Posts tagged ‘ESOL’

a catch up meeting

How have you been using the iPads so far?

Tutor 1. “I have taken a single iPad into class to film student presentations. In the past I have audio recorded presentations and used these for students to self and peer review, but having the Ipad and recording the presentations meant I was also able to focus on giving feedback on body langauge too. I set the task up by giving students prompts of specific things they should give peer feedback on. This is linked directly to exam prep and evidence of improvement of a ‘soft skill’. I’ll repeat this task later in year so students will be able to see their progress over the course.”

To do: We discussed the possibility of using the You Tube Capture app on the iPad. The videos can easily be uploaded to the ESOL You Tube account keeping them private. During class, this privacy setting can be chanaged so ss can view the video and a discussion can be had on internet safety, privacy issues and ss given the choice about whether they want the links to remain open so they can share them with others.

Tutor 2. “to be honest I haven’t used the iPads yet. When I looked at them before they weren’t charged up so I didn’t use them. I like the idea of using them to record and linking this to mock exam practice. There is a level 1 criteria on body language so video-ing the students and doing a peer review task would be really useful. I can video them this week and plan for feedback next week.”

Other ideas: We looked at the Show Me app and discussed the possibility of higher level ESOL students creating videos on a particular grammar point. We also talked about Powtoon and whether this was a PC based software or a mobile app.

 

 

BYOD – ss sharing photos to practice describing people

Here is a short reflection from an ESOL tutor:

“All the E2 ESOL students have their own phones & in class they predominently use them as dictionaries. I had a lesson on describing people & I wanted to personalise the lesson by asking students to describe photos of people they knew – so asked them to take out their phone and look at the pictures on their phone. Many of the students looked worried when asked to do this and it took about five minutes of cajoling and encouraging for everyone to take part.

Once they did take part they really enjoyed the task & I had to work hard to stop the task and bring everyone back together!

Why the inital nervousness? Was it because they thought they would not be allowed to use their phone? That it wasn’t a useful classroom activity? Was it because they had reservations about sharing private photos in the class?

I’m not sure what the answer is, but once on task they all really enjoyed it and we repeated the activity at the end of the class for a chance to practice describing people again using the langauge we’d covered in the lesson.”

Getting to grips with Show Me – an Interactive Whiteboard App

Last year I spent time exploring the Whiteboard App Ask3, which I really liked. I was disappointed when I heard that TechSmith were closing this app down to concentrate on their other WB app ScreenChomp (but it was a good reminder that most educational apps are at the mercy of the markets) & it has left me looking for a new WB app for my low level ESOL class.

I played a little with Educreations, but found that the sign in process too cumbersome & the fact that you needed to sign in before you reviewed the video was also laborious. So now I am exploring ShowMe.

What do I want from a WB app?

1.It has to be easy for students to use. They need to recognise the graphics- for record, erase, next page.

2. You must be able to pause the video and re-start it.

3. To be able to add & edit images, eg crop, change size, rotate.

4. Sharing the video is really important. I don’t want something that just lives on the iPad that it was created on. But the students need to be aware that what they are creating may be shared and to have the option to keep this private. My group are a very low level ESOL group and I’ve yet to have a lesson on Internet security or introduce the language of public and private so until I do that I need their videos to be private. If the students were able to see each other’s creations on their own devices this would be an added bonus.

5. The sign-in/log-in must be simple. Read more ►

Lessons from the Classroom: Discussion

When the tutor interviews took place in March/April the themes that emerged were around general issues with the technology – general benefits and limitations of it, practical issues around access to it & confidence in using it, both technically and appropriately.

The biggest theme to emerge was the importance and value of collaboration, of having other tutors to meet, discuss and share ideas with. Following these interviews the project has continued, tutors have continued to use the iPads with their students and to share and discuss with those in the group they see in offices and in corridors.

So it was only later in the project that I was able to start to unpick what has been happening in the classroom and to reflect on how the technologies has been used. This evidence comes from my reflection on my own practice and the corridor conversations with all the tutors on the project.

Read more ►

student feedback: ESOL

This ESOL tutor came to peer observe the lesson where I got student feedback on using digital technology generally & the class iPads specifically. Following this, the tutor took the resources from this lesson & adapted them for her adult E3 class.

We had hoped to write a joint post about this class, however circumstances have not allowed us a chance to do this yet.

Here are the links to the educreation videos her students made:

Umbreen/Tamsila

Rubia/Shamila

*please note you will need an educreations account to view these videos

 

 

research journal: peer observation

I was so pleased that one of my colleagues from the project was available to come peer observe me for this session. The feedback was so positive it was reassuring to hear how well the students engaged with the task and I got a different perspective on the lesson.

