Getting started

Deborah Healey, University of Oregon (dhealey AT uoregon DOT edu)

See Resource List for more details and suggestions
Unless otherwise noted, all of the items listed are free. Some may require a free subscription.

Planning & teaching

Saving and organizing

Controlled material

  • Breaking News English: 
    Readings and related (downloadable) audio based on news articles, at a range of skill levels, with extensive lesson plans and teacher ideas as well as online activities; searchable. This is a great teacher resource, especially if you download the Lesson Plan guide
  • BBC Culture Lab:
    Somewhat simplified, short readings on cultural topics
  • VOA Special English:
    The news, read more slowly than normal

Authentic material

  • Sources of academic texts
    These are on a variety of subjects. Some of the journals are more praise-worthy than others, but they are full-text and free.
  • Literature
    These are works that are no longer restricted by copyright, generally because the author has been dead for at least 75 years. You might find something more recent donated by a generous author, but not likely. Gutenberg also has a growing collection of audio books.

Online teacher tools

Quizzing and polling (mobile device or computer use)

  • Kahoot! -
    Designed for social learning; create surveys or multiple-choice or reordering quizzes that are taken by groups (or individuals). Results can be shown in real time. There is a time limit
  • Socrative -
    Create T/F, multiple-choice, or short answer quizzes that students can take individually, or competitively with Space Race. Space Race will display group answers in real time. See a tutorial at
  • Quizlet -
    Create flashcard-style quizzes. Quizzes can be taken on a computer or mobile device. Individuals can use Quizlet decks to study or groups can compete with Quizlet Live.  See a tutorial at
  • PollEverywhere -
    Create quick polls (thumbs up/thumbs down, multiple choice, rank ordering, word cloud, click on an image). Respondents can be anonymous or sign in; results for the group are displayed in real time. Good choice for workshops or formative assessment. A variety of video tutorials are at

Authoring and materials creation

  • LessonWriter:
    Vocabulary, grammar, pre-reading, post-reading from a text (800 words maximum). The free version lets you create standalone lessons. Subscriptions allow for class access to files and other kinds of sharing.
  • Hot Potatoes authoring program: free download at
    Create exercises to accompany readings; can be timed; use the exercises you create either online or offline
    See more information: Getting Started with Hot Potatoes PDF
  • Textivate- text reconstruction activity -add your own text. Nice tool, but now editing is available only by subscription: GBP10/year. 
Materials creation by teachers or students

Suggestions for using mobile apps

Assessment: Rubrics

Teacher feedback and file sharing

Motivation to learn: Authentic audience

Class discussion

 Resource List

Created by D. Healey; last updated 26 April 2018
Creative Commons License This work by Deborah Healey is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.

Deborah Healey,
Apr 17, 2015, 11:20 PM
Deborah Healey,
Apr 17, 2015, 11:22 PM
Deborah Healey,
Apr 24, 2018, 10:14 PM
Deborah Healey,
Apr 17, 2015, 11:21 PM