write a little about my Argentine experience for now.

What I achieved…

Each day, I took a 20 minute bus ride from centre of Buenos Aires, which feels very ‘European’, where I stayed, to the project. I was so surprised how much the surroundings changed. I was jumping over mucky puddles like a little kid again! I had heard some sad stories, but the idea of caring for these poor children gave me even more courage to visit this side of the city. On my first day, I brought the children some play dough – something we take for granted here was much appreciated by the children who had never seen play dough before and had no idea what to do with all these colourful pieces of clay! I made quite a bad attempt at making a butterfly out of it and the children were so amazed by it! We had a fun day and I felt I made a difference! The day care centre was just 4 walls, but the children were always so happy and the “Tias” (nursery nurses) were lovely and I wouldn’t be able to replace that experience!

What I got out of it…

I feel fulfilled to have made a difference to less advantaged children – even if I was in a dangerous area! It makes me happy to know that my contribution to the day-care centre will have a long-lasting positive effect on these children’s lives.

I also gained a better cultural experience, which is missed just as a ‘tourist’!


The future….

I hope in the future I can be involved in similar volunteering projects, nationally and internationally!

And finally, what I recommend others…

I recommend that more people should get involved in volunteering projects. No matter how big or small the projects are, you can make a difference!

Thank you for reading my blog