Over the past few years, the educational sector has experienced a huge technological boom. Finding new and exciting ways to deliver lessons has always been imperative for education professionals.
However, when remote teaching became a requirement when the coronavirus hit, the demand for cutting-edge tools to support learning grew exponentially. While educational apps have been around for some time, the worldwide health crisis saw increasing numbers of people downloading and using them. In 2019, these apps saw around 185 million users. This figure increased in 2020 to 270 million, and growth has only continued since.
Educational apps are proving to be especially beneficial for online educators and their students. Professionals who teach English as a Foreign Language (TEFL) welcome the use of interactive resources to support the lessons that they deliver, and many of the latest mobile applications offer an engaging learning solution.
TEFL is a rewarding career path (just check out this blog post to learn more about the benefits that overseas English teaching can offer). However, it’s a job that requires a creative approach. Without in-person contact, TEFL professionals need to think outside the box and find teaching methods that allow them to connect effectively with their students over the internet and apps have a key part to play in this.
The Benefits Of Educational Apps For At-Home Learners
Educational apps offer a host of benefits for at-home learners. The best mobile applications are fun and engaging to use, enabling students to learn in an interactive and enjoyable way. As another advantage, they allow learners to develop and practice their skills at any time they wish and from any location. Whether they’re on the bus, waiting in line at the bank, or relaxing in bed, they can take an active part in their education. They can benefit from lessons in the palm of their hand no matter where they may be.
Apps can be downloaded to a wide variety of devices too, so whether students have an Android smartphone or the latest iPad Air, they’ll have no difficulty in accessing these valuable resources.
The Advantages Of Educational Apps For Educators
While students can reap many benefits from the use of educational apps, educational professionals can enjoy a host of advantages too. While mobile applications can be a great way to engage students in their own learning and give them a more fun way to explore new subjects and practice their skills, they can also offer teachers the opportunity to save time and effort while delivering content.
Google Slides and Google Docs are just two key apps that online educators can utilise to create collaborative learning activities that can then be used both in online classes and by students themselves when they are offline. Meanwhile, organisational apps like ClassDojo have a crucial part to play for those who are just starting out in their online teaching career, enabling professionals to stack all their vital tasks and tools under a single app.
There are plenty of other apps out there today too that educators can use to plan and set up exciting lessons that enable them to explain concepts in a truly interactive way that learners really appreciate.
Useful Free Educational Apps For TEFL Professionals To Discover
TEFL professionals can harness the power of a number of educational apps and use them both within their online lessons and to support their students’ at-home learning too. Here’s a quick overview of a few of the best:
One of the most beneficial mobile apps for TEFL educators is Edmodo. Completely free to download and use, this app helps with all aspects of planning and organisation. By using this app to upload quizzes, assignments and assessments, you can then choose to access them yourself during online lessons to demonstrate points and then allow your students to access them at home in their free time to reinforce and consolidate their learning. Since a space can be assigned to every class or student, teaching materials can be kept in the right places, while the instant message function allows students to get in touch with you if they need help at any time.
Learning by playing is something that students of all ages can find highly beneficial, and that is where the Kahoot app can prove to be so helpful. User-friendly and easy to access, this free app enables teachers to create their own quizzes with polls, slides, and questions using Kahoot’s proprietary software. They can then utilise the app for playing the games in class interactively, with students competing against each other or playing as a team.
Alternatively, self-paced quizzes can be assigned to students for them to use in their spare time at home. All of the quizzes you create will be saved for future use with other students or classes, saving you time and effort in the long run.
A perfect choice for older learners who are improving their existing skills, the Speak English app contains countless recordings of English speakers holding conversations or repeating phrases on a host of topics. Ideal for practising practical language skills that students might require in the real world – for example giving directions or attending job interviews – this app enables learners to record their own voice before comparing their version to the original recording.
Completely free to download and use, this app acts as an excellent supplement to targeted English conversation lessons, allowing students to perfect their pronunciation in their own time.
Unleash The True Power Of Online Education
By harnessing the power of the latest mobile apps, TEFL educators can really unleash the true power of online education, giving their students the freedom to develop and hone their newly-learned language skills at home while also making the most of their time during lessons.
If you’re ready to make your life as a TEFL professional easier while offering a host of benefits to your learners, it’s time to explore the possibilities that mobile applications have to offer.