Teaching tips

29th October 2004 at 01:00
* Establish clear ground rules so that pupils understand that using computers is not a "play lesson". If you wouldn't allow them to listen to personal stereos during a non-ICT lesson, don't let them listen to music on the laptop.

* Have a clear routine: I get pupils to log on and then push the screens down (or turn them off on desktops) while they load up. Use this time to introduce the lesson.

* Have an online starter available that students can use independently if you need to sort out any problems such as forgotten passwords. I use WordLab on www.englishonline.co.uk

* If you want to talk to the class, ensure they turn their screens off or push them down. It takes a second but avoids distractions.

* Avoid using laptops to type up written work. They can be far better used structuring the writing.

* If the internet or network is essential for your lesson, do have a back-up idea so that you're not stuck if you lose access.

* Try activities yourself first so that you are able to demonstrate them.

It's often a good idea to try them on one of the computers that students will be using.

* Do get the students to save work regularly.

* Don't try to reinvent the wheel. Share ideas and resources.

www.teachit.co.uk has a massive resource bank and is developing a wealth of onscreen resources that would suit whole-class teaching. You can also ask for advice on the discussion board. NATE and englishonline also have loads of advice for using ICT.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today