Using Zoom in creative ways for ESL/ESOL teaching and learning

Hello English language Teaching Colleagues,

I want to call your attention to a new discussion in the LINCS Integrating Technology group.

You may have been using Zoom for several months now -- or longer -- to provide remote or online teaching and learning. Many ESL/ESOL teachers now depend on it. However, many teachers also complain that they have not figured out successful strategies, using Zoom (or other videoconferencing platforms such as webEx, GoToMeeting, or Google Meet,) that keep their learners engaged.

Using Zoom or other videoconferencing platforms, how do you keep your students engaged?

David J. Rosen, Moderator

LINCS CoP Integrating Technology group


Hello David and all, This is a great question, and I hope many teachers will weigh in with ideas. Like many of our colleages, I've been using Zoom to teach in real time since our classes closed in the spring. I was grateful to learn from colleagues during our Coffee Break about some online tools that can be useful during a Zoom class. I've been trying out a couple.

In this discussion thread, I shared how I'm using Flippity to create sequencing activities, e.g., sequencing sentences or sequencing paragraphs.  I included a link to the activity I created.

In this discussion thread, I shared how I'm using Flippity to create categorization tasks. (There is a link to the sorting task in the post.) Here's a link to a categorization task we did in class today before reading about the pros and cons of mail-in voting. The brief article we read is on the League of Women's Voters of Chicago's website.

I also created a vocabulary matching games on Flippity with words from this article about mail-in voting for the advanced learners in my class. 

Another site that I've been using a lot to create vocabulary and grammar activities is Quizzizz. I have been creating a preposition practice activity for learners each week using sentences from the texts we've been working with. Here's a link to the Quizzizz prepositions practice with the sentences drawn from the transcript of a video we watched last week about the history of the 19th Amendment.

Both Flippity and Quizzizz are incredibly intuitive and make it easy to create activities drawn from the texts one is using in class. If anyone has questions, I would be happy to respond. I had previously invited teachers to visit my online class, and that invitation is still open. This is the last week for my summer class, and my fall class will start in mid September. Please contact me if you'd like to visit at

Members can check out the thread which features links to the many tools (along with a brief annotation) that were shared during our Coffee Break. 

Take care, Susan Finn Miller

Moderator, English Language Acquisition CoP