Sunday, 29 September 2013

Little Bridge


This program is for computers and it can be used in many ways, for example working individually, in pairs or in the whole class through an interactive whiteboard. I work with grades 2 and 3 and in my school we have a lot of computers but I think that it is important to let the learners work together to frame the communication. Just working on your own will not develop the learning.   

The contents in the software Little Bridge correspond well to the Swedish curriculum for grades 1-6.  The learners are familiar with the themes of the game such as everyday situations. For each theme activities that exercise a specific vocabulary and by repeating and consolidating the students can gradually build up their vocabulary. The spoken English in the program is clear and there is a lot of different ways to practice communication and linguistic expressions.

A classroom license gives access to additional materials as a teacher´s guide with lesson suggestions, learner’s books and copy masters. On the Little Bridge global community teachers are able to download these resources and to share ideas. On this community the learners also can extend their social network. The schools can be registered and then they can link to each other so that the learners can be connected around the world.

In the software Little Bridge there is a music machine and the teacher can use that function to sing karaoke together in the whole class. The songs are adapted for the vocabulary which the learners have practiced in the exercises. Little Bridge also includes a special part for practice which is suitable to solve in the class an interactive whiteboard. For example Kim´s game there you first see the whole picture and then have to identify which object that was removed.

The software has 3D graphics that are realistic and the characters are animated. From personal experience, I know that the learners appreciate the interactive exercises. It is good if the learners get motivated but it is also important to be attentive to the learners so that the use of the program not only will become a fun game. They also have to learn. That is, the learners can not only play by themselves. As a teacher I have to be present and communicate with the learners about what they are doing in the game.

I especially appreciate an exercise in this software that requires the learners to get clues from the character in the game to find a missing person. They walk around the streets in the city and when they meet a person they can stop and listen to what the person says. For example the person can tell them that Harry is in the playground. The learners can go there and have a look or ask a new person for more clues. When my learners did this exercise in pairs there were a lot of discussions and I noticed that they also went back to a character to hear the clues one more time.

The Little Bridge is not just a computer game for fun.  This program has an educational structure with varied tasks that are clearly outlined in the guide. Activities which are largely about communication. It is even possible to have dialogues using a microphone. Moreover it is interesting that Little Bridge has a connection to the common European framework (A1 and A2).


Helena Sjöberg, 1EN06U

Wednesday, 25 September 2013


Blog post. For a couple of years ago the headmaster in our school decided to buy smartboards to all the classrooms in the school. I work in a school with children from 6 years old to 12 years old. We are all using the smartboards a lot some teachers use them more than others. A smartboard is an interactive board which is connected to a computer and all that you do on the computer shows on the smartboard. The smartboard itself has a lot of tools to be used. For example if you are reading a text together in the classroom is there a function called spotlight there you can focus on a special part on the text with help of the light from this tool. As a teacher you can use it to make lessons in all the subjects in a file called notebook. You can write down tasks and put them in the smartboard instead of copying lots of papers and all the children can see them on the board. You can also write on the smartboard. You can look at websites together in the class on the internet and ypo can watch movies. The children can use it to show for example powerpoints. There are programs so that you can practice geography or English and since the board is quite big it is easy for everyone so see. The only problem is that there are so many things you can do and so many things to learn and so little time to learn. Catarina Olivos

iPad as a translation tool

Swedish as a second language is a part of my work at school. The understanding between newly arrived pupils and the teacher is problematic in the beginning, especially in the enviroment of the classroom. Last spring, we got the economical possibility to purchase a couple of iPads as a technical help in our education.

A translation application ("Say Hi") for the iPad has been a very good help to overcome previously mentioned language barriers. It works like an "interpreter" between student and teacher and is used with great advantage both individually / in groups, in the classroom / in small groups. This application also has been used successfully, during meetings with the pupils' parents, even if it can not replace a human interpreter.

There are some weaknesses with the tool since the translations might be wrong. The application is still a great help in the daily work for all participants.

Other applications are used for these iPads as well. Most of them catch the pupils' interest. The possibilities with all the different applications that are available feel endless.
It is very satisfying to see the pupils' joy/relief over being understood and to understand. 

Tuesday, 17 September 2013

Fun short movies, a way to learn easy everyday English.

At my school we do not have many ICT tools available, but we do have one computer in each classroom and I am also lucky to have a projector. I mainly use this to look at films. When it comes to using it in English, I have found some great short programs at av-centralen, http://

To be able to look at these movies you have to have an account at av-centralen, which is free of charge. You also have to ask for access to their streaming programs.

The films Kids English Zone are produced by BBC, which in my experience stands for good quality. The programs are for beginners, 6-9 years old, and last about 10 minutes. The contents of the short movies well agree with Lgr 11. The topics are well known to the children and about everyday life. The programs are about things that interests children.  Examples of topics are; family, interests, food, clothes and animals. They use a dialogue to communicate these subjects, which makes it easy for us to continue in the same way after the movie.

The films are all listed in the same way, which I think is good. The pupils recognize themselves in the programs and can concentrate on English. The children are the same, they repeat everything several times, and there are songs and also a comedy part. There is also a part that stimulate to creative work. Like for instance when they talk about body parts they show some children drawing one body part each and then putting it together as one body. It looks fun and is very inspiring and the children often want to do something similar.

My experience is that the children love the movies and they get familiar to many English words, sentences and expressions. They learn English in a fun way. After the programs, it is time to speak what they have learnt.          

Maria Kjellberg



Friday, 13 September 2013

I am one of those "old school" teachers that struggle a bit with this new way of thinking. What is wrong with rostrum teaching, discipline and proper books? I came to the conclusion.. Nothing! If you combine it with practical tasks and now a Days one of my favourite... The IPad! I work in Groups where some of the pupils got special needs. It can be everything from autism to a worried soul. The IPad helps both me and my pupils to reach our goals. Many students got a good Visual Learning but have trouble with the audio channel. With the right app the students get both audio and Visual Learning. I've noticed that all my students have stepped up their game since we got the I pads Also we got apps that helps the Children to pattern letters in early age for a better hand Writing.

The best thing is that you can use it in all subjects with the same good results and that it is easier to motivate the students.

Usually I get the apps from "". That is a very good site! Try it!