This is the last time

What is up, my beloved readers?

As the legendary Nelly Furtado once sang: All good things come to an end. This goes for this blog as well. Before I start writing my last blog post, I would like to state that blogging was a really fun experience for me. At first I was quite skeptical about the whole blogging thing, but I started to enjoy it more and more with every coming week.

So, let’s get to it. The last Tech-Gem that I would like to share with you is Microsoft Forms (https://forms.office.com). With this feature, that comes free with the purchase of Microsoft Office (Www.office.com), you as a teacher can create interactive forms for your pupils. I personally am using it for inquiries about my lessons, while my internship partner is using it to create a sociogram of our mentor pupils. Now I hear you think: “What can this programme do that an old-fashioned piece of paper and a pen cannot?”

Well, It doesn’t add extra options or functionalities, but it does save you a lot of time! Take the sociogram for an example: Kids fill in names of their favorite three class mates and their least favorite three class mates. Also, they fill in the three people they like to work with the most, and the three people they like to work with the least. What Microsoft Forms then does, when all the results are in, is create statistics on this information and create all kinds of visual representation of this information.

 

Relatiediagram

Simplified sociogram

That is all for now and for ever!

Thanks for reading my blog posts and maybe, until next time!

Stay classy Nijmegen!

 

NJS

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Ixperiencing the Ixperium Ixperience

Good afternoon, my beloved readers!

On Thursday the 6th of April, we got the opportunity to discover some new apps and other technology at the Ixperium at the HAN. It started with a meeting, getting explained what the day was going to be like and I was really looking forward to it! After testing some of the possibilities, me and my groupmates decided to use an app called Puppetpals 2.

 

Let me tell you something about the app first. With this app, you can (among other possibilities) insert faces of your own choosing into the app and put them on cartoon figurines. You can then record moving images, using your own voice as a voice over.

Image result for puppet pals 2

Example of Johnny Depp as a puppet.

We thought that it would be fun to design a lesson about the American Civil War, using the app to integrate our own faces as fictive soldiers. This would be a fun way to explain a difficult topic to lower level students. Unfortunately, the app crashed several times and this made it impossible to show our result to the rest of the group. Later, we heard that it had something to do with the iPad being faulty and this was a real pity.

Now, you could think that we were really fed up with it and that the day was ruined, but it was actually the best part of the entire TELL course. We discovered so many new things and it was a refreshing change of pace from the in class presentations. In my opinion, trying out new technologies is a better way to learn than just sitting down and hearing about all kinds of apps and sites.

 

This is all for now,

 

Stay classy, Nijmegen.

 

NJS

TELL Design Assignment

My dearest readers,

Last week, I presented my TELL Design Assignment. My group mates and me decided to present Screencast-o-matic (https://screencast-o-matic.com/). We explained through a PowerPoint presentatation what the practical use of the program is, how the lesson with the program went and we showed our peers an example of the results of the lesson.

Screencast-o-matic is a program in which you can make a video with a voice over. We decided to use this to let the pupils explain a grammar topic of their choosing.

Screencastomatic

Screencast-o-matic excels in simplicity and clarity

Overall, the presentation went well. We told what we wanted to tell and aside from a few technical hick-ups (O, the irony) we had a good feeling afterwards. The feedback we received was positive in general, but we got a few pointers with which we can work.

First of all, the PowerPoint contained too much text (rookie mistake). The solution to this is quite simple: only use key words and do not use entire sentences when presenting a product.

Secondly, we got asked the question in what way teaching grammar via SCOM would be more effective than just explaining it live in class. We believe strongly that if you can explain something to your peers, you understand the material fully, especially when the teacher has video evidence of the pupil explaining the topic.

Lastly, we received the commentary that our way of teaching is not inductive enough. This caused a discussion in class. Our teachers strongly believe that grammar can only be taught inductively and that teaching grammar can never be the main goal of a lesson, it should always be part of a bigger lesson.  I myself firmly disagree with this notion, but I have had this discussion in other courses and therefor I will not elaborate on this point.

To conclude I would like to state that Screencast-O-Matic is an amazing tool which can be used for so much more than grammar teaching. It can be used for teaching nearly anything and I can recommend it to any teacher!

That’s all for now. Stay classy Nijmegen!

 

NJS

Learning vocabulary…. How to make it fun & efficient? Notjimscrivener will help you out!

Getting your pupils to learn vocabulary is normally accomplished by testing them, simply asking for L2>L1 or L1>L2 translations. Students prepare for this by learning it by heart, preferably a couple of hours before the test has to be taken. The problem that I am currently researching for another course in my studies, is that the transfer from passive knowledge to active knowledge gets lost in the progress, because of this way of testing.

