Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Review of week 7

Review of week 7:

Week 7 was also full of knowledge through the texts links available on 'Building Teacher Skills Through the Interactive Web' but the matter of pity is that I couldn't give much time on Internet Classroom Assistant (ICA) for reading and commenting this week as well because I suddenly had to go out of the city for a few busy days. The bad thing for me was that I couldn't reply to Robert's comment that he made on my post on Nicenet.

Because I went out of the city on Thursday, I had managed to read and write something for the week. But it was all because of Robert's encouragement. I was not in condition to continue the course because of my hectic schedule of works. I was going to quit but it was Robert who encouraged me to continue.

I thank him for his greatness. 

Use of computer in class

Use of computer in class:

The goal of using computer in the class is to help ESL teachers help students use computers as a tool to further their acquisition of English.
According to Barry Bakin, the computer is a good way to reinforce information, add an interactive element to a lesson, or provide varied activities which meet the learning styles of different students.
We have to focus on Pre-use of computer, While use of computer, and post use of computer.

From the presentation given by Donna Ashmus at (http://www.seirtec.org/present/onecomptr.html) I came to know about the

7 Categories of Classroom Computer Use:
1. Administrative Tool
2. Presentation tool
3. Communication station
4. Information station
5. Publishing tool
6. Learning center
7. Simulation center

for both teachers and students. It's really very nice. I enjoyed learning new things.

One Computer Lesson

One Computer Lesson:
We were asked to create a sample activity for a one-computer classroom to share making sure that we include who the students are, when in the lesson you're using the activity, the behavioral objective (ABCD format), and why technology will make the activity more effective.

What I had posted on Nicenet:
Hi Robert and all,

I will use educational CDs/ DVDs and internet as administrative tool (condition) to engage the students in learning English culture who are of Intermediate Level age between 19 to 23 (audience) from which they will watch, discuss what they like while I pause at each level (behavior) and after the activity is over I will give them the written texts of one or two parts so that they realize the level of their understanding and be able to reply some of the questions confidently (degree).

The technology will make the activity more effective because teaching and learning with same methods may be monotonous for the students. Technology, in making the students more active and our teaching more effective, works like spice to change our taste.

Deep, Nepal
What Robert said:
  • FROM: Robert Elliott
    SUBJECT: RE: One Computer Lesson

    Hi Deep

    Interesting use of the "DVD/CDs and internet". I guess I'd like to know a bit more about the listening: what is the topic, what does it cover, how many listening chances will they have and how many times can they listen to each, etc. That would help me see what you are doing a bit more clearly.

    As far as you ABCD objective, I wonder if your main goal is to have them discuss what they like (listed under behavior) or have them reply to the questions of the written text (listed under degree). To me these are both possible behaviors, so the objective might be reformulated to show us which one is your main goal.

I got a bit upset when I found the comment of Robert after I came back from Kathmandu after a few days (on Tuesday). Sorry again, Robert!

Learner Autonomy

What Is Learner Autonomy and How Can It Be Fostered? by Dimitrios Thanasoulas

It was very nice to learn about "What is Learner Autonomy and How Can it Be fostered?" by Dimitrios Thanasoulas on (http://iteslj.org/Articles/Thanasoulas-Autonomy.html) that autonomy is 'the ability to take charge of one's learning'. The term autonomy has come to be used in at least five ways:

·         for situations in which learners study entirely on their own;
·         for a set of skills which can be learned and applied in self-directed learning;
·         for an inborn capacity which is suppressed by institutional education;
·         for the exercise of learners' responsibility for their own learning;
·         for the right of learners to determine the direction of their own learning.

In my opinion, it would be very difficult for almost all of us to encourage greater autonomy in students without technology.

Within the context of education, there seem to be seven main attributes characterising autonomous learners:
1.      Autonomous learners have insights into their learning styles and strategies;
2.      take an active approach to the learning task at hand;
3.      are willing to take risks, i.e., to communicate in the target language at all costs;
4.      are good guessers;
5.      attend to form as well as to content, that is, place importance on accuracy as well as appropriacy;
6.      develop the target language into a separate reference system and are willing to revise and reject hypotheses and rules that do not apply; and
7.      have a tolerant and outgoing approach to the target language.

I also learnt about 'Learner Autonomy and Dominant Philosophies of Learning'

In this section, I found three dominant approaches to knowledge and learning.
1. Positivism is premised upon the assumption that knowledge reflects objective reality.
2. Constructivism is an elusive concept and, within applied linguistics, is strongly associated with Halliday. As Candy observes, '[o]ne of the central tenets of constructivism is that individuals try to give meaning to, or construe, the perplexing maelstrom of events and ideas in which they find themselves caught up'.
3. Critical theory, an approach within the humanities and language studies, shares with constructivism the view that knowledge is constructed rather than discovered or learned. 

I also found there two learning strategies: a) Cognitive Strategies and b) Metacognitive Strategies.

The text is very informative.