Nowadays, knowledge in the Internet is being spread and disseminated via different channels (blogs, professional websites, forums…), but probably the most effective way to share this knowledge is through social bookmarking, which has become a paramount element in this big world of Internet. Users can build their own framework of sources of information out of different types of platform. Pure social bookmarking platforms like delicio.us or diigo let you create lists of favourite sites and store these lists in a referring library. The big issue is called tagging. Bookmark libraries can become massive lists really hard to manage. Tagging resources with relevant terms related help us search for the sites we need according to our needs (Secondary education, listening, ICT, interactives, edugames…). We only need to type the tags and the site will display those links that contain the tags we requested.
Other ways to share knowledge are sites such as Symbaloo (site where favourites are organised in visual libraries -webmixes- containing links of the same field or topic; Scoop.it is a service where users can build a page with brief posts where they mention a website or a resource, with an image, the link and a description. In most cases Scoop.it provides with a possible descriptive text that can be edited. Tagging is also paramount when we want to find our “scoops” within the page.
This week we have also analysed the approach given to listening and speaking skills through CALL. The issue has moved between the use of speech analysis software, more focused on prosody, phonetics a more scientific approach of the learners pronunciation, and the use of websites whose main goal is to help students improve their listening skills through the comprehension of real English and “lab” recordings. Many websites offer scores of recordings covering different subjects and levels. Improving our listening skills through songs is also extremely relevant, and our old ways with the cassette or CD player have been replaced by websites where we can read the transcript as we watch/listen to the song and even do fill-in-the-gap exercises (Lyrics training, Batlyrics).
We could conclude that all these different approaches make up for the feeling that ICT in language learning is here to stay!
Memrise is a new application to improve our vocabulary skills. It has a very clear interface and encourages students to take up the challenge of learning new vocabulary through memorisation as words keep coming out on the screen in a caroussel…
Those words we learn and practise start as seeds…
…and these seed grow as we practise them and show our knowledge…
Students earn points and are ranked in a social network interface… really catchy!! There are different languages available.
We can add new words and mnemotecnic rules to help other people learn the words.
Time to say your thoughts instead of writing them down. AudioBoo has been created for users to create short audioclips and publish them online… brief thoughts and ideas to share with the rest of the world, or the rest of our classmates! Our Batxillerat/K12 students can register with their Tweeter accounts, and share thoughts about what they see in a given outdoors route, or what they watch on the TV/Listen to on the radio regarding some specific event, conflict or any other piece of news.
Incredible website to enrich writing skills, even for those who want to go further into writing full length stories. Protagonize is meant for those who want to write a story and want to share it with the rest of the world, or just with a tiny bunch.
Collaborative stories have room here… start with an introduction and a first chapter, decide if this chapter can also be modified, invite people to a private writing party or just leave it open to everyone. people participating in the creative process can add their own chapters and maybe edit and modify the others… give instructions on what you want the other people (your pupils?) to do, or let their imagination wander free.
A very clear interface, maybe not very catchy for primary education, where you choose the kind of text you want to write. You can add an introduction where you can let out an idea of the story you are writing, or maybe the instructions for participants.
Decide wheter the story you are about to start is going to be your own individual work (students could create their own accounts and therefore work on their stories on their own), or you want to start a collaborative story, whereby a group of people/pupils will collaborate in the creative process chapter after chapter.
If you prefer to play as you write, if you want to create an adventure, click on Addventure and start a story which will branch out into different plots which will take the reader into different developments of the story… probably extra work, but extremely catchy and motivating!! Your pupils can make groups and each of these groups can create a development of the story you create, or each student of the group can develop the story they have begun cooperatively in a different way.
What are you waiting for? Sign up and start writing!!!
Watch the telly and learn languages! Lingorilla is a very interesting initiative where you can watch TV episodes to practise English , be part of language groups where you can talk and also keep your own folders with your favourite resources to learn English… or other languages! There are tests, quizzes and other very helpful resources. You only have to register and there you are!!