Tuesday, November 25, 2014


For my ESL classroom, I would use ESL podcast episode 1053; buying food at a concession stand. I would use this not only to have my students practice food vocabulary in english, but also to have them learn some english colloquialisms such as "grab a seat," "hit the concession stand," "to be out of___ and  "Highway robbery." This would meet standard ESL 4:1, using english for the purpose of social interaction. I would assess whether or not my learning objectives had been met by first holding up picture cards of the various foods mentioned such as popcorn, a pretzel, and cotton candy, and having students say the english words aloud as a class. I would next ask individual students for the colloquial meanings of things such as "grab a seat" and "highway robbery."
Popcorn! a popular food for movie goers.

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

Mod 11 Post 2

I have created a spanish comic strip in which two teens have met for the first time. My learning objectives would be that students would be able to introduce themselves, express pleasure to meet another person, and how another person is doing and answer this question in Spanish (Standard LOTE 1.A ML1A:A). I would assess this by role playing with individual students asking them questions(¿cómo te llamas, cómo estás?), and seeing if they could answer them properly. I would then reverse role play and have a volunteer student ask me the questions and express pleasure to meet me( mucho gusto). If the majority of the students were able to do this correctly, I would know that my objectives had been met.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Mod 11 Post 1

For my Spanish class, I have created an Animoto Picture Story for the introduction of reflexive verbs. My learning objectives would be for students to recognize and use these verbs(standard LOTE 1.A ML1A:A), understand that they are actions you do to or for yourself, and know at approximately what time a day these actions are performed.  After first going over the definitions of the words shown in the picture show and practicing the conjugations of the verbs on the board, I would assess these learning objectives by asking the entire class what a reflexive verb is and then having students choose three partners and ask each other what time a day they perform various actions. The conversation should look like this

Student 1:¿A que hora te levantas?
Student 2 :Me levanto a las siete de la mañana. 

If the conversations sound like this and the time of day given by student 2 makes sense, I will know my learning objectives have been met. 
A 90's rific screen; but it can show Animoto video stories. 
Animoto is not complete without music!

Thursday, November 6, 2014

follow up to last post

I forgot to mention; In a lower level Spanish class, the discussion would be in english to stress that learning another language is beneficial as well as fun! In this case, there would not be an LOTE standard to meet, but my objective would be for students to form and share opinions regarding the matter. I would assess this by tracking who participated in the conversation, ensuring that each student participates at least once.  In an upper level Spanish class, the discussion would be mostly in Spanish and I would assess speaking and listening skills according to standard LOTE 1B ML1D B; specifically addressing the use of a wide range of vocabulary and past, present and future frames. I would assess this by listening to each students' utterances and seeing if they employed newer vocabulary and employed the future tense at least once while discussing where they feel our world is going as far as multilingualism is concerned.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

English only? I think not!

 To create my TEDed lesson, I was looking for a  TED talk to stress to my students the importance of language and why it is beneficial to know more than one language. I thought I had found that in Mark Pagel's "How Language Transformed Humanity." I could not have been more wrong! Mr. Pagel closed by arguing that in our new globalized world, we are destined to have but one language. I was fit to be tied! I couldn't believe that this view would even be allowed on TED.
  After I calmed down and thought, however, I decided that I could still make a lesson out of this. My objective would be to have students listen to this opinion and form their own and discuss it in class with each other and with me. I would assign this TEDed lesson to do at home(but make sure they did not look at the and finally section) and use the next day in class to be have a discussion, first making sure that the students understood what they heard from Mr. Pagel by reviewing the brief questions I added to my lesson. Then, I would allow the students to share their opinions with me. I would close by sharing my conclusions in the "and finally" section. Although communication would be slightly easier if we  all spoke the same language; the cost of loosing all of that diversity is too great.
Our globalized,multilingual world.

Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Spanish Greetings using Tubechop.

  For my Spanish classroom, I have chopped a 10min 40 sec Learn Spanish video into a shorter segment focusing strictly on the basic greetings. My performance indicator would be vocabulary recognition. My objective would be for students to be able to use initial conversation starters. (perdone señor(a)) and time of day greetings (buenos días, buenas noches) and learn how to respond to such greetings.  This would meet the standard LOTE 1 ML1, using listening and speaking in the target language for the purposes of socialization.
   I would assess this performance indicator by walking around the room and listening as students start conversations with at least 3 classmates. The conversations should go as follows.

Student 1: Perdone Señor(a)
Student 2: Hola, Buenos días.
Student 1: Buenos días.

If the students conversations sounded like this; I would know my objective had been met.