I have a pretty simple solution for this. Before I present you this magnificent tool, I will give you an example, because yeah, teaching inductively is not only applicable to grammar. See this example below:

If I would ask 10 random people on the street the meaning of the following word: “Kindle”, then at most, 1 out of 10 people would know this word.

Now picture the same situation, the same question, with one slight alteration:

What does the word “kindle” mean in the context “a kindle of kittens”?  Most people would guess the word correctly because of the context.

Now, I do know that presenting new vocabulary in context is the absolute opposite of revolutionary. But what if I told you that there is a tool that creates context for your pupils, adapted to their level and interests? That sound like an amazing tool right? Absolutely. The highly creatively-named http://www.vocabulary.com does all this work for you!

You can also upload a full text and http://www.vocabulary.com filters out the most rare words for you, which can help with a reading exercise.

PICTURE

Ample example of the website

That’s all for now.

 

Stay classy, Nijmegen

NJS

Start with an exit

My dearest readers,

You are starting to become a big part of my life. 10 followers is more than I could ever wish for. To celebrate this: I will give you the most interesting fact I have heard in a while: people who blog are (on average) 20% more awesome than people who do not blog! Aside from this totally made-up fact, I will present you with a needo tool for this week: Socrative’s exit ticket. The exit ticket is a 3 minute activity at the end of a lesson where the class has to fill in answers to 3 questions:

  • How well did you understand today’s material?
  • What did you learn in today’s class?
  • Question of teachers choosing

After all your students have filled in the all the questions, you get a summary/statistic of the given answers which you then can extract to Microsoft Excel in which you can make all sorts of diagrams and other visual representations of statistics.

Here is an visual explanation of how to use Socrative’s exit ticket:

Step-by-Step

How To Deliver an Exit Ticket

  1. Click on Launch, then click Exit Ticket.
  2. Socrative’s default Exit Ticket presents students with the following three questions:
    • How well did you understand today’s material? (1 of 3)
    • What did you learn in today’s class? (2 of 3)
    • Please answer the teacher’s question. (3 of 3)
  3. As your students click Submit Answer, Live Results are updated on your screen in real time.
  4. Once all your students are done responding, click Finish.
  5. As you finish, you will be asked if you would like to Get Reports for the exit ticket, click View Chart to see student results in a Live Results format, or return To Launch.
  6. If you choose to Get Reports, you’ll be presented with additional report options. Select the desired report type and then decide how you would like to receive your reports (e.g. Email, Download, or Google Drive).
    Note: Don’t worry if you close this modal, your reports will still be available from Socrative’s Reports section.
  7. Your students will now see the Waiting for Teacher window; students can then Log Out.

If you can turn this into a routine after every class, you will get excellent feedback about the difficulty and the things that work from your most important critics: your pupils.

 

That’s all for now. Until next time,

Stay classy, Nijmegen

Everything you ever wanted to know about English Language Teaching but were too afraid to ask

Do you think that we should let Greece stay in the European Monetary Union?

I think that this is not the time and space to discuss this topic, so let’s get to it.

Busyteacher(http://busyteacher.org/) is the gem I wanted to share with you, my passionate followers. It is doubtable if you could call this a “tool”, but hey, it is pretty darn useful and I have used it several times during my internship last year. The site offers a wide variety of multivocal worksheets for grammar, vocabulary, listening and the other essentialia.

Example of a ready-made worksheet

 

Stay classy, Nijmegen!

This weeks internet extravaganza

Good afternoon and welcome to my third blog!

This week, I was collaborating with my peers, designing a lesson series for our upcoming ROC project. One of the assignments we intend to do is a brainstorming-sesh in which we hope to activate as much pre-knowledge as possible. As the old-fashioned, internet-fearing teacher I am, I initially wanted to lead this brainstorming-session with the good-old whiteboard and marker. When thinking in terms of this course and its objectives, I thought: “there must be something on the World Wide Web for brainstorming” and paint me glasses and call me Harry Potter, there is. Wordle (www.wordle.net) allows students to type in the 5 or 10 words they asssociate with the key term and makes a word web consisting of those words, displaying words that are mentioned more often in a bigger font size. I hope this is helpful to all you teachers out there!

wordle

Stay classy, Gelderland.

NJS

The gem for this week

What’s up guys? For this week, we were asked to bring a gem to class. It turns out, since I am such a vlogging fanatic, there was a tool waiting for me all along! The webpage is called educreations (https://www.educreations.com/) and you can use it to make an informative video with pictures or moving images and voice over everything you see. It is very handy for grammar teaching and it even has an app for mobile phones and Ipads.

That’s all for now. Until next time!

 

This blog was brought to you by Robijn Black Velvet©