January 30, 2013

Learning from mistakes

I've always believed students can learn a lot by noticing mistakes.
And by noticing someone's mistake, you might become more aware of your own.

My sharing pick today is EVERY DAY EDIT.

Every day Edit is an archive of short texts with 10 mistakes.


Choose one of the months and you'll get different texts to work with.

They offer the text with mistakes and another one with the corrections.

For tips on how to use this great resource, I recommend the reading of the wonderful post by Gary Hopkins with different activities for the same material. I guess that after working with these short texts on a regular basis, you can then invite students to correct writings made by their own classmates and themselves.
Do you have any other ideas for working with ERROR CORRECTION?

January 28, 2013

Ferramentas Digitais - ONLINE COURSE

If you are an English teacher in Uberlândia, Brazil, this is a great opportunity to reflect about technology integration in the classroom.

The online course will last for 8 weeks, starting February 14th, during which participants will have the opportunity to read articles, watch videos, participate in discussions and try out different webtools in a learning community.

The course is FREE and is part of the Master's thesis I'm writing.

January 26, 2013

Cartoonize your movies NOW


Remember that A-ha video clip where the band turns into cartoon characters singing their song "Take on me"?

Well, if you're not as old as I am, here is the video which had us dancing in the late 80's.

I never imagined I could use that kind of effect so easily in videos I record with an iphone or an ipad. All you have to do is download the FREE APP Cartoonatic, choose a video from your device OR use the app to record a video . There are various effects you can choose ( the video below was done using "Pencil Jetty").


After recording the video, it says you can share it via facebook, twitter, e-mail or send it to YOUTUBE. However, I tried exporting from within the app but it didn't work. So, I saved it to my ipad gallery and from there uploaded it to my youtube account.

How can we use this app with students?

- You can record your students roleplaying dialogues they have created and then play the cartoonized version for the whole class in youtube later on.
- You can record students miming actions and then play the video for the class to guess what they were miming.
- You can have students record themselves interviewing each other.
- Students can create a story and roleplay it in front of the camera.
- Students can create a parody of "Take on Me"and record themselves singing it.
- Students can dub the original song "Take on Me" and act just like the video clip.
Any other ideas? 

January 23, 2013

The sound of music (2) - my apps

This is a collection of FREE APPS which can bring music to your life.

1. RELAX MELODIES HD - a great FREE app to help you relax and maybe go to sleep. You can customize your own relaxing music by selecting what sounds you want to include: rainy day, birds, piano, flute, ocean, river, thunder and so on. I've never used it in class but I guess it's possible to use it to set moods for writing for example. (iphones and androids)


2. SONGIFY - another FREE app for iphone or androids. Record yourself saying something and the app turns it into music. I've already used it in class to record my students reading sentences they had created themselves using a target structure and then played all recordings as a dictation. (iphones and androids)

Similar apps


3. BAND OF THE DAY - free app which offers you songs from a new band every day. Great way of discovering new bands.


4. MOODAGENT - choose your mood and the app selects a playlist for you. For iphones and androids.


5. MUSIXMATCH - I've always thought reading lyrics while singing is a great way to practice pronunciation. Well, this is a FREE app which can let you  follow the lyrics. Just love it! (iphone or android)



6. SING SING TOGETHER (FREE) -This a Karaoke for kids. Perfect for kids to sing in English in EFL classes.


7. ANDROID KARAOKE SING ALONG - more than 1,000 most popular karaoke videos.



8. SHAZAM - If you're listening to a song but want to know what it's called or who the singer is, just turn on the app and shazam the app gives you the answer. (Iphones and androids)


9. MIDOMI - Many times you don't have the real song playing to identify it but only the tune that stuck to your head. The app allows you to sing or even only hum the tune and it identifies the song for you. Mashable says humming works better than singing. For iphones and androids.

Similar app: SOUNDHOUND

AND YOU? Do you have music apps you enjoy using? Please, leave your contributions in the comment area, I'd love to learn about other apps.

January 19, 2013

The Sound of Music - my picks

The first post of 2013 will be devoted to one of my passions: Music.

These are some websites which I use for pleasure or in the classroom.

1. EVERYONE'S MIXTAPE- This one I discovered yesterday and absolutely loved it. It allows you to create a playlist from youtube videos and share it with others. The playlists are organized on cassette cases like in the old days and as the music plays you can see the reel rolling. Certainly a flashback moment. This was my first mixtape. http://everyonesmixtape.com/#/mix/DqI63PCJrmF/1

2. STEREO MOOD - choose a mood and see what songs the site suggests. I like using this one while getting the room ready before my students arrive.

3. YOUTUBE ALARM - choose a song from youtube, set the alarm time and you can wake up to the sound of your favorite song. I use this website very often in class to time activities, or to remind me of something important we need to do that day.  I also use it while surfing the web to keep me focussed and keep track of time.


4. LYRICS TRAINING - I couldn't leave this one out. It's a fantastic site anyone can use to have fun or for learning purposes. You listen to a song and have the chance to complete gaps with the missing words. Wonderful listening practice! If you have an IWB, try dividing your students into 2 groups and have a competition for completing a song. It's great fun!


5. MOOD STREAM - I have already posted about Mood Stream  here. What I like about it? Well, you select your mood and then apart from listening to snippets of songs you can see beautiful photos from Gettyimages in the background. I've already used it in class for picture description. An idea for classroom activity can be found here.