Thursday, July 31, 2008

Whoopee! Big Success With Student Downloads!

It finally happened! A student with a Nokia phone with mp3 capability asked how he could save the mp3 files of me reading one of the stories to his phone so he could listen to them outside of the classroom! Here he is downloading the mp3 files from the class wiki to his phone!

Saturday, July 26, 2008

Visualize Student Writing (or any writing) Artistically Using Wordle!

Wordle is a clever new website (free)that lets you create artistic "word clouds" of any selected text or website. I'm not sure exactly how I'll use it in the ESL classroom but it's a lot of fun and beautiful too! Basically, you paste text or a URL into the site and it creates the word clouds automatically based on the frequency of the words appearing in the selected text. Here's one I made from one of my student's paragraphs.

As I said above, it's very artistic but I'm not sure about it's educational content! Any ideas? Is just doing it and displaying the text sufficient as a classroom activity? Perhaps it's enough to utilize simply as a motivational tool to get students to write something in order for it to be visualized...

Thanks to Sue Waters who mentioned Wordle on her blog Mobile Technology in TAFE.