Thursday, August 27, 2015

Webskills Online Course – Week 10

Today`s Friday the 28-th, 2015. It is the last day of the course and I feel myself so embarrassed and perplexed because I got used to the daily checking my E-mail and going to the school computer classroom almost everyday during those hot summer ten weeks. I have enjoyed a lot reading my peers` discussions and comments, looking at their resourses. The course-participants are very diligent and hard-working teachers one can ever find nearby, so I am so lucky and happy to be among these wonderful people for ten weeks !!!!
For not to be verbose and sound proofless, I must say that all the topics and tools were successful, useful and relevant. I am twice happy that all the Web tools have worked for me with my slow connection to the Internet. All the tasks and assignments were well planned and designed that they have bucked up me and didn`t allow to drag my feet. In general, the whole course is like a shot in the arm and so, all the knowledge gained will stead me much in the future work. I`ll suggest to try the tools like Voxopop and Voicethread to improve the listening and the oral speech, they wouldn`t work well for me though.
In whole, the course is great and helpful for all the EFL teachers, I am so grateful for the organizers -  University of Oregon | American English Institute | eTeacher Program Webskills - Course Website. Thank you!!!!

Thursday, August 20, 2015

Webskills Online Course – Week 9

I think we all had and still are having the most challenging week passing by! To write any project or plan like any other document is and has been the challenge for me through all my teaching experience. I must confess, I used to be a very slow student in my university years and the slowness in the young learning years had affected on my teaching career afterwards. Now I know that I have to love writing, it results well in planning, that finishes in project making etc.
I liked the idea of peer-feedbacking, Ali-Sher was my partner and we have exchanged our feedbacks very nicely. He gave me much advice and so, I think I gave him a not-so-bad feedback as well.
I enjoyed the Week 9 Reading a lot! Especially fantastic knowledge I have taken from the articles “Gardner’s Multiple Intelligences” and “Richard M. Felder`s learning styles and strategies”. Things described are real-world and as I assert, every teacher has to know about the multiple intelligences and the strategies how to manage one`s classes and lesson plans. I couldn`t retain and acquire well enough the last, most perhaps important article called “Learning strategies” because it is too academically written for me, I am not the University professor.
Then, we all have been handed the Survey and I have sent it quickly back. It goes without saying, I love this course and there is no reason to make a secret of it. The course is terrific and fantastic!!! That`s all!

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Webskills Online Course – Week 8

Despite I am not that young  and have the long-termed teaching experience I have been at odds with the various sorts of the documentation through my whole life. I always have a rough time writing my lesson plans and making the curriculum. And now, in Week 8 I had to write my draft plan report and then, (Oh, My God!) to give my feedback to my course-peer!!! And everything in English, moreover, in American English! Wasn`t it thrilling?
Nonetheless, I seemed to be survived and have sent all the material needed to the course-wiki. But it is early to think that I have pulled through in the crunch. There is no a feedback from Ali Sher so far, my partner on the plan report checking and then I don`t know yet what Donna will decide.
After I have just written my draft plan, having spent the whole day on it, the next day I had to check my partner`s report. And here I had a great fun! It turned out to be not so bad, checking other person`s work !And evaluating it according the rubric! I found it amazing! I am not that skilled master of the documenting but it was easier for me to evaluate one`s document following the rubric.
I had a challenge making my own online and offline exercises. The technological tools are terrific and easy-to-use but they aren`t so flexible because of my slow Internet. Some tools didn`t work for me, then. I have found out some tools that are easy-to-do and powerful at the same time. I mean the Flashcardsmaker tool, Wordsearchmaker tool, generally, the Lakeshore tool is the best for me. . I have tried the Web Poster Wizard and even did one but I didn`t catch the idea what to do with it.
I have supposedly created the so-called Class-Blog and the Class-Padlet. I say it ironically because they are blank and empty for now. I have simplн gained the skills how to make them only but of course, in future I`ll use it in real-life. The blog, Padlet and the flash-cards will be used in my Grammar lessons for the 7-8-9 graders initially but then, afterwards, with having got more experience working on the technological tools I and all my students will use the Web and non-Web- tools in other activities of learning language skills.
The slowness of my Internet doesn`t make it possible to check all the tools and to create some more. I always envy those who live in the towns and cities where the Internet is so fast and quick.
Well, there is nothing to do then, we simply have to live our lives on the places where the Fortune has dropped us down.

Friday, August 7, 2015

Webskills Online Course – Week 7

The material written in the articles of Week 7 is very necessary and useful because the learner`s autonomy, one-computer-class and the mobile-phones are available especially in my case. How right and precise is Robert Godwin-Jones (Virginia Commonwealth University) while defining  the autonomous language learning “that developing learner autonomy … necessitates helping the student develop the skills and mindset that can lead to successful self-guided language study”. Then, definitely, this article seems to be about our on-line course when we are all the aunonomous learners and Donna is our teacher and when she offers and suggests various technological tools to try and when the act of choosing to use the great number of Web  gadgets and widgets  leads to deeper mental processing that promotes language acquisition.

“Moving students to the point where they will take advantage of feedback and comprehension aids involves enhancing their metacognitive knowledge about language learning. If they can learn how to build on existing knowledge, how to profit from errors, how to examine more closely the forms they are using, this can only have a salutary effect on their language ability and on their capacity for autonomous learning” – Great Idea!

The technology of a one-computer classroom and/or mobile devices will make the activity effective as it will boost students' confidence and motivation, students will be autonomous learners because they have to analyze when they work on the PowerPoint tasks and while they are writing down the sentences, doing Web-exercises and taking pictures.

ABCD Objective:
After having read the class-assignment at the PowerPoint and done some exercises given (C), then, having worked on the computer to train with Irregular Verbs in the Web (C), the students (A), write down the sentences similar to those they have seen in the Internet exercises on the paper and take pictures of the written by using the Camera feature on their mobile phones, send them into my computer to make me show up immediately in a PowerPoint presentation (B) with a passing score of at least 90% (5 correct sentences) according to the annotated bibliography rubric/scoring guide (D).

As far as the “Week 7 - Project Task #6 – Find a Partner” is concerned, I don`t want to impose myself on somebody and to be a burden instead of the fruitful collaboration, because , I am not that cutting-edge teacher and can`t be a beneficial partner, so I`d like to be assigned by Donna.

Saturday, August 1, 2015

Webskills Online Course – Week 6

More and more new stock of skills have replenished my Store of Knowledge during this passing Week 6. First I thought there was the huge number of the Readings but then it turned out to choose one topic  of two. I chose the topic on PPT. And it worth it because Donna has complimented me for my first Interactive PowerPoint  presentation and even gave me the Gold Star!!! So, I  am very happy to get it, thank you very much, dear Donna!!!
As I see, everybody are the masters of PPT and there are really the fantastic presentations with all the interactive techniques included. It is true that breaking up the lecture with these techniques not only provides format change to engage students, these activities allow students to immediately apply content and provides feedback to the instructor on student.
First I faced this technique some 15 years ago, when I was on the International English Language Teachers` conference in Yakutsk, our capital town. The American lecturer used just these  very techniques while delivering his lecture. And indeed, we weren`t drowsing as we usually do during the long, monotonous speaches,  but were actively engaged in the process of a lecture and interacted with the content, lecturer, and with other participants.
I admit that Powerpont is an easy-to-use presentation tool but with all these interactive techniques a teacher  reinforces his/her lessons in engaging intellectually and simultaneously involving students as active participants in a lecture-based class of any size.