Thursday, June 26, 2008

Digital Stories

Can you guess what this means? Just think of the workds: Digital Stories. Discuss possible meanings with your classmates.

Here is an example of a digital story created by one of my students, Robert. He interview Djimi, whom you met earlier this semester (and whose podcast I'm about to publish in Let's Talk).
Another short one is Salsa Lesson, from the end of the year party.
You'll find more in Sydney's People Podcast (Nikki & Carol), wher I added the recorded interviews to photos and bits of video.

There are many good examples of digital stories on the web. Here are some links to tutorials and examples (sorry but some of the links don't work, but they are not mine, so I can't fix them):

Stephan's wiki page has brilliant examples and tutorials (including guides by Robyn Jay, who gave us a fantastic workshop some time ago)
Creating the Connections, a fantastic digital stories resource kit for literacy
Digital Stories with Gail Casey
Teaching Visual Literacy is an interview with Martin Scorsese (script included) where he talks about the role of visual literacy (advanced students).
Digital Story Telling-CAP

Let's do it now!

  • In your computers go to Programs/PhotoStories 3. I'll show you how to use it. It's easy and lots of fun!

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Recording your own voice

Today you worked very hard recording your voices in Audacity

You can download Audacity and lame at home. It's a good way of practising your pronunciation. Maybe you can open one of the listening exercises from Time4English or Splendid Speaking and repeat sentence by sentence. Then compare your recording to the original, until you are happy with it.

  • Here are some instructions on what to do. You just need to do the first 5 steps. If you want to publish it online, save your mp3 file in your computer and then go to esolf2f wiki and upload it onto your personal page in student pages. This is Min's one.

  • If you want to become an expert on podcasting (subscribing to podcasts or producing your own podcasts), go to Stephan Ridgway's Introduction to Podcasting.

Go to Let's Talk to listen to your podcast about Everyone's a Winner! or simply click on the screen below.

Have a great holiday and have lots of fun practising your pronunciation!

Monday, June 16, 2008

Last Session

My creation
Collage of my photos created by flickr

Hi everyone,

This is our very last computer session for the semester. I have enjoyed working with you tremendously and I hope you have learnt something from working with blogs, podcasts, slide shows (bubble share), voicethread, our esolf2f wiki, Time4English, the forum, etc.

The main thing is that you now know that there are lots of materials on the Internet that you can use to practise your English. Keep using Our Class 2008 if you wish. Send me emails if you want or write in comments.

It'd be terrific if you kept your blogs running. You can publish anything you like about yourself, your new courses, excursions, trips, movies, etc.
  • Today we are going to record a 1-2 minute speech on "Everyone's a winner". On your computer left bottom corner, click on Programs and then on Audacity. It's very easy to use this program to record your voice. You will need a pair of headphones with microphone. If yo need me I'll I'll show you how to do it.
  • Do it several times until you are happy with your pronunciation, fluency and intonation. Then export as mp3. Save it on the desktop, so that you can find it easily.
  • Email it to yourself as an attachment and send me a copy.
  • Now work with a classmate and interview each other about what you'd do if you won a big amount of money on the lottery. Save it as an mp3 and email it to each other and myself. I will try to publish it on our podcast, Let's Talk.
  • Some of you are looking for a job and will need to prepare a resume (also know as CV, from Curriculum Vitae, Latin for Life's , Go to Time4English Level 6, and then ADVANCED BUSINESS & ACADEMIC. There click on 2G, Resume (listening, reading and grammar). It will help you get started with a good basic resume.
  • More advice on resume writing can be found in this Australian website, my career. They also have some samples: IT professional resume, a production professional resume. You'll find advice and resume templates (models with different layouts)
  • Check out Sally's website for information about volunteering, interviews, etc. It's like a board game with links to relevant sites.
  • Finally the Centrelink website is full of information for job seekers.

Have a good holiday and I'll see you around!

Thursday, June 12, 2008

Aussie Slang & Pathways

Matt is going to help you add to our 101 Health Hints (dental, back, footwear, etc). We're nearly there (81! 20 to go).

  • Read Suzanne's post about being Australian and write your opinion in the forum. You can also elaborate on it an publish it in your blog.
  • If you click on her "Typical Aussie" link, you can listen to a very popular song, Home Among the Gum Trees, by John Williamson. You may have to do this at home if the link doesn't work at TAFE. Here is the lyrics (the words of a song).
Aussie Slang

Find the meaning of these Aussie slang words in the Aussie Dictionary:

  • chuck a wobbly
  • ratbag
  • sanger
  • flat out


Part of our pathway session last week included EFS and Comms. Today we are going to do a bit more listening and thinking about those courses.

  1. Listen to Suzanne, the EFS coordinator

  2. Listen to Jennifer, one of the Comms teachers. The flyers are a bit old, but basically the information about the course is very similar to the current one.

  3. Write a summary of both courses (EFS & Comms) in your blog.
  • Finally, here are some exercises that will help you practise your tag questions (very useful for casual conversation), they're/their/there and conjunctions (very useful for more formal speech, like oral presentations or writing, like reports, opinions, etc).

Monday, June 2, 2008

Casual Conversation

I'm afraid I published some of this post by mistake last week. It was meant to be work for this week. Sorry!

    We are going to prepare for our casual conversation assessment. Please revise the following points:
    1. the language of agreeing and disagreeing
    2. the structure of an anecdote
    3. practise different ways of giving feedback
    4. Opening and closing the conversation in a polite way

  • To help you with content (what to say) for your casual conversation assessment, go to VILC Know your Consumer rights and choose a different topic per student. Use the story as an anecdote inside your casual conversation.

  • To improve your conversational skills, it's important to pay attention to your pronunciation. You can do it at home on the weekend. Check this website: Pronunciation with Alanna. Alanna Townsend, from Griffith TAFE, has recorded pronunciation lessons for her students on her blog, Griffith English News, visit it an do some of the exercises at home.
  • Finally, we are getting closer to our target of 101 health hints. Did you see anything last week at the Health Expo that we could include? For example, anything related to dental health, massages, women's health, mental health, diet, etc.

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