NMC 2009 - Language Teachers in Virtual WorldsPresentation Transcript
Language Teachers in Virtual Worlds Nick Noakes Graham Stanley Nergiz Kern Dennis Newson
Your Virtual Mission
Free 6-week online workshop
Topic: virtual worlds and language learning
Co-facilitators: 4 from different countries / time zones
Participants: target - practicing full-time language teachers (but in reality could be any background) located anywhere
Group size: ~100
Familiarity with virtual worlds: wide range, majority absolute beginners
Registration: open the whole 6 weeks
Your Virtual Mission
Your mission … should you accept it! … is to:
Decide with your three co-facilitators what the learning objectives / outcomes would be for your 6-week virtual worlds workshop (any discipline)
Sketch out what you will do for each of the 6 weeks
Decide what technologies you will use and why (e.g. only VWs or a mix of internet, web and VW technologies)
Decide how you will evaluate the participants’ experience
Met And Got Acquainted ...
... Again ...
... And Again!
Fought Techno Daemons
Burned Midnight & Midday Oil !
Got Outfitted For Travel
Explored Unimagined Spaces ...
Sometimes Alone ...
... But Mostly Together
... all this while blogging, commenting, discussing and posting snapshots
Got aMAZEd and Lost in Virtual Space
At Times, Even Lost Our Heads
But Could Always Call For Support
Gained Some Mastery Over The Virtual Kingdom
And Took Flight For Language Learning
Visited Far Away Places
Got Immersed In Cultures
Spoke in Foreign Tongues
Talked and Toured
Tried Out Some Tools Of The Trade
Engaged in Discussions
Taught And Learned As a Team
VWLL Activity at its Second Life Base Camp
45% for 3 or more minutes 27% for 10 or more minutes 60% for 9 or more times 40% for 26 or more times
75% for 2 or more pages 45% for 4 ore more pages
Activity Trends - During and After the Workshop
Participant Feedback “ I wish I had had more time to learn from other people, but I'm happy we are able to stay in touch” “ Well, I never felt alone in this process. There were always friendly people willing to help” “ The moderators put on lots of great events and tried hard to include everyone - both by having repeats of events at different times and by encouraging people to join discussions.” “ Finally, the team teaching practice really enabled me to apply what I've learned and more concretely think about teaching in SL. The collaborative environment as a team also enhanced my learning”
Participant Feedback “ I couldn't use voice so this was quite frustrating sometimes. I was using a mini laptop so I couldn't do much there.” “ Perhaps improved notes and/or more practice on managing own avatar and the in-world around us.” “ Working this course into a busy schedule is difficult, especially because events were offered at times I could not attend. I know this is an inherent difficulty of "global" courses, and I think the facilitators did the best they could to offer multiple sessions.” “ Time difference was an issue. If I attended the training session during my office hour and had to talk to my students, I was lost by the time I got back to my computer. That's why weekend sessions were better. You might want to give us the topics and different time slots and go with the time that got the largest number of votes. ”
Advice to Future …
“ Get active early”
“ Have fun and enjoy the ride. Be prepared to learn a lot.”
“ Jump in!”
“ Just do it”
“ Go for it... don't be a chicken ... open your mind and be amazed by creativity...”
“ Spare TIME. Without giving 2 hrs daily, you would learn nothing from this workshop.”
“ Get them active early”
“ Keep on giving what they have done so far.”
“ U Rock! Keep up the great work!”
“ Be prepared for hard work and long hours”
“ Facilitators were excellent. You need to push and wake up sleeping participants through emails/personal emails instead of group. Personal emails have its own effect. It seems that someone is looking at you as in physical class”
Plan to Continue in SL?
Yes – 87%
Maybe – 9%
No – 4%
In what way(s)?
“ Sharing ideas, participating in workshops, meeting with SL mentors, visiting educational places, attending educational lectures.”
“ I would like to participate in continued discussions about resources and instructional ideas / experiences. The forums that have already begun are a great starting point.”
“ Will try to take my students for a few tours when I'm ready; then pursue according to my students' feedback.”
“ Collaborative way, small experiments on the use of SL for learning”
Virtual Worlds & Language Learning
What are the missing pieces for Virtual Worlds to be implemented in higher education?
What are the learning implications of Virtual Worlds?
What kind of research would you like to see around this topic?