In this video clip from the Naace Connect series, Head of Modern Foreign Languages at Nottingham High School José Picardo explains how he uses text-to-movie tool Xtranormal as a way of helping his pupils develop their pronunciation, creative writing skills, peer assess their work and publish the results to a worldwide audience. An enthusiast of Web 2.0 technologies,
José makes the important point that he only uses ICT to produce a more effective outcome and not just for the sake of it. It is also great to hear that his pupils like to practise their Spanish after school by working on their Xtranormal presentations or communicating via various social networking sites.
The National Literacy Trust recently published a report suggesting that young people who blog or use sites like Facebook feel they are better and more confident writers compared to their peers. This news is no surprise to teachers such as José who has been working hard to create new and exciting learning opportunities for his pupils for some time now and reaping the benefits as a result.
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With this in mind, perhaps now is the time that we all need to start singing from the same hymn sheet and heed the powerful message in the recently published song I Need My Teachers to Learn 2.0 by Kevin Honeycutt. The tune may be cheesy, but the sentiment of the lyric certainly strikes a chord in a growing number of teachers from around the world who are trying to integrate more social media into their teaching. In the words of the song:
There's not one minute to burn ...
Take it away Kev!