#ICT4ELT Week3 task

And so this is my task for Week3 of this wonderful course: I decided to embed a video about myself

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Educanon and Zaption- working with videos in class

Last year I came across these two wonderful tools: Zaption & Educanon.

 

Educanon

 

 

Zaption

 

They are both tools to work with videos:

1. You register as you do with any other tool. The good thing is that you can register not only with Facebook or Google+ accounts but also with your Edmodo account which is quite confy. You can obviously opt to sign in using your email and username.

2. Once in, you must choose a video you want your students to work on by selecting it and pasting its URL.

3. Then you can add questions to the video by indicating where. It will stop and you create your Multiple Choice; True/ False; Open Answer or just a Reflective pause. You can also crop the video.

4. Once you’re done editing you can preview it in the students perspective

Good things:

a) You can work with any video you choose

b) Once  students start watching they can stop the recording but not rewind or forward it

c) There’s no time limit to complete the task

d) They can do it as a homework assignment or in class

There are some differences between these two tools such as features or type of questions permitted within the free plan. They are worth exploring!

Click on the following link and have a look:

http://www.educanon.com/public/21486/95077?cn=s

 

 

PDW – eTwinning in Guimarães, Portugal

I was fortunate to have made part of an eTwinning PDW (Professional Development Workshop) in my own country, from 6th to 8th November. It was great.
More than 100 teachers from more than 25 countries spent 3 days learning and working together.

First dinner with a wonderful table: Greece & France

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Ready for the Plennary session

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Final assignment: presenting for the Secretary of State on how to use Kahoot and Thinglink.

 

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And my final achievment!

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Student exchange program Portugal-Hungary

It all started in the eTwinning platform.

Éva Matyas from Hungary and I contacted and  started building an exchange programme between our schools.

1st step STUDENT SELECTION

Finding an equivalent number of students to engage in the activity. The selection process was left for the coordinator to decide. You can opt to select them by grades, randomly or by writing a motivation letter. At the end we came up with an uneven number 6-9… but everything went just fine!

2nd step PLANNING

The teachers involved prepare a plan for the 2 weeks – one in each country – involving the exchange students. This usually contemplates a working plan – attending lessons, watching and making presentations or others that the teachers decide together with them –  as well as a social one. Dates are settled and parents are informed.

3rd step A NAME FOR THE PROJECT

A name for the project. We chose: LET’S BLEND CULTURES because that’s precisely what we did.

4th step FUNDING?

The first question that may arise is: who pays for this? In fact student mobility requires money and as this is not an Erasmus+, we have to provide our own. How do we minimize the costs?

  • Students & teachers are accomodated in HOMESTAY, which means they stay with their project peer & his/her family
  • Meals are provided by the host family (breakfast & dinner) & by the hosting school (lunch)

That said, the only costs they incur are the flight fare and some pocket money.

It is feasible. It was feasible and for some of my students this was their ONCE IN A LIFETIME experience

16TH – 19TH MARCH 2014

DEPARTURE TIME: PORTUGUESE GROUP GOES TO BUDAPEST

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MY HUNGARIAN PARTNER EMI DERI

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STUDENT WELCOME IN THE AUDITORIUM

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THE SCHOOL’S CANTEEN. FOR SOME, THEIR FIRST CONTACT WITH DIFFERENT FOOD

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SOCIAL ACTIVITIES

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SOME FUN AT SCHOOL

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AND TIME TO SAY GOODBYE

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16TH – 21ST JUNE 2014

 AGAIN DEPARTURE TIME: HUNGARIAN GIRLS COME TO PORTO

WELCOMING CEREMONY WITH SCHOOL’S HEADMASTERS

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TIME TO WORK IN CLASS

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BIG SMILES THE WHOLE TIME

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SOCIAL ACTIVITIES

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INVOLVING PARENTS!

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AND SAYING GOODBYE…

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THEY SAY THEY HAD THE TIME OF THEIR LIVES.

I BELIEVE THEM.

😉

2014 in review – as the end of 2014 draws to an end, this is what wordpress has sent me!

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here's an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 600 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 10 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

Eduheroes- Is teaching a rewarding experience?

Teaching can be a daunting experience.

Portugal is going through hard times: unmotivation, lack of support and despair for many. The current teacher selection is made by applying to a nationwide program that selects your choices and places you in a school. No interview, no CV, no personal touch. It usually works. This year it was chaos. People going from North to South, others with no school to teach, one was even placed in 75 schools (!!??) simultaneously. Another had to leave home, embark on a new life 500km away just to find out 2 weeks later that she had to return to where she was before. She was unemployed after all!  It goes without saying that she had to move the whole family along with her. So, right now, there are still many schools with NO teachers yet and many teachers still waiting to know what will come up for their lives.

I’m not going through any of this and sometimes I feel discouraged. So my question is: how can these people find motivation to keep going?

A couple of years ago I had the chance to attend a teachers’ training course in Oxford, United Kingdom, and I can say that that has changed my professional life forever. Not because of the contents themselves (although they were excellent) but because it opened doors to meet wonderful, creative and inspiring people that I will never part from.

