Thursday, September 22, 2011

Twitter and Language Technology

I recently made a Twitter account (follow me - @palmerlanguage) in order to connect with other language professionals and to facilitate the exchange of ideas about language teaching and linguistic research.

I have been resisting Twitter in my personal life, but I keep reading about how great it is for building professional learning networks. So, in the name of academic enrichment, I gave in.

First Impression: 

Twitter is a foreign country where the people don't “speak” Facebook or Google+. 

I have absolutely no idea what is going on, and I am so overwhelmed by the amount of information that is available there! Isn't technology frightening? One thing I learned after the first 3 or 4 hours is that I need to keep track of whose links I open, because I found all of these great sites, but now I have no one to give credit to. (Sorry if I stole your link! I swear, I didn't mean it!)

Anyway, here is a round-up of great links I came across in the last couple of days through Twitter and through other blogs I regularly read that relate to (using) language technology for learning and/or teaching! I linked to the original blog/story when I could.

Good for online teaching:
  • Video Instructions for BrainShark -  BrainShark is a tool that lets you add audio to power point presentations
  • An article against Blackboard - Anyone who has used Blackboard for learning or for teaching (I've used it for both!) and suffered the frustration will like this article. It comes with suggestions for alternate sites. 
Good for incorporating technology in the traditional classroom:
  • An article about 20 ways to model technology - Good ideas for anyone, but especially good for people who have technology available in their classrooms
  • An app that creates e-books - a interesting application of relevant langauge practice (Via the Langwitches Blog)
  • YouTube launches a teacher-friendly site - Good to language exposure in the classroom is usually a good thing.YouTube is blocked at a lot of schools, but I wonder if YouTube Teacher will be allowed?
  • An article about Drop Box - Drop box is a group-work-file-sharing program. This article talks about the benefits of using it for classroom learning. This could be used for collaborative paper writing, peer editing, and in preparing for presentations.
Language/Educational Technology Tools/Articles:
Tools for students of language:
  • An idiom translator - A pretty cool way to compare the native language and the target language for more relevant learning! (via Linguistics in the Classroom)
  • Color Idiom List - A lot of color idiom from a lot of different languages
  • Pronunciation Tool – I remember that whoever I stole it from mentioned that it is helpful for students before they give oral presentations

That's it for now. Enjoy the reading, and follow us on Twitter!