Home > No. 59 Video for Speaking; Reading; Families

No. 59 Video for Speaking; Reading; Families (2010年06月10日)

カテゴリー: The Treasure Hunt Club
As with any large organization, LET has many members, each with his or her own
unique professional situation. That is the challenge of writing this column. This month I have decided to break up the content into categories in the hopes of maybe better matching the content to possible users.

University Speaking/Listening
First up is an activity that illustrates how you can use video you find on the web to
stimulate speaking in class. The video site Vimeo (http://vimeo.com/) is a great source for videos. They allow only non-commercial, original video and feature a lot of really creative stuff. Using the short clips in class as a launching point for a speaking task is nice way to organize a lesson. Here is one video that might work for this. Steven Nicholas Smith has posted a video he made in Philadelphia (http://vimeo.com/11527784).
Basically, he interviewed people on the street by asking them to complete a simple sentence :
"I am ________." You could have learners watch the 6-minute clip and then finish the sentence themselves and share their sentences and explanations with their classmates. Please visit the site and check out some of the amazing video content. I'm sure you'll get some ideas for your classes.

University Reading
Reading faster is an important part of reading more fluently. The web is full of great timers (my favorite is the bomb countdown timer at http://www.online-stopwatch.com/bomb-countdown/) but using them requires students to select a text, paste it into Word, count the number of words, and then start the timer. The result is they know their reading speed. But how can they go faster?
Recently, I came across Spreeder (http://www.spreeder.com/app.php) a deceptively simple yet powerful tool in speed reading training. What it does is it "feeds" you your text (in words, or chunks, you decide) at the speed you choose. If you want to try to read at basic native speed, select 180 words per minute.
If you are training yourself to read faster, adjust the speed. You can also get Spreeder to open on the web page of your choice using the Bookmarklet function. This is very much a bottom-up training tool
so it would be best used as one part of a total reading training program.

Senior and Junior High School
The family lesson: it is a common feature in many, many textbooks. Instead of just having learners draw their family tree, you can get them to make a digital version at Geni (http://www.geni.com/).
You can turn the classroom lesson into the beginning of a multimedia family project. The family tree diagrams made there are private and you can choose who you want to share them with. If you have a computer with a projector in your class, this could make for a very nice show-and-tell lesson.

Mobile Learners
And finally some news. For users of Quizlet and owners of an iPhone or iPod Touch. The Quizlet vocabulary learning tool's application is called Wow! Flashcard Touch. It is easy to find at the app store. Take your vocabulary with you.

That's all for this month. See you next month.