A few days ago, I stepped outside of my normal internet activity as I looked around on a few EFL teacher blogs.
After my few minutes online yesterday outside my regular path of places I go online, it was like I discovered a whole new planet. I mean seriously . . . I thought I did a pretty good job of keeping up with online stuff. But, OH MY WORD!
It gets overwhelming all the places you can go and things you can do and archives you can explore and conversations you can be a apart of. For someone who likes finality and closure and to be able to say "I read the whole book" . . . the world wide web is a very overwhelming place if you ever tread off the beaten path.
Here are few of the random places I "discovered" that could be used in helping students use English to express themselves online . . . (and just a little disclaimer, surf at your own risk . . . I've not used any of these sites at length. I just discovered them and think they might be interesting to use with my students who are learning English, so I wanna check them out some more.)
gloster.com: poster yourself (looks like a teen thing that mixes photos, words, music to create "posters" for "self-expression")
amap: visual argument maps built on "informal logic"
pixton.com: make your own online comics
bubblr: another online comic maker but using photos from flickr. here is one I made using my own photos about gilby in just a matter of minutes. :) This could be used in SO MANY ways by both teachers and students.
piclits.com: an interactive word and picture application (from the about page: "a creative writing site that matches beautiful images with carefully selected keywords in order to inspire you. The object is to put the right words in the right place and the right order to capture the essence, story, and meaning of the picture.") Here's one I created in just a matter of minutes.
See the full PicLit at PicLits.com
bubbl.us: brainstorm in clusters online (could be used for actual brainstorming or for creating word webs)
bombaytv: students can add subtitles to short clips that are filmed in a "foreign language" (this is one I worry about maybe not being all clean. I watched a handful, and the ones I saw were ok.)
xtranormal.com: is an online application that allows non-movie makers to make movies. with text-to-type technology and a few creative choices, teachers could create short converstaions that use vocab or ask students to create their own movies. Intonation is a bit weird, but could be fun to use to peak motiviation
shahi: self-described as a visual dictionary that combines Wiktionary content with Flickr images, and more!
And of course there is wordle (that I've seen around before on other blogs). That can be used in really cool ways in the classroom too. (Preview or review the vocab in an article, have students create one based on something they are working on or learning about or reading, create one to use as a conversation starter or a writing prompt.)
Yeah . . and that's just the TIP of the ice berg!!
Anyone else recently discover other "new" sites that could be used to promote langauge learning or know of any other sites that could be exploited for their English teaching purposes?