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International Language Schools. Title. Teaching Teens with Technology. www.ef.com/teacher. www.ef.com. Gordon Lewis. G.L. Oxford University Press Teenagers (2007) Internet and Young Learners (2004) Games for Children (1999). International Language Schools. www.ef.com.

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International Language Schools


Teaching Teens

with Technology

  • www.ef.com/teacher


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Gordon Lewis


  • Oxford University Press

  • Teenagers (2007)

  • Internet and Young Learners (2004)

  • Games for Children (1999)

International Language Schools


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Welcome to the lecture

  • Listen to the speaker and use the buttons to interact.

  • Saying yes and no

  • Raising your hand

  • Laughing and clapping

  • Text messages

  • Questions will be answered during and after the talk.


International Language Schools


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Teens get bad press!

International Language Schools


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Who’s a Teen?

  • 10-12: Tweens

International Language Schools


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Young Teens

  • physical changes

  • social pack animals

  • longer concentration span than primary children

  • abstract thinking

  • think they’ve figured things out

  • black and white thinking

  • believe what they think and what everyone else thinks is essentially the same.

  • they have one foot in the adult world and one in the world of their childhood.

International Language Schools


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Middle Teens

  • physical changes

  • physically they are adults

  • clear attraction to opposite sex

  • more independent, less group behaviour.

  • individual relationships grow in importance

  • accept that there is more than ONE answer to a question.

  • differentiated world view.

International Language Schools


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How do we motivate teens?Challenge them to think!

  • Language Awareness Activities

    • engage teenagers by creating language awareness activities which foster an understanding of and interest in how languages function.

  • Critical and Creative Thinking Tasks

    • encourage logical thinking and reasoning

    • generate new ideas

  • Teenager Topics

    • focus on topics and themes that are important to teens

    • set up contexts and let students provide the content

International Language Schools


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How Can Technology Help?

International Language Schools


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What is technology?

  • CDs, DVDs, Podcasts, Digital Video

  • More than the WWW

  • E-mail, Chats, Blogs

  • Online communities (social networks)

  • Synchronous and Asynchronous environments

International Language Schools


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What technology is not

  • It is not a separate reality- it mirrors what exists

  • It is only communicative if you make it so.

  • It doesn’t do “stuff”- you do- especially on the Internet.

  • Internet: a non-linear anarchic environment

    • Which you lend it contours through interaction

International Language Schools


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Instructional tool or motivator?

  • Will the interaction with the Internet be part of the teaching process?

  • Is language embedded in the online task, or will you use it to embellish offline activities (pictures, video, audio, games)?

  • Beware too many bells and whistles

  • Balance language goals and “coolness’ factor

International Language Schools


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Goal: Invisible Technology

  • Forget about why or should we.

  • Stop seeing technology as an add on.

  • Remember for teens, technology is as common as the telephone.

  • As one Italian writer wrote:

  • We don’t have “BALL” and “PALL”

International Language Schools


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We Need a Model for the Internet

  • Too often, information and teaching practice is simply transferred to the Internet as is (online exercises, reference sites).

  • We need to rethink how we access and use information.

  • We need new teaching frameworks if we want to fully exploit technology, especially the Internet.

International Language Schools


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One Way of Looking at the Internet


Web Search

  • Web Creation

International Language Schools


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Creating Communities

  • Exchange sites such as Keypals, iearn

  • Interest groups/lists- also yahoo and google groups- make your own

  • Social networks: myspace, facebook etc…chats(?)

  • Communities of Practice (teacher networks)

  • Online training (moodle)

International Language Schools


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The “E” lympics (basic activity)

Goal: To compare results of a competition

Language: Comparatives, superlatives, simple past, numbers…

  • Introduce the subject of the Olympic Games to your class. Ask them what kind of sports are played at the Olympics. Make a list of these sports.

  • Hand out the “E” lympics worksheet. Explain to the children that you are going to hold an “E” lympics at school and the partner schools are going to do the same.

  • the “E” lympics events. If possible take photos with a digital camera.

  • Record the results of the events on the worksheet and send the sheet and the photos to your partner schools.

  • As the partner schools send in their results, record them on a master worksheet.

International Language Schools


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The “E” lympics (differentiation)

  • Step 1

    • Research Olympic Games on the Internet.

    • Share games with partner schools.

  • Step 2

    • Conduct a live chat with the partner school.

    • Create a video or audio “commentary”.

  • Step 3

    • Create a Website or “Yahoo” group site.

    • Work with partner school (s) to design and select content.

    • Work in virtual teams to edit and post information.

International Language Schools


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Distances(web search activity)

3.11 Distances

How far is it…?

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Potential Search Issues

  • You can get lost!

  • Clutter and advertising. Focus on specific aspect of site.

  • How do you and students make decisions about information.

  • To what extent you want to delimit activities, both in terms of language and thinking skills.

International Language Schools


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Internet as a ThirdLearning Space

International Language Schools


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  • We need to understand that information is constantly changing, dynamic, and context bound.

  • Students need ‘higher order thinking skills” to evaluate, prioritize information.

  • Employ Constructivist principles to convert information into knowledge.

  • We are still applying “analog” ideas to a digital world.

  • Each student is now an actor on the Internet and contributes to its growth and future.

International Language Schools


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International Language Schools