developing writing speaking skills on yahoo discussion groups n.
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Developing writing/speaking skills on Yahoo discussion groups

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Developing writing/speaking skills on Yahoo discussion groups. GOALS. enable students to apply prior knowledge of English grammar and vocabulary in a communicative context. It facilitates cultural learning from real life situations among your students;

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  • enable students to apply prior knowledge of English grammar and vocabulary in a communicative context
It facilitates cultural learning from real life situations among your students;
  • It may be used in debating different issues, researching the target language community and developing cultural awareness.
ict requierments
  • Multimedia laboratory
        • Computers
        • Internet connection
        • Headphones
        • Microphones
The students should be able to use Yahoo Messenger, Yahoo Groups and Yahoo Mail, as well as Microsoft Internet Explorer.
  • They also have to provide their own e-mail yahoo addresses.
lesson preparation
  • find native English universities via the Internet and set up a virtual partnership.
  • contact them to outline plans and collect email addresses for your students and subscribe them to the discussion group.
lesson starter
  • familiarize the students with LANGUAGE USE, TOPIC AREA and TASK.
  • review exemplar e-mail messages on a board.
  • set up the TOPIC DISCUSSION
lesson body
  • Students now start discussing with their virtual correspondents on the topic of the day and using the target language.
  • They may either use instant messages or e-mails to exchange their ideas.
instant messages
  • Instant messages via the Internet are a form of synchronous communication.
  • Participants type messages to each other, which everyone in the 'chat room' can read.
  • Text chat does not need much bandwidth, making it an easy form of synchronous communication to establish from a technological point of view.
It can be an ideal environment for intermediate and advanced students to develop skills of spontaneous communication in the foreign language.
  • Conversation text can also be copied and pasted into a Word document for further work.
  • Exploring the traditions and festivals of other countries.
  • exchange key statements in mother tongue, with photos, images and even a sound file of a relevant song attached.
  • create presentations in the target language containing text, image and sound.
  • research the significance, history and development of particular festivals in their mother tongue and then collaborate with students in the virtual group to identify target language for the theme.
  • produce an e-exhibition in the target language, housed on the university website and linking to a similar page on the website of the partner university.
e mail messages
  • E-mail is a cheap, fast, informal and easy-to-use method of written communication with a real audience, giving students time to draft and redraft messages until satisfied and confident with the content.
  • Incoming target language messages give students motivating opportunities to cope with reading unknown language and materials such as digital photos and voice recordings can also be exchanged as attachments.
  • Exchanging emails on a topical issue
  • Themes such as traffic congestion, litter, junk food or reality television could be used.
  • Students work in teams to agreed headings within each theme, writing initially in mother tongue and amassing useful target language from incoming emails.
  • At a given point in the project, each team switches to writing in the target language.
  • Each team creates a final document, in which they make a set of recommendations in the target language.
  • These can be shared between partner universities or placed on respective websites.
  • produce a short written text with some questions and statements expressing opinions and reasons for these;
  • new cultural facts;
  • express in simple target language how these compare to their own experience.