PODCASTS

Even if we cannot see, there are invisible radio waves that carry our voices from one mouth to another ears. In Turkey, language learning is mainly based on the teaching of grammer and the learning of grammatical structures. It helps us to succeed in written tests, but the world is not all about Turkey.

Just like many of our mentors said, language is learned through listening. If you want to have a competency in a language, you must be successful in every 4 skills. You cannot ignore one or two. Listening plays a vital importance in terms of providing the accurate pronunciaton, fluency and comprehension. 

The solution is simple. There is no need for listening the same kind of music by putting the headphones on our heads. You can download or syncronize your smartphone to any kind of podcast source you want about any kind of topic. By this way, you can both improve you knowledge background, change the view of the world and the most importantly you can be acquainted with any kind of sounds of English.

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DIGITAL STORYTELLING

Stories are the milestones that decides in which phase we are in our lives. The older we get, the less we are interested in the reality of the stories. When we are kids, we know nothing but the things that have been told to us. So we try to display the things taking place in this stories. Digital Stories help us to make them real.

Storytelling has always been a significant part of history, but the means through which the stories have been told has evolved with each civilization. Digital stories allow students to take a linear series of events and turn them into a multidimensional experience. It encourages them to communicate, collaborate, and research as well as to infuse media into the process. 

It enables us to create a virtual tour of a country or historical place, simulate the life of an important character or if we are meant to keep it simple, we can simulate our daily conversations or occasions with our friends. It lets them to use what they are imagining about.

 

Edmodo/Prezi/Nicenet

When someone comes and says that you are going to cover three topics in the first lesson of week on Monday, it’s possible to have a ‘WTF?’ moment. But just like we have always been saying that if we have computers to do something, it doesn’t take long to do. 

We have been taking our courses in crowded classrooms. Sometimes we cannot find a seat to sit, but sometimes we are the only one wo has come to the class. Communication inside the classroom is important, and everybody should be kept abreast of what is going on. Instructors should be able to examine everybody’s project papers or essay. That requires order. 

If you have difficulty to these, Edmodo is your medicine. It’s kind of network that allows to follow every single thing related to your class. You can organize groups, give them tasks, share the materials in their backpacks. To cut it short, it helps you to save money, time and paper. 

The other thing is Prezi. Many of us know how to use Microsoft Office, but if you are supposed to impress somebody with your presentation, PowerPoint may not be the solution for your problem. In this case, here comes the Prezi. It allows you to present whatever you like in artistic way. It has many templates that you can use according to the topic that you are going to cover. As many people don’t know what it is, it gives you advantage to make them choose you.

To be honest, after the things that Akayoglu said, I didn’t listen about Nicenet. I don’t know why people use it while there are better things to use. 

HOT POTATOES

There have been so many things that we have learned since we started this course, but I can comfortly say that Hot Potatoes is the most useful stuff that we have covered so far today.

The idea is so simple. There are some test types like JCloze, Jmix, JCross, JMatch and JQuiz. You can prepare a test easily that can serve for your purpose. Crosswords, matching activities, sentence completion items and many others. There are vital types that can really help us during online language learning & teaching. The programme allows you to change the background and theme, set a time limit for each activity or each question and etc. That’s the point we care about. You can prepare a test in any type you want and can get them togethger by using JMasher and can build a unit. 

Your students no longer have to be in the classroom to take the test. Let them use Hot Potatoes and let them have a box of potatoe chips. 🙂

DELICIOUS AND WEBHEADS

In this course, we have covered two subjects. One of them is Delicious and the other one is Webheads. Many of us are constantly following the networks like Twitter. If you are using twitter, I think Delicious cannot cause any problem for you. 

Delicious is a free and easy tool to save, organize and discover interesting links on the web. It says just like that on their main page. Every classroom should be like an environment where everybody has the equal rights to talk about what they think. Sometimes some people are apt to be introverted, and it’s harder for them than the others to talk in front of the people. You can create an environment in Delicious, so everybody can join and can type whatever they have in their minds. You can create hashtags and decide topics to discuss about. It’s a good network that can help you with your teaching.

The second topic that I’m going to mention about is Webheads. If we look at the definition on Wikipedia it says Webheads is a world-wide, cross-cultural, and vibrant online-community of educators with an open enrollment for anyone who wants to join. It’s kind of environment where people display a deep warmth and dedication to helping others. It’s generally used by the academicions, so it looks a bit dull to me. If you want to have further information, you can visit the websites.

ONE MORE INFORMATIVE LESSON!

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Wanna have information about our last CALL? Then, check and skim over what you see above!

Sakayoglu was in a good mood on monday. I have valid reasons for this thought. He started to lesson asking us what the dictionaries we use as the future of english language teachers. After some responses given by us, he told us Merriam-Webster Dictionary. Then, he introduced the KS Office.

