Our teacher started to the lesson by explaining ‘‘Second Life’’ being the interesting topic. Yes, its name is interesting. Second Life is a 3D online digital world imagined, created and owned by its residents. It is also an exciting platform for multi-user visual simulation. You can establish groups to social networks or communities. We installed program of second life into our computers. Then, we selected a character and went on. It is adaptable and the users can retain intellectual property to their creations. It enables us the social interaction through dialogue and collaboration thanks to the theme of its program. In addition, it enables simulation and experiential learning or role playing. It has informal learning opportunities for foreign language. Then, our teacher showed us what we can do on it. I found it interesting and entertaining. This was our last week. It was so saddening for me because C.A.L.L. was the only lesson which I came not without being bored. I thank my Sedat teacher for everything he taught us.
This week’s topic was ‘‘Weebly’’. When our teacher told the weebly to us, I had no idea about it. Then, our teacher explained it to us and we were enlightened. Weebly is a free online web creator. Firstly, we had an account and signed in. Then, we created and organized our web page. There are many sections for that. You can upload any picture or also text to there, you can share a video and also make a slide. We organized our web pages by selecting a theme and adding photos, videos. There is a section for the personal information and we added something about our personal information to there. In my opinion, it is actually entertaining. Then, we added our wordpress address to our weebly web page. We shared a video from youtube and a tape recording from NPR. In addition to them, you can decide from settings how your weebly page looks on the mobile phone. It is great, isn’t it? Yes!
We started the lesson by talking about Sugata Mitra who we have mentioned in the previous week. Then, our teacher explained us ‘‘Podcast’’. It has various advantages in the education. Podcasts enable students to access the information any time they want. Students can download the information to the device of their choice and listen/watch whenever they are free. Then, we talked about ‘‘NPR’’. It is like American version of TRT channel in Turkey. There are programs of many subjects and you can dowland them as mp3. There are many news and 24 hours programs. While you are in a bus, an auto, or an office, you can listen to the programs whenever you want. It is very helpful web page to improve your English. If you have an iTune, it is easy. It is not necessary to do anything, the program in your iTune will directly dowland and update news from the NPR.
Then, our teacher explained us ‘‘Audioboo’’ and we had an account for it. It is an awesome program. The program is practical for tape recording. You can record your voice and load it to your profile. It is free for three minutes. If you want to search any subject, you can find it there. In addition, there are many records of other people. For example; when you write ‘English learning’ on the browse tab in there, you can find many tape recordings for beginner level students. You can form a board and collect your students’ datas or homeworks etc. on there. Your followers or students can see them on your profile.
This week was the one of useful weeks. There is a program that almost all of us know in our computer; ‘‘Windows Movie Maker’’. Our Sedat teacher attracted our attention by showing a slide about his past class and classmates. He said that you can make a slide with everything about your class till today. It is not possible for our class, because we can have difficulty to find any photograph etc. when we decide to make a slide. Anyway, I advise you, many sweet slides can be made by using the movie maker. In addition, you can use ‘‘storymory.com’’ to use the story and I suggest you to click the link of ‘‘learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.org’’. This webpage is very useful and practical for an English teacher who wants to find a source of story.
Besides, it enables us to use four skills (reading, writing,speaking and listening). And, I want you to say another informative webpage ‘‘storyjumper.com’’. When, you can prepare sweet stories by using it and you can publish into a book. Our teacher asked us to prepare a story and we benefited for it from the british council. We copied a story from there and created our story. There are the parts of creating story such as background, characters and of course, text. Choose your background and character according to your story and it is ready for usage.
Then, we clicked the link of ‘‘dfilm.com’’ and we learnt another web page to create story. Of course, you can choose your characters and actions. It looks like a short movie and it is helpful to act your story.
We started this week by talking about WiziQ.