Involving students in research

I think the most reassuring thing for me was around knowing that the students had given informed consent to take part in the research, to be videoed and for me to share their work with others. This was an area that I had struggled with a lot around exactly how I was going to get feedback from my students. Read more ►

research journal: ESOL feedback

The Plan

To give my ESOL students an opportunity to share about their use of digital tools in general and how we have used the iPads in class this year specifically.

The Preparation

As this is a low level ESOL group I needed to think about how I could be sure that students were giving informed consent to be allow their work and their views to be included in the project. I took advice from someone doing his phD in digital literacies & collated logos for different technologies we had used in class over the year and technologies I thought students may use at home.

The lesson Read more ►

student feedback: my ESOL class

The students worked so hard sharing how they used different technologies in class and at home.

While the students were working in groups, cutting and gluing the icons and sharing how they used technologies gave me a chance to go around and talk to them individually. What was challenging about this was that I was so busy talking with the students that my notes were quite brief.

College and home use

Here one student talks about how what she uses at home and on the bus as well as in college.

Another student talks about how he practices reading and listening in English by using his mobile phone and playing games that are in English. Read more ►

research journal: exam prep for ICT functional skills

The students were registered for the Entry 1 Functional Skills ICT exam. Throughout the year we had had a lot of practice at using Word, predominantly around designing posters or flyers that linked to their PSD topics. I was feeling confident that they had the ICT skills to pass this assessment, what I was concerned about was the amount of reading they needed to do to be able to understand the task. The assessment could be in any context, but the task was to open an email to receive two things. Firstly an attachment to a poster or flyer & secondly to find out some information that needed amending on this flyer. This amendment came in two stages: 1. add some extra information. 2. change some information.  In addition to to amending the information provided in the email, the students also have to label the image. This information is given in the assessment paper. Read more ►

research journal: description of a house

One of the units for PSD is Using Money. Most of the students had completed all the tasks for this module, but I had one student who had started late & had everything to complete & I also had a couple of students who still had some tasks to complete.  Therefore I needed to think of  a lesson that would review this topic for everyone but give those who had completed something different to do while I could work with those who still had PSD tasks to complete.

As a whole class we had completed a task where students had to budget for furnishing a room in a house, so I wanted to keep the context of houses for the extension task, while keeping the context of money for those who needed to complete their PSD portfolio.

The plan: To provide an extension task for students to design a house in one app & then create a video in educreations describing their house.

The preparation: I researched different apps related to designing a house. Searching the app store there were quite a few My Houseavailable. Having done the app review with the students I had some idea of the kinds of apps they liked & having done this task it certainly made me more confident with the final decision I made.

The app I chose was called TeenDream. In the free version there is a nine-roomed house & a variety of furniture to drag & drop into each room. I downloaded this app onto one of the class iPads, and because of the set up it appeared on all the iPads.

The lesson: We did a recap on the previous lesson & a warmer task where the student’s categorised different furniture found in different rooms. While the PSD group worked on their PSD task, the others were asked to decorate the house in TeenDream. If there was any furniture in the app they didn’t know they were encouraged to ask their classmates & some of them used Google Translate on the iPads.

Once the house was decorated the students made videos using the Educreations app. I asked them to do an introductory page showing the whole house, and then additional pages for individual rooms.

Evaluation: This was the first time I had used the Educreations app with the students, but I had just found out Ask3 was being closed down so new I needed to explore another Whiteboard App. I chose Educreations because the other ESOL tutor had used this with her students .

There are a lot of similar features to Ask3 & the students didn’t have too many problems in getting started.

Some of the students hadn’t realised that an extra feature of Educreations (compared to Ask3) was that you could have multiple pages in a single video. So some students made more than one video.

student 1: video 1. video 2. video 3. (in this final video you can see where she has made a mistake but the video has been saved anyway.)

student 2: video 1

As this was the first time we had used this, I hadn’t fully thought through the the sign in process & many students used their full (real) names. Therefore, as I promised them anonymity for taking part in this research I am only able to share two videos where students cannot be identified.  Also, the sign in process is lengthier than the Ask3 sign in so some support was needed for this & students complained that they couldn’t review their video before saving it, which had been a feature of SAMRAsk3.

SAMR: The combination of the house design app & Educreations used on the iPads has allowed for a Redefinition of the task. The students approached making the videos in different ways. Some students made notes (usually of the key vocabulary) before they recorded themselves, others wrote out full sentences first while some of the more confident speakers didn’t do any planning.