Specialization Course Lic.
Martín Ulises Aparicio November 2009
Use of Technology in the ESL/EFL Classroom
What is Technology?
What is ICT?
Information and communication technologies (ICT) is an umbrella term that covers all technical means for processing and communicating information. While this technically encompasses pre-digital technologies, including paper-based writing, it is most often used to describe digital technologies including methods for communication (communication protocols, transmission techniques, communications equipment, media,) as well as techniques for storing and processing information (computing, data storage, etc.)
Web Resources: - WebQuest-ThinkQuest
Theory: Parallel Text and Critical Thinking Reflective Journal and Metacognition TIC teaching for English Informational Society Blended Learning Technological standards for teacher, students, administrators Web 2.0 Resources CALL Content-Based Instruction Inquiry Methods ESL/EFL Methodology
- Cmaptools, - Podcast: Odeo, GoEar, Mind_Manager Podsonoro, lastFM. - Gimp - Colective Blogs - Audicity - e-portafolios - Skype - Rubrics (videoconference) - Chat - Hotpotato, LIM - Forums - Virtual classroom: Ninehub - Xelearning, Oogie site - Comic stripgenerator - Specialized Sites: yapper, - Goanimate esl_lab, - Snag-it, XnView 1.96.5 - Flicker, Stockphoto (photos) - Picture editor on line: - Youtube: BlipTV, Vimeo, pixer, Viary, Mediva Pixenate. - EduGoogle, Gmap, - Tutorials: Winkz Googlesites, - Webdesign: Sequitar, - Slidecasts: Slideshare.net, Scribd.com, Komposer, Rhubar. - Time line: Dipity.com, - Video Editor: Kino, - Storage: dropbox eXe, - Videoconference: Webex, - Reproductor: VLC, - Survey: encuestafacil.com - Create videos: Monkey - Brainstorming: Bubble.com Jam - Create video from pictures:
Teachers’ Roles and ICT
The digital age challenges teachers to use technology in ways that facilitate language learning. ESL/EFL teachers must decide how—and how not—to use technology in the classroom.
Purpose of Technology
It is becoming easier to equip students with technology. Bits (binary digits) can be used productively or unproductively in the ESL/EFL classroom. ESL/EFL teachers should achieve “bit literacy” (Hurst, 2007) because it would allow them to reclaim their classroom from any technology that interferes with English Language Teaching. Technical skills are no substitute for language skills. ESL/EFL students are empowered when teachers harness new technology in ways that promote language learning.
Warning about technology
There are no tech-miracles waiting for teachers when they go shopping for an ESL/EFL class. New technology can turn out to be a valuable resource or a disappointing failure. Teachers should not let the novelty of technology replace its real purpose in the ESL/EFL classroom. That purpose should be decided by ESL/EFL teachers, not by manufacturers of technology or publishers of software.
Productive Use of Technology
There are three strategies ESL/EFL teachers can follow to ensure that technology fits their needs. First, investigate new media to see if it is suitable for classroom use. Then identify how new media changes TESOL. Finally, set English Language Teaching objectives before selecting any tools of technology.
Investigate New Media
Colaric and Jonassen list three faulty assumptions that can entangle instruction in the Web:
That the World Wide Web is a vast library that can be used to convey knowledge. That searching and finding information on the Web equals learning. That hyperlinking is good instruction. (Bates, 2003, p. 198) Too much focus on the Web obscures the deeper processes of learning ESL/EFL. Sometimes teachers should “let the bits go” (Hurst, 2007, p. 167).
Identify How New Media Changes TESOL Scale, Pace and Pattern
Once ESL/EFL teachers identify the predecessor media within a new medium, they have a better grasp of how to implement the new medium, or if it should be implemented at all. PowerPoint did not pioneer the display of large print on a screen, but its bullet-point lists changed the pattern of print used on overhead projectors (OHP) from complete sentences into chunks that are formatted to appear and disappear quickly. E-mail introduced a rapid pace of message delivery, and E-mail’s scale has changed the delivery by allowing students and teachers to send to many contacts at once. The pace of text-messaging is speedier than e-mail, but the pattern of textmessaging shorthand hardly resembles English.
Set the Objectives before Selecting the Technology. Technology Contributes to Specific English Language Teaching Objectives
Setting English Language Teaching objectives before selecting the technology safeguards the objectives. For instance, identifying main ideas, listening for details, or giving opinions are three objectives that might work with a podcast, but English Language Teaching objectives should not be compromised to fit technology. Making students listen to a podcast just because it is a new medium diminishes any English Language Teaching objective added as an afterthought. Podcasts can allow students to share their opinions to a large audience using web based applications.
The Objective: English Language Teaching or Technology?
Effort, time and money can be invested or wasted in technology. Some ESL\EFL text books are sold to instructors with advertisements that promote gratuitous assistance, such as online programs, student websites, and online handbooks. Does all this technological assistance accomplish the teacher’s objective or has technological assistance become the objective?
References The Internet TESL Journal, Vol. XIV, No. 7, July 2008 http://iteslj.org/ http://iteslj.org/Articles/Morgan-Technology.html
Ellis, R. and Basturkmen, H. and Loewen, S. (2001). Preemptive Focus on Form in the ESL Classroom. TESOL Quarterly. 35 (3), 407-432. Retrieved May 2, 2008 from http://www.ingentaconnect.com/content/tesol/tq/2001/00000035/0000
Hurst, M. (2007). Bit Literacy. New York: Good Experience, Inc. Levinson, P. (1999). digital McLuhan. London: Routledge.
McLuhan, E and Zingrone, F. (1995). Essential McLuhan. New York: BasicBooks. Morgan, M. (2008). ESL Students See the Point of PowerPoint. Essential Teacher: Compleat Links. 5 (1). Retrieved June 30, 2008 from http://www.tesol.org/s_tesol/sec_document.asp?CID =319&DID=10652
en⋅com⋅pass –verb (used with object), to form a circle about; encircle; surround, to enclose; envelop, to include comprehensively. Harness: to bring under conditions for effective use; gain control over for a particular end: to harness water power; to harness the energy of the sun. Hyperlink: hy⋅per⋅link /haɪ pərlɪŋk/ to create hyperlinks in or to: an extensively hyperlinked document. Predecessor: (prɛd əsɛs ər)