‘‘WizIQ’’ is a platform for anyone and everyone who wants to teach or learn live, online. We had an account in WiziQ and we learnt some advantages of it. For example; WizIQ puts learners and teachers together regardless of the boundaries and enables live, online teaching for absolutely no cost to the teacher or the student. When you write anything that we want on the part of course, we can follow the lessons. We opened a course to learn how it becomes. We can choose anything such as your time limit about your course and the system will create your course. It sounds great, isn’t it? Then, we entered a course that our teacher created. It was limited with ten people. There is a part of whiteboard and you can transfer your word or power point document to there. Another advantage is; while you are preparing the presentation in your home, people can ask any question to you in online platform. Then, you can show a picture on the white board and you can discuss on it together. Interesting thing is the part of raising hand. The participants can raise their hand to ask a question like classroom setting and you can select the person you want. You can add a video there and the learners can speak on it.
Then, we opened our google account in ‘‘Google Hangouts’’. After that, we clicked the link that our teacher gave and a platform appeared. It is more practical than the others. Then, we talked about ‘‘Google plus’’. It is very useful, but limited with ten people. It supports a video connection. Its availability for the mobile phone is the most important advantage to us, you can connect it by your phone.
Hi, I am Nurdan. I was born in Giresun. I am studying in Department of English Teaching at Abant İzzet Baysal University. My school practice is in Bolu Gazipaşa Secondary School now. For more information, have a look at my Prezi ;
We started to the lesson by talking about the syllabus of the lesson in this week. Firstly, our teacher explained ‘‘nicenet.org’’ to the class. Nicenet.org is a website that offers free online course management software. It is like a forum page. If you want to learners not to lose their attention in writing process, you can easily use this webpage. It has primitive looking but it is useful in teaching process. There are parts such as the class remembers and class schedule. As a disadvantage, you can’t load a word document to there, but you can write directly your text to there. After that, we touched on ‘‘Dokeos’’ which we have already known since the beginning of term. Dokeos is an open source corporate learning suite. You can load it to your computer with its set up together and add it to your webpage. If you want, you can change its name, besides you can follow from the part of reporting how many minutes the students stay in the page. For example; if you stay in the page more than five minutes, your account directly signs out in the dokeos. Then, we started to talk about ‘‘Edmodo’’ and we signed in. Edmodo is a social learning platform website for teachers, students. There are some advantages as different from the pages such as the social networking sites. For example; you must add a person to the group to form a group in Facebook, but in Edmodo, you write the link of your group to there and your students are directed to there when they click on the link. You can see from the part of notifications what people do in the edmodo. When a teacher gives a home work to the students, s/he can publish an announcement. It is limited of 140 characters like the twitter. In addition to that, the homework can be published also in any date that you want and you only follow it. As the last, you can limit the time of activities and prepare a questionnaire.
Lastly,our teacher explained ‘‘Prezi’’ to us. It is an ideal webpage for preparing a presentation. I didn’t use it by this time and I understood that that is so pity. Prezi is a great program for the effective presentations. You can prepare your work on the 3D pictures thanks to Prezi and present your presentation. It can be loaded as a pdf document to the computer. The disadvantage of Prezi; when you want to edit on your work, you can load it to your computer after editing on the webpage again. As last, you can add a link of any video from the youtube to Prezi, it will be added directly to there.
In also this week, we learned very sweet programs. I liked the Prezi most and I am sure that it will be helpful to me in the future.
In this week, I couldn’t attend to the lesson. A subject which is important for testing was taught in the lesson and I missed it. A teacher wishing to prepare an effective exercise can ask himself/herself ‘‘which software or program must a teacher use?’’ There must be a program which is both clear to understand and including different types of quizzes. There is a program supplying these needs. Its name is ‘‘Hot Potatoes’’. It provides us some useful programs for creating quizzes.
They are JCloze; filling the gaps in the blanks. JQuiz; it is for the multiple choice-select or short answer etc. questions. JMatch; matching the words with their definitions. JMix; it is ideal for the jumbled sentences. JCross; you can prepare a crossword. In addition, you can give time limit to your activities and you can write any feedback to the distractors of questions. As a result, you can collect your activities together as a unit with The Masher. There are many choices for you in the hot potatoes. It is actually a useful program for English teachers, but it has some difficulties. In this week, we prepared quizzes for all types of the hot potatoes and I could do my homework difficultly. As every week, I learned a new useful thing in teaching English and technology and I am getting happy for that.
