Wider World: Teaching Teenagers Webinar Week

Our Teaching Teenagers webinar week saw our experts and BBC partners discuss the challenges faced by teachers of teenagers. From assessment to interactivity and learning more about teens, we covered the most pressing topics.

The Teenage Brain - Dr. Ken Beatty

This session sets the theme for this week-long course of teacher training webinars for teachers of secondary students. Dr. Ken Beatty, an expert in technology in language learning, explains what science teaches us about how teenagers think and how that informs our language teaching practice. Using examples from Wider World, the new Pearson/BBC secondary course, he demonstrates how content and pedagogy can frame and maximize learning outcomes for teenage students.

Creating Video Vox Pops for Language Learners - Catherine Chapman & Peter Price

A BBC producer and camera operator talk about the challenges and delights of shooting ELT video with real people on the streets of London. You will get an insight into the work of the BBC team as they set about creating real life video vox pops aimed at the teenage language learner. Catherine and Pete will show examples of the vox pops videos from Wider World, the new Pearson/BBC secondary course.

Interactivity - Dr. Ken Beatty

In this session, Dr. Ken Beatty draws together threads of the week’s discussions with a look at interactivity. How can we use the interactive features of past and present technologies to enhance teenagers’ learning processes? How can these processes mirror how teenagers already interact with the world? What role does interaction play in memory and learning? What happens to the brain when it is engaged in purposeful interaction? And how can Wider World help implement these principles?

Assessment for Learning - Brian Enqvist and Elena Merino

What is Assessment for Learning? How does this approach benefit the teenage language learner? And how can this framework help the teacher to understand their students and to tailor their teaching to the individual as well as the class? Brian Enqvist and Elena Merino discuss all of the above, giving examples from Wider World, the new Pearson/BBC secondary course.

Bridging the Authenticity Gap - Philip Warwick

Or how to bring real meaning into the lesson. In this session, teacher trainer Philip Warwick will explore the meaning of authenticity of content, and authenticity of task or purpose, in relation to the teenage learner. Illustrated with a huge variety of authentic materials, including extracts from Wider World the new Pearson/BBC course for secondary school students, this webinar will demonstrate the importance of authentic purpose for successful language learning - particularly for teenage learners.


Meet the Authors


Dr. Ken Beatty is TESOL Professor at Anaheim University and has taught in Canada, Asia and the Middle East and lectured widely on language teaching and learning from the primary through university levels. He is author of 130+ textbooks, including LEAP: Listening and Speaking, and has led more than 200 teacher-training sessions in 20 countries.


Catherine Chapman has been an ELT professional for over 20 years. She has worked at BBC Learning English since 2006, designing and producing multimedia ELT materials for teachers and learners of English of all ages, levels and nationalities.



Brian Engquist has spent over 20 years as an English teacher and teacher trainer. He often speaks about Blended Learning, advances in technology applied to education, assessment, and the evolving roles of teachers and students in this landscape. He works as Teacher Training Department Manager for Spain and Portugal.


Brian Engquist

Elena Merino is a Teacher Trainer for Pearson and teacher at the Universitat Oberta de Catalunya. She’s worked as a teacher for over thirteen years in different contexts and with different types of students and age groups. PhD in Communication and Multilingual Education, she’s concerned about meaningful tasks that engage students to communicate in English and help them make progress.

Elena Merino

Peter Price is the founder of PPM Production which produces ‘Design Icons’ for BBC Culture, documentaries for Radio 4 and the technology show ‘Click Live!’ for BBC World News. His association with BBC Learning English spans 13 years since his first role as a Studio Manager at World Service radio.

Dr Ken Beatty

Philip Warwick has been involved in ELT for over 25 years, working in South America, Asia and Europe as a teacher, teacher trainer and academic manager. Currently he is employed as academic coordinator for Embassy summer and as academic manager for the English project at Ilia university in Georgia.

Dr Ken Beatty

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