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Blended Learning : Going beyond a traditional classroom


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My session for NileTESOL conference on 28th January, 2013

Published in: Education

Blended Learning : Going beyond a traditional classroom

  1. 1. Ayat Ahmed Al-Tawel NileTESOL 2013
  2. 2. Blended LearningAre teachers new comers to new technology ?
  3. 3. International Collaboration Projects Learning Together: an internatioanl collaboration project between students from Argentina and Egypt. Harry Potter Book Project : A Collaborative Initiative Between Students from Egypt and Canada
  4. 4.  BAW (Becoming a Webhead) / EVO online sessions Socializing through different PLNs Yahoo groups, Google +, Facebook, …etc.
  5. 5. Ayat Al-Tawel (Egypt) – Maria Bossa (Argentina)
  6. 6. Interviews through Skype Video conferencing Skype is a synchronous web tool which allows real time, live discussions which expand the walls of the traditional classroom and engage students to communicate with authentic audience. "Skype helps to improve listening skills as the user has to pay active attention to what the interlocutor is saying; its useful to practise vocabulary and everyday language in a natural way; it fosters improvization and puts our knowledge to the best both when writing and speaking; it helps to improve our ability to understand our facial gestures (video calls)"
  7. 7. Before the interviewLanguage context Clarifying the aims of the interview Motivating the students to practise their English in real timeSocial context Talking to students about the teacher to be interviewedPre-interview preparations Question preparations on the part of the students Questions sent to the teacher so as to check topics
  8. 8. The interview Students’ motivationStudents’ participationStudents’ understanding of the interviewed teacher
  9. 9. After the interview1)Instant feedback (directly after the interview). I thought what We learnt a lot She had a would have of things about different happened if I Argentina & had language. hadn’t prepared a great deal of any questions fun It was very It was It’s good to interesting but I exciting know about though I other countries. blamed myself that I hope we can I haven’t shared in didn’t share do it with other that interview countries.
  10. 10. After the interview (cont.) Better and authentic language practice: Writing a diary, an autobiography, a story, a dialogue. Continual, on-going language practice The creation of the ArgentEgypt group in…
  11. 11. ArgentEgypt Facebook private group Any member can post a comment or question Chat in English Arabic and Spanish learning: language, customs and culture A range of topics: greetings, birthdays, likes, festivals, interests
  12. 12. ArgentEgypt - Pics
  13. 13. Harry Potter Book Project : A Collaborative Initiative Between Students from Egypt and Canada Ayat Al-Tawel (Egypt) - Bernadette Rego (Canada)
  14. 14. Project Objectives- Change stereotypes about other countries.- Improving SS reading skill, writing and critical thinking- Using the language confidently in an authentic environment.- Enjoying travelling virtually to other countries and making new friends.
  15. 15. What is Edmodo?••• Free learning management system• Currently more than 6.5 million teachers andstudents connected to EdmodoUser statistic source:
  16. 16. Edmodos Features• Its a free, safe and closed place to connect, collaborate andshare content.• No e-mail required for student sign-up• Students cannot privately message each other• Assignments, quizzes and grades can be created and shared.• Important links and docs can be stored in folders.• Teachers can create multiple groups and sub-groups.• Teachers can award students badges.• Parents can sign up with a special code.
  17. 17. Harry Potter Book Project: Preliminary Work• Teachers met via Skype and exchanged e-mails• Used Google docs to organize class lists and create sub-groups (4-8students).• Educating students about each others respective countries andcultures• Established an Edmodo group.• Obtaining signed permission from parents• Explaining conduct guidelines to students• Creating student accounts• Ensuring internet access for all students
  18. 18. Preliminary work (cont.)• Establishing a wiki for students where they have a linkto the online open book website, vocabulary andquestions for each chapter.
  19. 19. Harry Potter Book Project: Student Introductions• Students introduced themselves in Edmodo• Created voice introductions using Voxopop (
  20. 20. Voxopop audio introductions
  21. 21. Harry Potter Book Project: Initial Challenges• Educating students about online etiquette• Encouraging students to post introductions• Dividing students into sub-groups•Motivating students who will work on theirown as an extra activity.• Students’ access to internet.
  22. 22. Harry Potter Book Project: Some Obstacles• Voxopop (closed / open talk group)• Students working online at school.• Students working online on their own athome. (Jing tutorial)• Open book link no longer working (Plan B)• Time constraints discouraging some students(Adding a variety of optional work to do)
  23. 23. Harry Potter Book Project: Successes• Student enthusiasm in communicating withpeers and learning more about each other (dailylife, school day and subjects, Pyramids, RCMP,food, landmarks..etc.), moving from a bookcontent to a general content.• Students mastering Edmodo• Students working effectively in groups• Students privacy protected throughout thelearning process
  24. 24. Harry Potter Book Project: What We Have Learned• Importance of weekly communication between teachers• Importance of educating students about online etiquette• Selecting tools that : - are appropriate for the students’ age and ability. - protect students online privacy. - improve on what I can do without technology.• Accepting obstacles may arise while embracing a positiveattitude
  25. 25. Recap of tools used- Facebook- Edmodo- Voxopop- Wiki- Google docs- Skype
  26. 26. "If we are to teach real peace in this world, and if we are to carry on a real war against war, we shall have to begin with the children." - Mohandas Gandhi Thank you @ayatawel