Tag Archives: Internet

Online Nursery Rhymes and Interactive Activities

This site includes these Nursery Rhymes in French, German, Spanish, and Italian:

  • Little Red Ridding Hood
  • The Three Little Pigs
  • Billy Goats Gruff
  • Goldilocks and the Three Bears

All of the stories are very interactive and have voices that read the story, words the screen, movement, Smartboard activities, and a very extensive downloadable pdf with activities to go along with each story.  This is a free site and kids love it.

Check it out HERE.

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Great Online Activities for French, German, and Italian

This is a website from Australia that is completely interactive.  There are listening activities, writing activity, and opportunities to read and respond.  Students have lots of fun with this one.

Check it out HERE.

French, Spanish, Italian, and German Games

This is a great site out of England that has pages and pages of online activities for students.  It is very well organized and you can find almost any topic that you want.  It is comepletly free.

Check it out HERE.

Why Teach Culture?

Here is an excerpt from Romona Tang’ article, “The Place of “Culture” in the Foreign Language Classroom: A Reflection”.

Language_CultureWEB

“According to Pica (1994: 70), the question “how necessary to learning a language is the learner’s cultural integration?” is something which “troubles teachers, whether they work with students in classrooms far removed from the culture of the language they are learning or with students who are physically immersed in the culture but experientially and psychologically distant from it”. Numerous other researchers have tried to address issues along similar lines, including Gardner and Lambert (1972) who postulate that learners may have two basic kinds of motivation. The first is integrative motivation, which refers to the desire of language learners to acquire the language while immersing themselves into the whole culture of the language, in order to “identify themselves with and become part of that society” (Brown 1994: 154). The second is instrumental motivation, which refers to the functional need for learners to acquire the language in order to serve some utilitarian purpose, such as securing a job, or a place at a university. The argument is that such instrumentally motivated learners are neither concerned with the culture from which their target language emerged, nor interested in developing any feelings of affinity with the native speakers of that language.”

You can read the entire article HERE.

References:

Brown, H. Douglas. 1994. Principles of Language Learning and Teaching. Englewood Cliffs, New Jersey: Prentice Hall Regents.

Gardner, Robert C., and Wallace Lambert. 1972. Attitudes and Motivation in Second Language Learning. Rowley, Massachusetts: Newbury House.

Pica, Teresa. 1994. Questions from the Language Classroom: Research Perspectives. TESOL Quarterly, 28(1): 49-79.

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.