Technology and Media have changed the world!

In the last 70 years, technology has transformed from dialogue to digital with an entire world of resources available for teachers to use. This has influenced media and how we can use it in the classroom. Previously, our options were limited to newspapers, music and some television. Nowadays, we have an unlimited array of options to utilise in the classroom. Here are just a few options…


Blogs Vlogs Films Songs Music Podcasts Radio Internet TV

Magazines – Gossip, Fashion, Home, Business etc Newspapers News on TV 

Social Media YouTube Tik Tok Pinterest Images and Photos Websites All Advertisements Videogames


Advantages of Using Media

At BELL, we use media in the classroom as often as possible! These are some advantages to using media in the classroom:
Media can transform a lesson by providing innovative and engaging content for lesson plans.
Students are exposed to a variation of accents and dialects through the use of worldwide English.
It is the simplest way to utilise the interests of your students – most children are spending ‘an average of 23 hours a week on smartphones or other gadgets’ says the Telegraph in October 2019. OECD’s recent research shows children aged 3-15 are spending over 13 hours watching television a week. That does not include time spent online or playing videogames etc!
We can use authentic materials in the classroom and expose our students to real life examples of English in the world media.
By setting media based projects, students practise and revise pronunciation skills in a situation where they can record their own voice and hear their own mistakes.
Media can encourage collaborative communication in the classroom – they must work together to complete their project.
Students are exposed to a variation of accents and dialects through the use of worldwide English.
As a teacher, we can incorporate activities that use productive and receptive skills so that we are not limited to reading. This can be extremely useful for teachers because it provides opportunities to do so that other lesson plan formats do not.


Our Ideas

Songs – Listening, Reading and Writing

At BELL, we start and end every project with a song. However, instead of singing them ourselves we can use the YouTube videos to create a lesson around. – BELL’s Halloween Song. This teaches key vocabulary and can be used for a range of ages. Example activities could be: Fill in the gaps, Write the word, then write the _____ tense version, Organise the lyrics, What’s that grammar? (students identify the grammar structure presented). is a great website for ideas on how to use a song in your class.


Films – Speaking, Writing, Listening and Reading

Create a film. This one is an exciting idea for students that you can tailor to whatever you would like to teach. For example, you can ask students to include a scene using past perfect tense or past tense, or they must use certain areas of vocabulary. These days most students own a mobile phone and can use this to film their projects, as teachers our only problem is monitoring! This can be made easier by requiring phones to be on ‘Airplane Mode’ and providing students with time limits for filming scenes which they then show you at certain times. Asking students to provide you with updates ensures students are working on their film project and not on social media!


Step 1: Provide a stimulus – Your English book is missing!, The school is being attacked by aliens!, Courage etc.

Step 2: Provide requirements – use past tense, use hobby vocabulary, everyone must speak in the film, it must be more than 2 minutes long but shorter than 10 etc

Step 3: Students create a storyboard of their film.

Step 4: Students write a script.

Step 5: Students film their movie!

Step 6: Students edit their film together.

Step 7: Students watch each other’s films.

Step 8: Follow up task – Students write a review of their own or another groups’ film.



Gossip Magazine – Speaking, Listening, Writing and Reading

This activity is inspired by famous Gossip Magazines such as OK!, Mirror, Daily Mail, Lifestyle. You can use these magazines as  examples for your students.

Step 1: Create a headline story! You can use actual examples from the magazines mentioned above.

Step 2: Create Celebrity Profiles – these are used for students to prepare questions and answers and must include personal information as well as key information regarding the story.

Step 3: Show the students some examples and ask them to identify key elements of Gossip Magazines. What do they have in common? For example: headline, mini-headlines, the types of images used, persuasive language, format, sentence structures and sentence starters.

Step 4: Give students their headline and any extra language they might need to use – opinions etc.

Step 5: Assign celebrities to students and get them into their groups of same celebrities.

Step 6: In these groups, students consider the story from their celebrity’s perspective. Then, students become reporters and brainstorm questions for the other celebrities.

Step 7: Put students into new groups and ask them to hot seat each other to find out what other celebrity’s think about the story!

Step 8: Now, in groups (or on their own depending on ability) students must write the story using the information they gained from the other celebrities in the style of a Gossip Magazine. You can ask students to create their own front page too!


You can adapt this activity for younger students and ask them to use famous TV Characters that they love! There is the potential to incorporate the world of Harry Potter or Superheroes if you wish! Change the celebrities for their most beloved characters and grade the language!


Tik Tok – Speaking and Listening

Tik Tok is very prevalent in childrens’ lives! It’s the newest app that provides video creation and live streaming for teenagers. It is a great place to create fun short videos and use students’ interests to assist in learning English! You can do a similar structure to the film activity plan above. Or, provide a short audio/video clip that students must recreate:


Step 1: Show students the video a couple of times, allowing them to take notes but not write down the dialogue!

Step 2: Students then have a set time limit to recreate the video you showed them, using the Tik Tok app!

Step 3: Watch the videos and provide awards for the best use of English, funniest video or most accurate that students deliberate in groups and then can vote for! Just like the Oscars!


YouTube – Speaking, Listening, Writing and Reading

The most commonly used form of media in the classroom is YouTube! There is every type of video you can possibly imagine on YouTube these days! There are endless options for videos from YouTube just a couple are: Ask students make their own YouTube video reviewing a book they’ve read or a movie they’ve watched, Ask students to review a video, Students recreate a video, Students create an advert or trailer for a film etc.




These are just a couple of ideas that we have had regarding using media in the classroom! There is a world of resources online these days that we can all use to revitalise our lessons – ultimately, enjoying the lessons just as much as the students do!

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