USING INFORMATION & COMMUNICATIONS TECHNOLOGY IN THE LANGUAGE CLASSROOM
Welcome to the workshop!
You can join our Google Classroom ( use code v3751r6 at https://classroom.google.com)
Twitter @uniliterate #ICTESOL
Virtual Learning Environments/Learning Management Systems
Edmodo (my personal recommendation if you want to create an online course for your classes, this video shows you how)
Flipped Classroom (here is a video about it)
Our reliance on Information Communications Technology (ICT) in daily life is steadily increasing, and with it so too is the expectation that teachers will use educational technology in their classrooms. Both English language ability and digital literacy are important skills for learners to master. How can language teachers combine both language learning and new media in their classrooms? This course will examine how teachers can make the most of the technology available to them. It will discuss applications and websites that can be used both in the class and set for homework. This course also examines the different ways teachers can use technology to facilitate meaningful language practice for students whilst making our own work more efficient and less time-consuming.
Introduction – how to make the most of ICT:
Question 1. Are you a technophile or a technophobe?
Discuss with your group why you are here and what you hope to learn. Have one member of the group summarise the main points. Be sure to consider…
- your own beliefs about teaching and learning
- achievement aims and curriculum
- the needs of your students
- the facilities available to you at your school
What is the most high-tech lesson/project you have ever done with your students?
What are the main limitations to your using ICT in class?
Approaches to integrating ICT
English education is now perceived around much of the world “as a basic educational skill alongside literacy, numeracy and information and communication technology (ICT) skills” (Ushioda, 2013, p. 2 following Graddol, 2006). I taught a class of 40 intermediate first year university students (non-language majors) who met twice a week; once in a CALL room and once in a traditional classroom using a published textbook. After abandoning my attempt to incorporate the textbook in CALL room activities via some kind of topic focus, CALL classes became independent computer-based lessons which utilised CMC, a digital cultural exchange and the creation and sharing of video projects. Despite the challenges of these kinds of activities, in the questionnaire 46% of the class indicated that working on videos was their favourite activity. 92% of students stated that they preferred lessons in the CALL room to those in the traditional classroom.
Vogel (2001) explains there are two main approaches to integrating ICT into language classrooms:
Advantages and Disadvantages of ICT
Applications & Sites that can be used in class:
Which words do you know from the word cloud?
Can you add more words?
Have you used any of these in class? How? Share you good and bad experiences!
Applications & Sites that can be used out of class:
Students in Japan have a lot of homework. Students may complain about the amount of homework, but try marking it all! As teachers, we have an almost ridiculous amount of marking and administration work. How can we use ICT to make this easier?
- Online Self-Access Centres
- Textbook Multimedia (CDs and Sites)
- Self-study sites
Be sure to VET every site or video that you recommend. Give students a list or a menu of appropriate content to choose from.
Which of the items we discussed can you implement in your own classrooms? What do you need to do in order to make it work?
ICT to facilitate meaningful language practice
Languages are not just school subjects. In order for a foreign language to really be meaningful, it needs to be experienced as a living and breathing form of communication between people from different cultures. As Charlemagne famously said, “to have a second language is to have a second soul”.
- Digital cultural exchange
- Using online discussion forums
- Video Projects
- Blended learning
- Class Blog
- MOOCs (Massive Open Online Course)
These projects require a balance of time, skills, support and facilities. By nature, most of these are collaborative projects, so be sure to work with people who can help you. You might find the following site useful:
Do you have any experiences with online
collaborative project work like this? Share your experiences, ask questions.
How could you implement something like this in your school?
Making our own work more efficient and less time-consuming
If you feel that using ICT in the class actually slows you down or makes more work for you, then you are not doing it right! The whole point of ICT is that it should make life easier. If it doesn’t, then maybe you haven’t tried these ideas yet!
- Using Mail Merge to send out feedback
- Using Track Changes to work on drafts
- Using the cloud to backup work, share, and submit files
- Online tests which mark themselves and give instant feedback
- Download lesson plans and worksheets
What are your experiences of using ICT to save time and streamline your work? Have you had any experiences where ICT actually made more work for you? Tell your group and congratulate or commiserate them as appropriate.
We have come to the end of the course. It is likely that we did not manage to cover everything, so if you have any questions please be sure to email me. You can also keep using the www.uniliterate.com and the www.learn.uniliterate.com sites even after the course.
What was the most important thing you will take away with you from today’s course? How has your understanding of ICT for language learning been affected by today? What would you like to do next? Have your personal aims been met?