Category Archives: Technology

Interactive Music and Lyric Activities for Foreign Language Practice

Interactive Music Video Website for Foreign (World) Language (French, Spanish) wlteacher.wordpress.comThese are very interactive music activities that I came across on Lyricsgap.com.  The songs are on video (linked to youtube) and for each song there are 2 types of activities to practice the lyrics: Fill in the missing word or phrase (three levels) and karaoke.

There are lots of song in different languages and you can even add to the activities or upload your own song to the site.  The song and activities are assessed and approved before they are placed on the site.  These are fun activities for students to do individually or in pairs:

Using Wordle in the World Language Class

Wordle is a resource for generating “word clouds” from text that you provide. The clouds give greater prominence to words that appear more frequently in the source text. You can tweak your clouds with different fonts, layouts, and color schemes. The images you create with Wordle are yours to use however you like. You can print them out, or save them to the Wordle gallery.

These word clouds can be used as a pre-reading activity in a a second language.  Students can look for the most prominent words and begin to decipher what the text will be about.  Student writing can also be put into a word cloud and you can have other students visually look at the text.  There are many interesting uses for this free tool.

Here is an example using a Neruda poem:

SABRÁS QUE NO TE AMO

Sabrás que no te amo y que te amo
puesto que de dos modos es la vida,
la palabra es un ala del silencio
el fuego tiene una mitad de frío.

Yo te amo para comenzar a marte,recomenzar el infinito
y para no dejar de amarte nunca:
por eso no te amo todavía.

Te amo y no te amo como si tuviera
en mis manos las llaves de la dicha
y un incierto destino desdichado.

Mi amore tiene dos vidas para amarte.
Pore eso te amo cuando no te amo
y por eso te amo cuando te amo.

Wordle in the Foreign (World) Language Classroom (French, Spanish) wlteacher.wordpress.com

Check out the site HERE.

Lingt: Great Free Site that Facilitates Speaking

lingt

www.lingtlanguage.com

This is a great new site that is extremely easy to navigate and is very user-friendly.  The teacher can easily record his/her voice for students to hear, then the student simply clicks and records his/her own response to the question.  The student can then listen to what he/she said and easily delete and redo.  The teacher can add in text, YouTube Videos, and images as well.  The great thing about this site is that it is completely online and does not require downloading any software onto your computer or the student’s computer.  The students submit their spoken (or typed) response to the site and the teacher accesses the student work through his/her Lingt account.  Student do not have to sign up for an account, just the teacher (and it is FREE).  Students simply title their work with their name and the teacher accesses it that way.

I recently met the two MIT students who created this site and they are eager to get teachers using it so that they can make it as user-friendly and efficient as possible.  They are also committed to keeping this fundamental part of the site FREE.  You have to visit and try it out for yourself.  Wow!

Here is a rubric that I use to assess student performance using Lingt.

Try it out HERE.

Podcasting in the World Language Classroom

Here is some great info about podacsting from Langwitches:

How about creating your own podcast for you Foreign Language or ESL classroom? This can be done in different ways:

 

  1. Teacher recorded
  2. Students recorded

The first podcast I tried out was for my 5th graders. We had studied all South American Spanish speaking countries and they were getting ready to take their comprehensive test at the end of the year. I already had set up a study guide on our classroom website and wanted to take advantage of the popularity of MP3 players among my students, so I creaded episodes for each Spanish speaking countries for them to download and listen to.

6th graders are studying Central American and Carribean countries.I decided to involve my 6th graders more into the creation process of the podcast by making them responsable for writing and recording a script for a country (which I assigned to them). They were divided into groups of two or three students and given the homework of writing and practicing the script. The criteria that I gave them was, that their script needed to inlcude the following:

    • Country’s name
    • Geographic location
    • Currency
    • Flag
    • Interesting fact about the country
    • Be creative
In the following week we recorded them in class with Audacity.

World Language Technology Goals

6_9_2009_1_51_1240_cutting-edge-internet-communication-technologyThe goals of using technology in the foreign language classroom are the same as in any foreign language classroom: to provide students with opportunities to engage the target language through reading, writing, speaking, and listening comprehension. In fact, using technology, and computers in particular, can only help to give students opportunities to encounter the culture of the target language more authentically.

It the past, it was believed (during the audio-lingual days) that structured drills and repetition were all that were needed to make students more proficient in a language, and this is what “language labs” were mainly used for. Now, research in applied linguistics has shown that meaningful exposure to a language is the most important factor in language learning. The Internet, CD-Roms, recording software, and audio files all provides these opportunities for students to be exposed to the target language in a meaningful way.

The authentic language that students encounter when conducting web-quests or reading on-line versions of newspapers, magazines, and catalogs (store Web sites) is more engaging for students and also provides opportunities for cultural awareness and empathy.

Regardless of the type of technology that a teacher uses, it is important to keep in mind that the meaningful exposure to the target language is the most important factor. Many technology-based activities do not look like traditional classroom exercises, but this not a bad thing. When students are engaged in an activity that forces them to make meaning of the language that they encounter, they are gaining in proficiency.