This is my blog about teaching & learning languages, edtech, parenting, plus my quest to share lessons about where all three meet. I'll also reserve the right to blog about sports too, from a cultural perspective.
Language teachers want to show their students the world. Through language, literature, song and film, we take students on journeys every day. Some teachers and students are lucky to have the opportunity to travel abroad, but I tell my students and colleagues that smart teaching and savvy tech integration can augment realities in ways we have never seen before. Below I’ll describe a project that took my students around the work in one period and took me deeper into the Arts and Media Center than I have ever been before. It is a spin on the traditional PowerPoint presentation about Spanish-speaking countries; however in this case, we put a modern spin on it!
1) Students researched Spanish-speaking countries and wrote a script as if they were nationals. They focused on the following questions to underscore the structures we had studied.
¿De dónde eres?
¿Cómo es el país?
¿Qué comes? ¿Qué bebes?
¿Cómo es el clima? ¿Tienes frío/calor?
Más verbos -er, -ir + expresiones con TENER
2) They shared and edited those and fed them into the teleprompter when they were ready. We used www.cueprompter.com/They searched Creative Common Public Domain photos from Pixabay.
3) With a bit of help from my colleagues in the arts and AV, we put together a studio to film the presentations. We did a bunch of takes and I strung the best ones together, blooper reel and all.
4) I did a crash course on green screening in iMovie. The most useful tutorial I found was this one from David A. Cox. I’m learning on the go through some post production. The Travel theme works amazingly well for this type of project. I have also started to experiment with DoInk! Their product is more stripped down than iMovie, but it could be better for student generated films. For this project, I have done all the post-production.
I’ve already begun to talk with some colleagues in and out of language about how we could adapt a project like this to different levels and disciplines. Shakespeare in the Globe theater? Traveling through time? Travelling through a cell? Historical reenactments? News reports on local, national or international events?