The Flipped Classroom

   I have to admit, when I first heard of the flipped classroom , I was skeptical. I figured that not only would the face to face interactions between students and teachers be lost, but it would be more work for the students to have the lecture portion of the course outside of class on their own. Then I read "Seven Things You Should Know About a Flipped Classroom", and learned that the benefits students receive from this instruction far outweigh the costs. Although more of the responsibility for learning is placed on the student in a flipped classroom, when the students watch the video lectures on their own at home, they can rewind and pause to capture exactly what they need rather than have to try to capture it as soon as the teacher says it. In a flipped classroom, the teacher takes on a more collaborative and co operative role as opposed to the typical head of classroom role; so the face to face interaction is not lost, just slightly different.I definitely prefer the former role as a teacher.
  To comment briefly on the homework article, when I was in high school; homework was always one of my biggest complaints. I would always come home and say "I was just in school all day, what do I need homework for." Perhaps for a student who feels this way(As I am sure many do) the flipped classroom would be a better model. Perhaps if the "homework" was to watch the lecture videos and the in class time was used for more hands on, collaborative activities and in depth discussion of the lectures,students would enjoy school more and get more out of it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Mod 8 Post 1

  The game I choose to review was Third World Farmer.  Personally, I have played this game 3 times. My language learning objectives with this game would be translation from English to Spanish and writing in Spanish to describe a particular experience. I choose to make this a translation activity due to the fact that even when I downloaded the game off of the site in Spanish, the anual reports for each turn were still in English. That is ok though. I would have my students translate the "event of the year" and "summary" portions of each turns' anual report. To conclude the activity, I would have the students write a paragraph describing their experiences as a third world farmer. They would have to include information such as whether or not any of their family members died, what kinds of items that had to sell, and whether or not they found it difficult to afford crops and livestock. Not only would this game meet these language learning objectives, but it would also tie perfectly into a cultural discussion of migrant workers from Mexico and other Spanish speaking parts of the world. The students could have a virtual hands on experience with this.

Thursday, October 9, 2014

Mod 7 Post 2

 The game I choose to play was Polleke's Blue Room. I personally have played this game twice.  I would use this game and it's walkthrough to assess the ability of my ESL students to follow a set of instructions(Standard ESL1). As the teacher, I would read the instructions from the walkthrough aloud as my students on individual computers followed along and attempted to escape the room. I would not use images from the game other than during gameplay. I would assess whether or not my learning objectives were met by having each student indicate when s(he) had completed the task in each walkthrough instruction. If each task had been completed in a reasonable amount of time, I would know that my students were able to listen and follow instructions given in English.

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

Mod 7 Post 1

  Gamification is defined by the Wiki Article "What is Gamification" as "The concept of applying game mechanics and game design techniques to engage and motivate people to achieve their goals." The article goes on to say that gamification taps into natural desires for competition, achievement, and community collaboration. In essence, when engaged in a game the player seeks intrinsic rewards. These rewards are provided by the game mechanics, usually defined as in the form of levels or badges.
  The rationale behind using gamification in L2 classes is the flow experience. Flow is defined by "Sculpting Flow and Fiero" as "the satisfying, exhilarating, feeling of creative accomplishment and heightened functioning." A psychologist who studied flow extensively found that while in a state of flow, we are able to overcome weaknesses and kern from our mistakes. Learning from mistakes is pretty much how L2 teachers want L2 learners to learn. According to "A comparison of computer games and language learning task theory," flow is a mental state between anxiety and boredom. This is exactly the mental state learners should be in to learn the most. We as teachers want them to be bored nor frustrated. This ideal state is attained by a challenging task with clear goals and feedback. According to table 1 in the article, this is offered more by computer games than traditional L2 tasks.

Monday, September 29, 2014

Mod 6 post 2

  I would use twitter for my own professional development as well as with my students. Ideas for these uses can be found in the #langchat article and the and Using Microblogging Platforms for Educational Purposes.
  I would use #langchat to chat with other Spanish (or even possibly other language) teachers. We could share teaching tips or even new vocal words learned along the way. I could use this tool to develop my own PLN. Through these meaningful discussions about language, culture, and instructional methods, I could enrich my own teaching and at the same time help others to enrich theirs. Tools like these chats help teachers to truly become lifelong learners.
 "Using Microblogging Platforms for Educational Purposes" states that microblogging is a great way to get shy students to speak up. Although I would eventually have to evaluate my students on oral proficiency; practicing their written Spanish through Microblogging may be a start. I would also use Twitticate and have my class create their own Spanish story. Finally, I would use the project monitoring tool to guide my students through long term projects such as essays.
These students are highly engaged! Must be tweeting!

Mod 6 Post 1

 I followed the #edtechchat twitter chat. A variety of educators tweeted in about their PLNs, technology they use in the classroom, and how they feel about being a connected educator. One tweeter in particular, I have forgotten her username, tweeted that social media for education is a waste of time. I strongly disagreed with her. This chat for the most part followed the Q1 A1 format. The Qs included "What are some of your favorite ed tech tools?","How did you get connected?" etc.
  As far as whether or not I would use this chat for my own PD, I would have to say that I am not sure. Although the other educators provided me with some good insight and tools(i.e. google hangouts) it was quite hard to follow. I would attempt to reply to one tweet and 5 more would pop up and I would loose it. This was, however, my first twitter chat. Maybe it just takes practice.