Time is passing rapidly and we see the fifth week of C.A.L.L. As every week, there are much more knowledge that we don’t know. We started to the lesson by talking about ELT groups. Our teacher asked us what we are member of the English groups. Then, he made a presentation about an online group. There are three men; Vance, Maggi Doty and Michael Coghlan. They have come together in the internet as online since 1998. Firstly, they started in a web page ‘‘http://study.com’’. They started to meet regularly on Sunday chats and they founded a community. This community is TESOL (Electronic Village Online Session). It has been there since 2001. They organized it together and supported each other for studies. In this point, our teacher told us an interesting opinion. He said that in Turkey, many people don’t share their opinions, papers or findingsJ Unfortunately, he was absolutely right. They met at conferences at face to face. And, these three men talked together on yahoo. Their web page’s name is webhead. In our class, there are limited people who have a yahoo account and I haven’t a yahoo account. But I can get a yahoo account and join, then participate in to the weekly chat sessions. You can follow people’s conversations in this way. Then, our teacher talked about his yahoo account and showed his groups to us in there.
As second useful subject, we learned the Dropbox . I hadn’t a dropbox account and signed up. You can use the dropbox as an online sharing page. When you sign up, it directly loads to your computer and a file is opened in your computer. It is very easy because you make some changes in your files and the file will directly change in also your dropbox account. You can share any file or article in there. Moreover, it is so helpful that it gives some sweet gifts to users such as extra 160 GB in consideration of your any duty. It is like your hard drive. Especially for English teachers, for example, you can’t send to your students any very full file from your email, but you can share it with your dropbox and what’s more it is very easy to use it. When you see a shared video in there, you can watch without dowlanding it. You can benefit from serves like collecting any homework or sharing a material.
As third useful subject, we talked about Delicious. If you haven’t an account, immediately get an account. Our teacher started to talk about it by asking ‘‘how can you get your favorites in your computer with these computers now?’’ Users can see what the most famous items on the web are so far and refer to them to be able to go directly to their source. (Social Bookmarking site) We signed up and followed each other. You can look at things that you wonder by writing on search tab in there. It acts like a huge database where you can find whatever web link that you want.
Day by day, I am realizing that there are many useful web pages that I don’t know and it is so pity to learn them in my last year.
I can say to end this week as saying a sentence that we said in first week ‘‘The technology CALLs us’’.
What about mobile learning? Mobiles will be a key technology to provide that learning support. Developing world is giving an opportunity to us to explore the new technologies every day and we are just following it. In this week, we started the lesson by talking about the mobile learning. Our teacher, Mr. Sakayoğlu has various choices about this matter and proficiently transfers his knowledge to us. Of course, as an English student, one of things that we need is a comprehensive dictionary. There are many dictionaries in the internet and our teacher shared his dictionary, Mirriam. It is useful and purposive. After this talk, we learned ‘‘Socrative’’ which is one of the best teaching and learning settings. As long as the appropriate class environment and devices, an English teacher will perform himself/herself in professional way with the technology.
Socrative is an online student response system that allows teachers to engage students with educational interactive games and exercises. The teacher can control the students with an instructive web page in the lesson. In addition, if you want to ask anything to a crowded group, you can use this web page easily. We can give an example such as ‘‘who wants to be a millionaire’’ programJ You can huddle students together in this way and take the responses in a more systematic way. Only thing that you need is to enter with a room number. For example, you can prepare a multiple choice test and give the percent of answers given by the students. Is it very rational, isn’t it?
The results are given in an excel document and you can see which student answers and what they answer. There is a space race tab for that. Socrative is easy to install on smartphones and tablets. Stop and think one more time and use this technology. Of course, learning and technology’s work are never done. I want to talk about a useful program ‘‘QR Code’’.
There is no need to write vital details down. A simple code captures the desired information. You want to give more information but you haven’t more blanks in the document or paper, then only then the QR Code is just for you. For example, you can print a brochure with this code. How? You connect to ‘‘www.qrstuff.com’’ and you see many choice to add a link, video, photograph, text etc. People can directly get necessary information by scanning the code on the document with their phones. This is as simple as that. There is no necessary to write more words and texts. Also in this week, we learned many helpful web sites in the way of being a technologic teacher. This lesson is becoming more informative day by day and I like this process.
Seymour Papert says us ‘‘The best you can do is position learners where they can find what they need to know when they need to know it’’.