Thursday, July 24, 2014

English Vocabulary Class

This is a vocabulary project consisting of a unit design to teach English as a foreign language by means of a 2.0 web tool (a wiki). It is intended for first year´s tourism students from the University College of Caracas. This is was done after recognizing the needs and the resources available for the students through a needs analysis instrument. By incorporating this web tool, I expect to compensate the lacks existing at the institution in terms of books, language laboratory and even the excessive amount of students per teacher. This can make the interaction among learners and teachers more effective, making them realize of the tools available beyond the classroom, to motivate students but also call the attention of the institution in order to support and promote the use of technologies inside the English classrooms.

The main purpose is to help students improve their vocabulary and pronunciation by introducing information and communication technologies (ICT) in their syllabus. 

This is the first step to the introduction of these kinds of tools to ELT at the previously mentioned institution. This university offers a four-year Bachelor program in Tourism where English is mandatory in every year where they need a minimum grade of 12 to approve it. By the end of their studies students are expected to be able to communicate in English both in oral and written forms.

By using the Wiki students are expected to produce and practice vocabulary related to Tourism by using audio recordings of themselves, videos and PowerPoint presentations on the Wiki.

As said before the 2.0 web tool to be used is a wiki. This course wiki has 12 pages with links in the sidebar, learners can click on them anytime and the information will be displayed. The pages are: Welcome, the project, this is us, our course, our syllabus, evaluation, resources, week 1, week 4, week 7, week 10 and visitors page. In those pages learners will find a detailed description of the steps to follow in every activity. They will also find useful videos that will help them with pronunciation and to deal with some technical issues like how to do a power point presentation or how even to create a video with a cell phone. 

As a final reflection, although this is a lot of work, I really enjoyed doing this for my classes. I just hope my students value all the work, find it useful and contribute with their ideas to make it better.

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