Through my teacher trainer at the time, Janet Bianchinni, I heard of Shelly Terrel for the first time and through her I learned about wonderful communities such as the 30 Goals Challenge for Educators, nearly finishing its 5th cycle now, and met wonderful people who I consider friends (or should I used Ary Aranguiz’s -whom I also met in a MOOC- ‘fraingers‘?).

I can never stop thanking Shelly for  being such a creative and inspiring Educator. She literally never stops. And just when you thing there’s nothing more she can come up with… you are soo wrong!!! She can!

And you know what? All her energy is contageous, as I read her talking about EduHeroes I find motivation to go on. If I don’t succeed being an EduHurricane as she is (no hurdles, no fear, no way to be stopped) I will try EduHeroeness.

Thanks for quoting me on slide 33. It means a lot. ❤

BYOD- 10 ways of using mobile devices in class

Via Edudemic

Here’s what I read today:

10 Ways To Use Mobile Devices in the Classroom

  1. Use as a research tool (for web-enabled devices)
  2. Snap a photo: Of notes on the board in class, of assignments, etc
  3. Use e-books and other digital materials as alternatives to lugging around tons of heavy books
  4. SMS Chat Room: Teachers can use free group messaging apps (there are a ton of them out there) to create group chat rooms for classes
  5. Share photos of field trips or projects either via aforementioned SMS chat rooms or via a blog or app
  6. Darn! Google has shut down the SMS messaging service mentioned in number 6 of this graphic
  7. Use smartphones as mobile diaries: Set reminders, make notes, and organize schedules using a variety of free apps and tools that often come loaded on the device
  8. Track student behavior
  9. Call a friend: Connect with guest speakers or other classrooms via skype
  10. Scan QR codes for a scavenger hunt, or use them as a reference point for assignments and projects

So glad that I’ve used all of them with my students!

21st century skills? Just give them back their crayons!

I must say they can be extremely creative and I’m lucky to be working with wonderful students who make wonderful things. How rewarding this can be and how easy it is to make it happen!

When pupils are given the chance to explore their most inner creative side, they come up with the most incredible things. And believe me, you don’t even have to guide them! Just let them make PBL Projects and you’ll be amazed.

Here’s what I usually do:

Once I’ve assigned them the task, after it is well explained and the guidelines understood, I tell them that the final product can be presented in any way they like. I tell them to surprise me and usually give one or two examples of how I had been  surprised in the past. By giving them real examples of colleagues and assuring that I was happy with the result, I show them that whatever they choose to do will be welcome, with no restraints, as long as they follow the Project’s guidelines and answer the Driving Question (DQ). You have the same DQ for all groups however you never get the same approach and the way they answer it is clearly different.

There’s still a lot of polemic surrounding this kind of projects as the most conservative still believe that we should be teaching them as we did 20 years ago regardless the changes the world has faced, namely the appearance of internet and web tools. Learn by doing is still regarded as poorly academical and therefore not suitable for a more in-depth academical approach. How wrong they are.

Recently, I had the opportunity to talk to one of my students’ mother. According to her, the school was following the wrong path by allowing students to do such projects instead of doing, and quote: “real tests“. She also included as a reference argument the fact that it must be boring for Ss to be listening to the same thing over and over again (as they share the same task…).

How wrong she is.

I spent 1h and a half trying to convince her that 21st century skills are way too different from what they were in our time, that students need to have other competences rather than academical knowledge, namely: problem-solving; critical thinking; collaboration and, of course, creativity. I even gave her some links for webinars and videos.

I’m pretty sure she wasn’t happy with my arguments. Saddly, she is a language teacher too…

Anyway, this is what the Language Department of my school did last term:

12th graders’ activity was based on ART.

#1 I had the students sit in groups of 3

#2 They had to answer the Driving Question by following the Project guidelines:

 How responsible is Art for the identity of a people?

They could use whatever means they felt confortable with and some of them really invested in creativity as they produced amazing performances while developping their language skills.

This is just one of the ways they found to answer this question:

Give them back their crayons’ is the motto of  one of the most  inspiring educators I have the chance to know and now, fortunetely, work with: Arjana Blazic. I intend to follow her motto and make sure my students are free to make excellent use of their crayons!

For all that matters, I love to colour life!

❤   ❤   ❤    ❤   ❤

Can they speak or what?

My misfortune is that I do not have the time to update my blog as frequently as I wanted. Everytime I have a lesson worth mentioning I keep reminding myself that I have to come here and blog about  it but then something comes up and 2 months go by without me noticing it.

Precisely 2 months ago I used Kieran Donaghy‘s lesson plan SOULMATE. what a success! The lesson is beautifully planned and the students just loved it. In the end, I promoted a debate on whether soulmates do exist, or not.

#1 I had the class divided in two

#2 They were randomly chosen to be FOR or AGAINST the existence of Soulmates

The result was fantastic:

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Although the sound might not be great the content is!

 

St Valentine’s

And this is how we celebrated Valentine’s day:

 

#1 we used this to create a sentence step by step:

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#2 Then we wrote the sentence and displayed it on the classroom real wall:

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#3 Finally we displayed it on our  virtual wall:

 

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