Thursday, 1 December 2011

Make a difference with mailVU


With this, you can send free video email to your friends, family, teachers or anyone for FREE!

This is website where you can easily learn to make a video. No complicated instructions or button. Just a click away and you're ready to make your own video.

In English language learning, fluency in spoken and written English is essential. It is also important for motivation. Therefore, speaking activity is necessary in language learning and choosing the right methods is crucial.

Usually speaking activity only can be done in the classroom. But now, not anymore!
Because I'm going to make use of this fantastic tool; mailVU.

How I want to use it?

Speaking activity

For example:

Students talk about the important years or dates in their life. First, you may wanna write the important years in your life and talk about it as an example. Then, ask students to make a timeline about the important event in their life and let them talk about it in pairs.

Other possible ideas:

- Talk about the object that's important to them. e.g. a ring.
- Cooking show.
- Talk about their special talent and they may teach others on how to do it. e.g. sewing, cross stitch, playing guitar.
- Act as a promoter and promote something. e.g. cosmetic product.

This activity can be done in the classroom and as a homework.

Here is where mailVU come to the rescue!
This tool contribute to the new idea for homework. Now speaking activity not only can be done in the classroom but also at home.

I'll ask my students to record themselves and talk about the particular topic that they already done with their friend in the class. Then ask them to send it to me via email.

Once I receive the mail, I'll just simply click on the link and watch the video. I'll listen to them speaking  and make some notes. Then I'll give them feedback using the video or maybe attachment by click on the Reply button.


1) Encourage students to speak the language. Not only during the classroom activity but also at home when they're doing their homework.

2) Connected classroom. Link the content they learn in the class with the homework. The interrelation of classroom activity and homework is important to enhance their understanding.

3) Make videos for free.

4) Personalising the topic in language learning to their interest.

Tuesday, 29 November 2011

Good Teachers Need Technology.

Adobe Connect

"... a web conferencing solution for web meetings. eLearning and webinars. It delivers exceptionally rich interactions......"

How this tool will be useful for language teaching?

I would use this tool as a revision session outside the classroom.
If fate decided that I'll be teaching in a well-equipped school with majority of the students have the internet connection at home. I would be happy to use this tool as a medium for discussion with my students. Maybe once a week.
In the discussion session, I will come out with the latest topic that we cover in the class. I bet it will be useful for students especially to those who don't really understand the lesson in the class.


Suppose one of your students has missed some lessons so you decide to give a catch up lesson. This tool may help you to arrange a replacement class for those who keen to learn what they've already missed.

How does it link to current idea about language teaching?

1) Captivate students with rich, engaging, and interactive experiences.

2) Possible in for anyone and anytime. Because this tool makes students available to virtually anyone, anywhere, on almost any device, with just a click of a button.

3) Assessible. Allow students to easily attend your virtual classroom without the need for additional downloads.

4) Enable rich, highly collaborative interactions between students and teacher.

5) One type of students that you may find in a class is 'the invisible'. So, this virtual discussion might be an advantage for them to express themselves. They may be quite shy and passive in a real classroom but active in a virtual discussion.


1) Not really appropriate to do all the time as a main lesson where you actually teaching a new knowledge to students.

2) You don't have eyes on the back of you head. You can't always monitor students at home. either they're actually actively participate in the discussion or playing around after they joined the discussion group.

3) The internet problem may hinder the progress of the discussion.

4) Cannot pass the power to control the cursor or discussion to others.

5) The only way to interact with the students is through the chat box. Sometimes you can't attend to all the questions and interactions.

Hello hello ellloenglish !!!

Look at the red arrow:

This tool is divided into 5 sections: VIEWS, MIXER, GAMES, VIDEOS and NEWS
When you click on Mixer there're 2 more sections you can get: SONGS and POINTS.

There're one more feature which is SCENES as shown below:

You can see 3 tabs:
1) Transcript
2) Audio Slide Show - you can turn on the text to get the subtitles
3) Audio Notes where you can click on the highlighted word to hear the pronunciation of the word and how it's used in a sentence.

You may download the audio and do the quizzes as well.

How I would use this tool?

Easy peasy lemon squeezy! I would simply use this for listening activities.
This tool can suit my secondary school students at all level depends on how I'm going to use it.

There're a lot of topics you can choose but I will make some adjustment for the activities or maybe adding more activities for students.

The website will be my favorable source for any listening sources.

How is this tool underpinned by current understanding of language learning?

1) Can hear variety of accents spoken by people all over the world.

2) Authentic materials: Using the real English that we hear on the street.

4) Personalising the learning to students' interest. Important to motivate students.

5) Develop listening skills - Loads of listening activities (audio + transcript).
Most importantly, it not only provide the audio for listening but create the reason for listening as well that will create the reason for students to communicate and talk about the topic.

6) Variety of topics - world & cross cultural knowledge

As in the picture above: The topic is about Korean Family. Students can listen to the audio and do the exercise while learning about other culture as well.
Kill two birds with one stone!

7) Promote autonomous learning - a good autonomous learner will look at other way to learn English and this tool will be one of the best choice.

8) Language learning is skill-based. This tool has variety of skills: writing, reading, vocabulary and listening.

9) Extract language from the context. Learning language while learning other stuff as well. (Content and language integrated learning; CLIL)

10) Let students to gauge their level. Good learners will always reflect themselves.


1) The organisation of the main page is quite messy and confusing.

2) The website can be easily corrupted. Especially when lot of people using this webpage simultaneously.

3) The video provided not really helpful and interesting.