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After reading the course outline on the first lesson, I felt enthusiastic

and motivated. However, after the second lesson I was totally lost as

I realized that this course would be very demanding and that it needs a lot of preparation.

funny.jpgSubsequently, after the last lesson everything changed. After creating my own wiki, I started looking at the course from a different perspective as the knowledge I will gain from it will be far more beneficial than the time and effort needed.

Moreover, this course is going to help me to improve my teaching skills and teach me how to import technology into my lessons. By the way, I have been using an interactive whiteboard for eight months now and the results are outstanding. Studens are more motivated and they really enjoy the lesson.



funny_face.jpg I cannot imagine using my old whiteboard again!!! :) funny_face.jpg



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This session was extremely interesting as the first presentations took place.

We shared a lot of interesting information, we exchange ideas, our personal

experiences from the course and suggested ways of improving it. The most

important aspect of the course is that we have worked together as a team

and that we we have learned a lot. I believe that we have acted as students

and as teachers the same time. I have really enjoyed this course. I have learned

so much. I am going to start applying everything I have learned this summer.

Although the course has almost finished we should never forget that we must

continue learning and expanding our knowledge on all these technologies.

This course just opened our eyes and helped us realise the infinity of technology.

I believe we all owe a big "THANK YOU" to our lecturer for all the help and support

she gave us.



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This session was the last one before our Wiki presentations.

We spent the session working on every section of our Wiki in order to

have it ready for the presentation. We helped each other on various

problems that we were facing. Again our lecturer gave feedback and

helped us a lot with developing our Wikis. Now I need to prepare for my

presentation on Monday. There is a lot of work to be done.



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This session was extremely important as our instructor gave feedback

about our progress. In order to help us improve our Wikis, we were presented

the evaluation rubric that we are going to be graded on. Our Instructor's feedback

along with the evaluation rubric gave us a clear idea of what is expected from us.

Moreover, the positive feedback we got boosted our confidence. I believe this is

what we should do as future teachers as well. Praising our students is a large part

of motivation. Personally, after the positive feedback we received, although

I felt a little bit tired, it gave me the patience to continue improving my work.

After that we were informed about our Wiki presentations as we are almost at

the end of the semester.



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Today's lesson was quite confusing at the beginning. I found it difficult

to understand what Traditional Learning Theories and what Constructivist

Views of Learning are. Lucky as we are, having a very patient lecturer we finally

understood these concepts through various examples. I found these concepts very

interesting as they suggest that even if you have the tools and the knowledge in a

language it does not mean that you know how to use it in real life situations.

In our lecturer's words "Even if you have all the tools you need in order to build a

building that it does not necessarily mean that you know how to build it".

This example really helped me distinguish the difference between the two concepts.




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This is the second session we spent on the Online Thematic Unit.

I had never done any similar activity in the past so this second session

was really helpful in improving my thematic unit. Now that I have finished

my thematic unit I truly understand how important it is in order to present

a successful and interesting lesson to the students. It takes some time to

prepare it but it is worth it. It is your guide through the whole unit you are

teaching. Following your lesson plan step by step will help you avoid problems.

And the most important thing is that you can use it again in the future.




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PUBLIC HOLIDAY

HOORAY!!!


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This session focused on Thematic Units. We were asked to apply what

we had learned about the Thematic Unit by using the Thematic Topic we had

already prepared in a previous session in order to create a mini lesson plan.

This task is quite important as it will help us to understand the significance

of having a lesson plan and how to break down a thematic unit into smaller

activities. Having a lesson plan for each activity is extremely important as it

functions as a guide in order to achieve our aim.



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PUBLIC HOLIDAY

HOORAY!!!



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Today we continued working on Web 1.0 and Web 2.0.

My research is on Web 2.0, therefore, I have chosen to focus on Skype.