We continued to the lesson downloading Socrative Student and Socrative Teacher to our phones. He gave lots of information about Socrative. Socrative has two application both students and teachers. It is a wonderful application to receive immediate feedback from students in the class. We can receive immediate responses from the students asking them multiple choice questions, true false questions or etc. By the way,it provides us to receive the responses as email. We can create quizzes(Excel format) and upload them to the site. We can divide the class into groups in Space part. If we want two groups, the app can begin categorizing us. If we create quizzes, we need to click the end activity button to end the activity. It doesn’t end until we click. Students can still do it after one day.

If it is come to Qrstuff.com, this is so enjoyable! All we need is to have a phone which has camera and Qr code reader application. We downloaded QR code reader and now it is so easy to access something which has QR code!

MORE AND MORE INFORMATIVE!

Didn’t I say CALL call us? It calls us every friday and look, I am again here to talk about what’s going on with CALL lesson.

CALL is starting to become more and more informative!

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Today, I observed that my friends are much aware of the technology, I mean websites we use; you know e-mails, passwords, gmail, edmodo, wordpress. I didn’t see anybody who still asks ”Ouch, what was my password, what was my wordpress user name, etc. It felt good to see my friends to check their twitter accounts firstly. I am talking about friends who acquired twitter account thanks to Dr.Sakayoglu.

Dr.Sakayoglu started to the lesson explaining pbworks.com and wiki. He said we can create files like idioms with bull or things like that. We can use pbworks.com instead of preparing brochures one by one to prepare sth for all provinces. He said we can do this with our students in the future. For example, we can prepare activities like Who? Where? When?. 

After these, Dr.Sakayoglu showed us a video about wiki. In this video, we learned how to edit in Wiki and how we can prepare sth. on Wiki. We learned the steps of editing. The video was so easy to understand and I guess everybody could understand how to edit. He said: ”Its rationale is to work or do sth. together, common summarizing pbworks.com. We can create a group for our class without knowing much techniques.

We continued with the settings part of the pbworks.com. We checked all setting components from our profile to classroom accounts. If we dont want students to acquire accounts separately, pbworks.com serves us a word document which includes available user name and passwords easily. Am I the only person who likes this idea so much? It was absolutely incredible for those who will use technology in the classroom.

In youtube videos, there is a code, embed, if we copy it, we can paste it to edit and we can share that video on our page. By the way, we can see the last revisions. Then, we checked the workspace users. In addition to these, we learned that two students cannot look at the same time. We can see a warning like (a person) is writing now. It means that if the number of the class is 30, 30 students will wait for their turns.

Finally, we learned how to use docs.google.com. We created a multiple chat platform named with CALL 2014. It motivated us to learn how it works. We prepared a presentation and some of us including me shared it in our twitter profiles.

It was an informative lesson again. I feel lucky for having a well-equipped teacher for technology!

Tweet, tweet!

Here I am for a new week!

This week, Mr.Sakayoglu started to the lesson explaining the major components of Word Press. We learned how to see our newest likes, comments, and followers. We learned how to get data on our site’s visitors from the stats. We learned how to view a list of our blogs and access their dashboards from my blog. We learned that freshly pressed presents us handpicked highlights from the wordpress.com editors. Then, we learned what the setting part includes. It is useful for updating our profile, password, and personal settings.After that, we clicked to our blog’s “dashboard” where we can write posts,control important settings and features to learn how it includes.

Secondly, not me but some of us met with twitter. They signed in with their new account. Then, we all met with twitterfall.com to see our tweets, ideas over a hashtag. We used #call2014 hashtag and shared our ideas. We enjoyed and motivated for the lesson once again. Some of us wrote #call2014 call me maybe and the others wrote their comments on lesson as well as funny ideas. The other things that we met are Feedly, Gmail. First one was new to most of us. 

Now I want to share something on twitter for education which we talked about in the class. We talked about whether it can be useful for education area or not. Some of us were curious about how it can be useful for education and how to use twitter in the classroom. I found a site which includes 50 ways to use twitter in the classroom. I found it useful not only for students but also teacher to check. It is http://www.teachhub.com/50-ways-use-twitter-classroom 

You know what they say, all good things must come to an end. Let me say goodbye for welcoming the new week!ImageImage

HARK TO THE CALL’S VOICE!

Hello, again!

Word press called me once again after a year and I am glad to be here to share my posts for a new course, Computer Assisted Language Learning.

Technology and communication have been indispensable component of our live. We use both of them in the education area as computers have significant role in the learning process. Indeed, the effectiveness of computers to our learning process can change user to user. 

Recently, as we hear from the education area, english teachers using CALL has increased. We can find a lot of articles on CALL available on the internet. According to the articles that I’ve read on the internet, CALL has disadvantages as well as its undeniable advantages. In traditional language classrooms, students can feel bored, so they expose to lose their motivation and interest to the lesson. However,CALL enables students learning through games, activities which can provide more motivated atmosphere. On the other hand, I have realized a disadvantage of CALL which is quite important. It’s being lack of trained teachers. It gives clues about the necessity of teachers’ having basic technology knowledge, if they use it in the education area. 

I am sure that this is the answer of why we take this course as teachers of future. We need to be aware of the new ways of second language teaching. While doing these, we need to be aware of how we can get maximum benefit from CALL programs for our ESL teaching and learning.                          Image