Language learners who practice English regularly outside of our classroom improve their fluency more quickly and successfully than learners who don’t. Motivating students to use English outside of class is difficult. We might suggest many tasks, games, websites, and apps, but how do we keep track of students who complete these extra tasks? One way to motivate English Language Learners to practice English outside the classroom is by awarding digital badges to those who complete tasks and attach the evidence that they completed the tasks. Digital badges are part of gamification. These insignias are like Girl Scout or Boy Scout patches. Students earn them after finishing a task. They must attach evidence, like a screenshot or link to their activities to earn the badge. Below, are seven free web tools for designing and easily distributing digital badges. Check out our webinar recording, Motivate English Language Learners with Digital Badges, to discover more tips and resources for using digital badges to motivate your learners.
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Websites and Tools
- MakeBadg.es– This is the badge maker associated with Makewaves, which is a platform for designing, managing, issuing, and displaying digital badges and missions for K to 12 students. Quickly design a badge with a choice of shapes, icons, colors, and borders. No registration is required.
- Open Badges-Post an email address to access this badge builder with several shapes and icons to choose from. Download the badge as a png file, but you can’t edit it the original, because the platform does not save the badges.
- Canva– Register for free and access several templates and icons to quickly design your digital badge.
- Credly– Register for free to build, issue, manage, and display digital badges. You can also download the free iOS app to design digital badges on your mobile device.
- Class Badges– Create a simple badge with a builder. Registration is free.
- Badgelist– Register for free. Design, manage, and display badges in a beautiful portfolio display.
- Google Drawing– Another way to create a digital badge, but more difficult than the other web tools. A free Google account is required.
Check out the Teaching with Technology Certification course we offer online.
Live TESOL webinars are presented every other Friday at 4 PM EST or New York time with Shelly Terrell. TESOL Lectures are open to the public, so feel free to invite a friend. To enter a TESOL Webinar, click here https://americantesol.adobeconnect.com/terrell/. Next, click Enter as a Guest, type your name, and click Enter Room.
Picture from Pixabay!