Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Classroom Observation 4: Revamping a Lesson

I was in a Spanish 3 class to observe technology in action. After class I asked the teacher about the lesson and she described to me the conversion process to the technology enhanced lesson. It was cool to hear what went into her plan. Allow me to share her story.

She is teaching the subjunctive, which is commonly used when giving advice. In the past she wrote in Spanish three "problems" seeking advice. The students then had to write a response back to her giving her advice about any one of the problems.

In the laptop age she designed the assignment this way. Students had to use their MacBook camera and Photo Booth to take a video of themselves talking about a fake problem they are seeking advice on in Spanish. They then emailed this problem to a posterous site where the teacher had made them all contributors. In class that day the students had to comment, in Spanish, on each video. They had to make sure they did not repeat advice which meant they were always looking to post on a video that had the fewest comments and spread out the commenting to everyone's video. It also meant that the students had to read several comments. They also could get extra credit by correcting mistakes other students had made.

This lesson took no more time out of the teacher's allotted class time to teach the subjunctive. It had a speaking writing and reading part instead of just a reading and writing. On top of all that the problems were more diverse and more creative. An awsome example of the laptop difference.

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