A Writing Project Turns into a Digital ESL Resource Book, a Website and a Series of Podcasts
An ambitious project
Four years ago I set out on an ambitious project: Writing a digital resource book for ESL teachers. Colleagues had told me how much they had enjoyed working with me and and numerous former students wrote to tell me how useful my course had been. They kept insisting I should write a book to explain my “method” and my “philosophy” on teaching. They thought this would help other teachers, those starting out in the profession or others looking for ways to acquire skills leading to more effective teaching of English as a second/foreign language.
A digital resource book with hyperlinks
So that is precisely what I decided to do. I soon realized, though, that I might have a problem since I wanted to include recordings, PowerPoint presentations and even student films. That is when I thought up the idea of a digital resource book with hyperlinks going from the chapters of the book to a vast document annex. Teachers would read the book on a computer and thus be able to click directly on the hyperlinks to see a text, the accompanying key, some slides or even a short film made by my students. As I learned more about information technology, I realized that my project would function as I had dreamed about it. I would also be able to pass on to another generation all the discoveries I had made and of course warn them about the mistakes that occurred on the way to elaborating an effective core curriculum for my team of teachers.
After four years of work
Now four years later I have completed my project. I even have my website QualityTime-ESL.com to explain how my digital book functions and show samples from the Document Annex. The first chapters of the book are also available but without the hyperlinks that make the reading more convenient. To take advantage of the new technological features teachers can order the DVD on the website. Furthermore, I have edited a film I made myself with my students over a school year called Scenes from an ESL Classroom . On this second DVD teachers can see how my students go about doing the exercises that I elaborated.
Advertizing the book
I have now done what I dreamed of doing, but I also realize that it is time to get the information out i.e. advertise. As I have always been a teacher and have never been in the “business world”, this is not easy. But I decided to start by informing organizations such as TESOL. I am a member and I gave a presentation at the 41st Convention in Seattle on “Student Films as a Memorable Linguistic Experience”. I have also run several workshops for TESOL France in Paris and in Grenoble on different dynamic techniques to help students cope with oral expression. Lastly I hope that information about this digital resource book will be spread by word of mouth.
A tribute to my students
Whatever the outcome I can say that I truly enjoyed putting this book together and reminiscing about the great years I had with my students. This book is also a tribute to all the excellent work done by students. Samples can be found in the Document Annex. If I can help just a few people around the world, I will have achieved my goal! So if anyone is interested in the book “QualityTime-ESL: The Digital Resource Book” by Marianne Raynaud, please visit my website for further information and good luck to you all for the coming school year!