Tuesday, September 23, 2014


 Since I plan to teach both Spanish and ESL, I could use two features of the epals site in my classrooms; in2books in my ESL class and student 2 student in my spanish class. In my ESL class, I could use in2books to have my students practice literacy in english. These english language learners would gain real world practice by reading quality children's literature and writing to their adult ementor. This meets standards ESL2 and ESL3; using english for self expression and critical evaluation with regards to literature.
 In my Spanish classroom, I would use the student 2 student feature of epals. My spanish learners could practice writing in Spanish to a student from a Spanish speaking country that may even be learning english. Not only would this help students practice their spanish and meet LOTE standards 1 and 2; using spanish for communication and cross cultural understanding, but also help them to gain a real life onsite into a new culture and possibly make a lifelong friend.

Monday, September 22, 2014


  A social media network that would be useful to me as a Spanish Teacher would be Yahoo Groups. There is a group called Maestros de Espanol. This group is perfect for collaborating with other Spanish teachers. I could share anything I find interesting with regards to Spahish or pedagogy. I could also share lesson plans and web resources. I could even view other teachers' Pinterest boards and share my own.
  Another use for Yahoo groups I would have would be class groups. With our class group, I ould communicate easily with students who have questions about assignments Students could also communicate with each other for practice. I could have them post a current event from a spanish speaking country each month. The possibilities are endless.

A learner is like....

        A learner is like a brand new computer from the factory and knowledge is like software. I choose this analogy because technology has become such a major part of the classroom. As corny as this sounds it is true. According to Connctivism, a Learning Theory for the Digital age, "technology has reorganized how we live, how we communicate, and how we learn. This claims that technology has changed the way we learn and acquiring knowledge in some cases is literally a matter of downloading software on a brand new computer.
   According to The Changing Nature of Knowledge"The network becomes the learning." This means that learners learn the most from networking with other students via online resources. With the many networks that are out there students can continue to work collaborativley outside of the classroom. In terms of the computer analogy our fresh from factory computers can acquire software from a variety of databases and sources.

Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Post 3 Diigo and Pinterest.

   After learning to use both Diigo and Pinterest, I would continue to use both sites. I do have a preference, however for Diigo. With the Diigo toolbar, I can copy and paste from the original site as opposed to having to take a screenshot and upload it. I can also use the toolbar to highlight text in a saved article. This would be perfect if I get that smart board I'm dreaming of in my classroom. Finally, I feel that the bookmarked sites on a Diigo page are slightly more organized than a Pinterest board.
    With this being said, I would continue to use Pinterest as well. Like on Diigo, I would be able to follow others and view their pins. Both sites also offer the option to use multiple tags. Although Diigo bookmarks are more organized than a Pinterest board, following multiple boards may give me access to more sites. Also, the idea of a virtual bulliten board may be more comprehensible to students. Both of these social bookmarking sites are an excellent way to share resources with others.

Tuesday, September 9, 2014

Blog Post 2: Welcome to the Social Media Revolution.

 As you have probably guessed by the title of this post, the first video I watched was The Social Media Revolution. All I can say is wow! I can not believe that some universities are not even giving out E mail accounts anymore because e mail is becoming a thing of the past. Back in the '90s E mail and instant messaging were the latest in communications. Also, Justin Bieber has more followers than the population of Sweden? I got a nice little chuckle out of "What happens in vegas stays in Facebook Twitter ect." I agree that peer reviews on yelp are more trustable than advertisements. Obviously a business will use advertising to get you to use their product(or eat at their restaurant or what have you) but a peer review is an actual experience.
 I also watched The Future of Learning. It was eye opening(yet made a surprising amount of sense) to find out that the school system was modeled after a factory or an army in which "identical people" were created. It is true that schools today do not cater to individual learning styles. I don't necessarily agree that anyone with access to technology can become educated. Although there is a lot of information now at one's fingertips, it still requires literacy and other fundamental skills to be able to access this information.  I believe that it learning to use technology  to access this information should be included in education.  Speaking of which,where was knewton when I was in school? I would have loved to know how and when I learned best. Maybe had I had access to something along that line I would not be as bad at math. To conclude, this video gave me hope that my children will go to school in a world where standardized tests don't dominate.

Monday, September 1, 2014

Blog post 1: Teachers and Blogging

  As a teacher, the first use I would have for my blog as mentioned in Blogging in Language Learning would be to communicate with absent students. As a student teacher there was nothing  worse than hearing "Srta Talty, I wasn't here yesterday wha'do I do?". On our class blog, I would post all class notes, assignments and due dates, and pdfs of any worksheets. Students would be responsible for any work they missed and if they came back to class without it, it would be graded as a late or missing assignment since it was on the blog and easily obtainable (within reason, obviously. I would not expect a student fresh from the hospital to complete assignments). I would also communicate with them via the blog if they had any questions regarding the posted notes or assignments.
  Another way I would use a blog would be to create literature circles. Standard LOTE1 ML2 states that students should be able to use reading and writing skills to express personal opinions and feelings. Perfect! If we read a novel or short story as a class, we would discuss it (in Spanish, of course) using the blog. I would post some prompt questions on my page and let the students do the discussion from there. In class, we would then post the blog up on the smart board(a teacher to be can dream) and discuss some of the posts and comments.
Description: Hi! my name is Briana Talty. I am taking a class on technology in the classroom and plan to use this blog to connect with my classmates and eventually my future students.