Grammar and Spell Check Tool—Free for Your Students
Here is a wonderful new tool by GINGER that will help students compose with the right grammatical formulations and the correct spelling. Just type a sentence into the top line and then "Ginger It!" The second line will give you the correct version. If there are no mistakes, the two lines will be identical.
This tool fits in perfectly with the QualityTime-ESL approach to teaching. Ask your students to write short essays (150 words). To make sure they are not simply plagiarizing, set a theme and give them some vocabulary that they have to include in the essay. Ask them to put the compulsory vocabulary in bold.
Tell the students they must "Ginger" their essays before submitting them to you—and you will not accept any mistakes. Correcting will be so much easier. If you find mistakes, you simply underline them and write "RD" for "redo". For the "perfect" essays you can give a grade.
Then you organize oral activities in rounds or in pair work as I explain in my book QualityTime-ESL: The Digital Resource Book now available in a downloadable version (a zip file of 80 MB) (1,500 files with "language" exercises/activities for €14.99.) All the students will be speaking English or listening attentively to their classmates all the time! And you will have spent a minimum amount of time correcting.
Try it now and then begin thinking about the essays you wish to assign. I have an essay assignment for the listening comprehension on "Honesty" that might be a good way to get started.