As I announced in this blog, last year I was appointed as ICT coordinator at two schools of languages. The experience was really enriching and with great satisfaction I can say that authorities and teachers are much more interested in digital technology than they used to. One school opened a full equipped computing lab and the other changed all the computers for new ones!
- The beginning
Things were not easy. I found a bit of resistance on the teachers' part. They used to think they would have more work for the same money. In a way, it is true that teachers should devote some extra time to update their professional skills or get familiar with any new teaching material. I insisted on the importance of applying digital technology to language classes, but what was more important , I demonstrated it to them.
- From simple tools to more complex ones
I started showing them the advantages of the three portals : Google, Yahoo and Hotmail. How teachers can use a mailing list to be in contact with their students, how to use the calendar and google docs, how to open an e-group and how to chat. Another thing I showed them was how to use word processors, online dictionaries and mailing for writing activities.
- Blogs and Wikis
According to the age and level of language, I developed blogs as extra material resource or students worked in a wiki as a collaborative writing space. In these cases, students found it difficult to be so active using Internet tools. Students are sometimes lazy and prefer to depend on their teachers to solve language problems , e.g. to spell a word.
The ICT area is developing at both schools, we have some projects for 2010. Training courses for teachers to make them feel confident in the use of digital technology, a blog project involving different courses at a pre-intermediate adult level, go on blogging ( See examples HERE) and chat sesssions with sister classes at teenager level.
If you read this post and would like to start a sister class project, contact me to : firstname.lastname@example.org