Sunday 24 January 2010

Making the most of your PLN

How much do I love my Personal Learning Network or PLN? Quite a lot, actually, to put it mildly. They are a constant source of friendship and support, as much as my 'real' friends, if not moreso in my teaching career, given that they are facing the same challenges and issues as me, day in, day out. But also, they push my boundaries and move me willingly outside my comfort zone in terms of the practical application of ICT to my teaching and the pupils' learning.
A small yet hopefully hugely benficial example is the idea of using Audacity to record questions and then get pupils to record their answers and upload them to our wiki I read about this on the forum of the MFL Resources yahoo group, and also on Joe Dale's blog This should prove especially beneficial to KS4 pupils studying for their GCSE, but is equally applicable both down and up the school. I particularly like the impact it should have on pronunciation, which should help with the new GCSE.

A final thought on this area is to also bring our new digital voice recorders into the classroom if we can't make it to a computer room. I am going to trial using the fruit machine from to bring up a random series of questions which pupils will then answer in one minute on the DVRs. This will be a long-term plan, and I am interested to see what rewards we reap.
Another idea I picked up from one of my Twitter friends is to condense your life down to 50 words, either orally or as in this tweet, written.

1 comment:

ajep said...

Nice Post. I used the classtools name picker with my Y12s last year for speaking practice. Rather than a question, I had topics (in the target language) and the students had to speak for a minute on the topic that came up (e.g. favourite subjects, family or favourite holiday). The students enjoyed the challenge of coming up with things on the spot (though they were topics they had prepared). I will probably try it this year with younger classes and put in questions.
Thanks again,
Andrew J