Sunday, January 29, 2012

Tools for Listening


More Fun & Fruits

Again and again, I started the third week so late.I try to catch up all the wonderful things my colleagues have done. Week 3 deals with one of the most important skills that we should give it more attention in our EFL classrooms. My students have no input to listen to the English language except for their teachers' voices in their classrooms. Thus, as an EFL teacher, I search all the time for tools and authentic materials that can help my students develop their listening skills, but in a funny way. I just want my students feel happy while learning. Really, this course provides me a lot of tools and treasures that can help me to achieve my goal. Let's know what I have learned during this week.

Objectives of Week 3:

During this week, participants will:

  • have an overview of online tools that can be used to develop learners' listening skills.
  • choose, at least, two online tools that might be used for listening skills and compare them.
  • share their findings with the group.


Week 3 Tasks:

Task 1  Listening Treasure Hunt:



In this task, we were asked to find a hidden listening treasure by clicking on some images in just 30 minutes, then, take notes on what sites/resources I found interesting, their advantages and drawbacks. Actually, our moderators provided us with 12 images and gave us 30 minutes to do so. Really, I liked the idea of the alarm clock. It makes me be concentrated and wanted to find something at the end. 


Task 2  Listening Review:  


During this task, we were asked to share our listening treasures with our colleagues in our Edmodo group. To be frank, I found a very baby listening treasure. You know, I try to find something interesting, funny and suitable for my students' levels. I clicked almost all images, but No. 10 extremely attracted my attention and interest. It is Wordia is a games-based learning resource and video dictionary, which brings words and meaning to life. At the heart of the site is a powerful search engine. You can type in a word that you are exploring in class and it will find as many resources as it can! The search results will include the dictionary definition of that word and, where available, videos that explore the word and its pedagogy. They also include some games which feature the word in a teaching capacity. If there are no games or videos for the exact word, similar words will be shown instead. For example, the search term for 'sea' would also find words about 'ocean' and 'lake'. 

Advantages & Drawbacks: 

One of the drawbacks of this website is that there might not be a video for every word your class is using. In this case, you can encourage your students to explore the meaning of that word, and upload it to the site so that other students may learn from it. Also, I think that it is not suitable for higher levels like high school students. However, it includes a lot of words and videos that can be used by my students. However, I'm sure that my students will love learning by videos. They can listen to the correct pronunciation of words and see pictures that can identify them. All what I think about this website is that my students will learn new vocabulary in a funny way watching videos or playing games. It is a great fun. 

Starting task 3 , I found that 30 minutes are not enough to explore a hidden treasure. Thus, I decided to give myself extra time to know more tools and websites that can enhance my students' listening skills. I will talk about a mixture of two tools in the next post.

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