Using ELT podcasts to enhance students’ listening and speaking skills Paul Sze Dept of Curriculum & Instruction CUHK
“Blogging is so last year, now podcasting is hot now.” Title of a journal article published in Nov., 2005
“Podcasting”: the 2005 word of the year The New Oxford American Dictionary
Map of Seminar • Podcasting • What are podcast? • How to subscribe to podcasts. • How to create your own podcasts. • ELT podcasts • Content of ELT podcasts • Activities with ELT podcasts • A CUHK podcasting project
A teacher’ experience with podcasts “I have been having my students make their own podcasts lately (their writing assignment is to explain the process!) and it has been going really well. Students are fascinated and highly motivated. They are working in heterogeneous groups, which requires that they use English to negotiate and plan and create…” • >Anthea Tillyer (from a TESLCA-L message)
An example school project in ELT podcasting • http://podcast.fdfz.cn/
What are podcasts? • Podcasts are audio (sometimes video) programmes on the Web which are usually updated at regular intervals. • New episodes can be listened to on the computer, or downloaded to an MP3 player or iPod for later listening. • They can be ‘subscribed to’ so that (a) you will be alerted to new episodes available, (b) new episodes will be downloaded to your computer automatically.
Two Types of Podcasts • “Radio podcasts”: Podcasts based on radio programmes produced by radio broadcasting corporations, e.g., BBC, RTHK • “Independent” podcasts: Web-based podcasts produced by individuals and organisations.
Examples of ‘Radio Podcasts’ • www.bbc.co.uk • www.rthk.org.hk
Examples of ‘independent’ podcasts • http://firstpersonshow.net/ • http://www.shakespearecast.com/ • http://www.frenchpodclass.com/
Examples of Podcast Directories www.podcastalley.com www.podcast.net/
Two ways to subscribe to a podcast • Get notification of new episodes through ‘Web-based podcatchers’, e.g., My Yahoo; Podnova; Newsgator. (You need to sign up to these sites first.) • Subscribe to podcasts through “Destop podcatchers” and have new episodes downloaded to your computer automatically; e.g., iTunes; Juice. (You need to download and install the software first.)
Demonstration: 3 ways to subscribe to “Just Vocabulary” • http://justvocabulary.libsyn.com/ • 1. Getting ‘alerts’ in ‘MyYahoo’: one-click subscription. • 2. Add to ‘iTunes”: one-click subscription. • 3. Copy and paste RSS feed into RSS reader.
Demonstration • Finding and subscribing to a podcast from iTunes
Demonstration • Looking for a podcast in a directory and subscribing to it: • www.podcast.net
Listening while on the move • Download clips in your podcatcher to your mp3 player • Download clips in your podcatcher (eg, iTunes) to an iPod
Download to MP3 player • 1. Open “My Documents”. • 2. Open “My Music”. • 3. You will see a sub-folder named “iTunes”. • 4. The downloaded clips are all there.
Download to iPod • 1. Open iTunes • 2. Connect iPod to computer. • 3. The new episodes will download themselves automatically.
Connecting iPod to projection equipment • iPod can be connected to projection equipment in classroom, and then audio and video clips can be played for listening and viewing.
Teacher Podcasts Podcasts produced by a teacher for his/own students. Example: http://samantha.podomatic.com/
Producing your own podcasts • Produce your own audio programmes in mp3 format: record into computer; record into mp3 player; convert cassette recording into mp3. • Upload your mp3 files to a/your website. • Create an RSS feed on the website for people to subscribe to. (There are sites that provide free software for creating RSS feed.) • Publicise your podcast; or submit your RSS feed to a podcast directory site (iTunes; podcast.net; etc.)
Software for producing sound recordings in mp3 A free audio recorder and editor: http://audacity.sourceforge.net/
One-stop podcast production: www.podomatic.com
Searching for ELT podcasts • Look for ELT podcasts in • general podcast directories, e.g., www.podcast.net/; podcast directory in iTunes • Directories of educational podcasts, eg., http://epnweb.org/ • ELT Podcast directories, eg, http://www.englishcaster.com/
Content of ELT podcasts • Comprehensive, eg., www.englishteacherjohn.com/podcast/ • Whole lessons, eg. • http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/ • Vocabulary, idioms, slang, etc. • http://newyorkenglish.net • Conversations with script, eg • http://www.e-poche.net/conversations/
Content, contd. • Jokes, eg. • http://www.manythings.org/jokes/ • Songs, eg. • http://englishpodsong.blogspot.com/ • Phonetics, pronunciation, eg. • http://phoneticpodcast.com/ • Stories • http://www.englishthroughstories.com/ • Listening comprehension • http://mylcpodcasts.blogspot.com/
Improving Ss’ listening skills through … • Intensive Listening: listening accompanied by while-listening and/or post-listening tasks • Extensive listening: listening for pleasure and for exposure to native speakers’ speech
Student Podcasts A great way to improve students’ speaking skills
Benefits of Student Podcasts • Motivation: a real audience out there • Perfection through practice/rehearsal • Collaboration through group podcasts • Attention to accuracy: permanent record of performance • Mixed-ability teaching: different tasks for different ability levels • Large-class teaching: everyone has a chance • Less confident SS: ‘behind-the-scenes’ performance
Examples of Student Podcasts http://bylpodcasts.blogspot.com/ http://englishpodsong.blogspot.com/
Reading aloud SS give their thoughts on topic assigned by teacher SS listen to classmates’ thoughts and respond Oral Diary; oral weekly report Group presentations on a completed project Oral book report Picture description Story telling Chained story telling Agony Aunt: giving advice Creating riddles Role play Debates Dramatic monologues Radio Drama Jazz chants ELT rap Activities for Student Podcasts
Creating Class Podcasts • (Place class podcasts on school’s homepage.) • Start a blog that also hosts podcasts for the class, eg. http://www.wordpress.com/ • Create an account for whole class with a free podcasting site, eg, http://podomatic.com • Have class share the same username and password. • SS upload their mp3 files to class podcast on their own. • Design activities that encourage SS to respond to each other.
Reaching out to more audiences: Inter- class/school/country podcasting projects
An appeal from an ESL teacher • I've been experimenting with podcasting and my students have recorded some questions about food, culture, body language, geography, animals, sports, habits, religion. The initial idea was to interview students in any English speaking country, but we are open to anyone interested in participating. We'll probably have some students in Australia (ESL) , Argentina and Brazil involved. You can see the podcast here: http://mfr.podomatic.com/ Any help would be appreciated, thanks! Fernanda
ELT Rap: What is it? Rap adapted/written for ELT purposes.
ELT rap: Attributes • Like conventional raps, ELT raps have rich linguistic content. • They are highly rhythmical. • They can be said purely for fun. • They can also allow secondary students to express their thoughts and feelings about society, life, friendship, etc.
Why ELT rap • Rap appeals to teenagers. • ELT raps improve pronunciation through repetition. • They stimulate creativity. • They encourage self-expression.
Why radio drama • A great way to practise pronunciation, especially intonation. • It develops SS’ collaboration skills. The process is fun. • The number of SS involved is flexible. • It caters for mixed ability classes. • Producing a high-quality radio play is EASY with the advent of mp3, audio recording software, and easily available special effect sound clips. • Motivating: audiences afforded by Internet and podcasting.
Thank you !!!