I have been using Skype for several years now but it had never crossed

my mind that it could be an amazing, useful tool in class. Actually, it is not

a tool. It is THE tool. Skype features enable you to shift your

teaching techniques and methods to the next level. This session on

Web 1.0 and Web 2.0 has helped me to understand how Web 2.0

applications can be my right hand in teaching. It is not only Skype

out there but a whole WEB 2.0 world with infinite capabilities.



Week 8B

Today we were introduced to a new subject (Web 1.0 and Web 2.0) which at

first I thought I wasn't familiar with. However, after our lecturer explained to

us what it was, I was amazed as I had been using it and I had not realized it.

Our new task is to do research on Web 1.0 or 2.0 and learn more about these

technologies. Then a very important issue has to be discussed.

How can we use these technologies in classroom? The answer to this question is

the key to the success of this task. After we finish with the task, we can share our

research among ourselves so that we gain as much as possible from this activity.



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During this session, we continued working on our webquest task. Most of the work

had been done at home. However, I spent the rest of the time in class to finish

it completely. Moreover, our lecturer taught us that as future English teachers

we should always be prepared and ready to give solutions. She used the word

'flexible' which I believe is the appropriate word to describe a good teacher.



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Today we were shown how PowerPoint presentation can be used in classroom.

PowerPoint is a very powerful software that is a must in teaching. PowerPoint offers you

the potential to create a variety of activities. Animation brings lessons to life. That

was a very useful tip from our lecturer. Moreover, we were introduced to our new topic,

webquests, which is another powerful tool.

"A Webquest is a learning activity used by educators. During this activity learners read,

analyze, and synthesize information using the World Wide Web.

Webquests were invented by Bernie Dodge and Tom March at

San Diego State University in 1995".

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/WebQuest

Our new task is to search the Internet for online webquests so that we understand what

a webquest is and how this technique can be beneficial in teaching. Furthermore, we have to

choose four webquests and evaluate them.

After exploring webquests, I realised that they are the solution in transforming a boring

task into a challenging and motivating activity.



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Teaching Writing- The Importance of Grammar and Vocabulary in Reading.

Today I focused on working on writing. I also have to work more on my wiki as it needs

improving. I got some feedback from my lecturer as she noticed a few mistakes that

I must correct. Having examined speaking, listening, writing and reading, we came

across various new pieces of information. We have also realised that the Internet is a source of

endless activities for any level.



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Teaching Reading was our new subject for today. We were given our tasks and

we worked individually. Other students were helping each other.

This session was really interesting because I have learned

what is actually happening in our unconscious mind while we read.

I have never thought about all these automatic actions taking place in our mind.

The fact that we are given time to work in class is really important.

We concentrate more and we really enjoy it.



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Holiday.

Hooooray!!!



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This session focused on listening and speaking. We worked

on the new task individually. We answered a few questions on

listening and speaking activities and we also searched the internet

in order to find listening and speaking websites. Technology today

is really helpful. While searching the internet, you come across a lot of

websites that offer free activities on pronunciation, listening and

speaking, etc. Apart from the fact that these sites can save teachers

valuable time, these activities are far more interesting for students

than the plain whiteboard.



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This was a very interesting session as we spent some time

discussing about the progress of the course.

More specifically, we talked about the course outline and how we

can improve it in order to gain as much as possible.

This conversation really made us all feel more comfortable with

the course as we shared our personal opinions.

Afterwards, we were introduced to our new task "Explore Online activities for the teaching of pronunciation"

We worked in pairs for this new task and we also finished some previous tasks.



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In this session I have learned how to plan a thematic unit. This is anotherchallenge for me as I have never done anything like this before.

Our lecturer helped us understand what a thematic unit is and how to plan one.We were given a topic as an example and various points were put on the board. We were asked to share our ideas with the whole class. In a few minutes, we came up with a huge amount of ideas and suggestions. This example gave us a clearer perspective of how to plan a thematic unit. Next, we were asked to choose our own topic and plan our own thematic unit.

After an internet search on "thematic units", I came across various pieces of useful information. I believe that by the end of this activity, I will have gained a lot.



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I have done my personal video. It wasn't that difficult after all. Moreover, it is very
useful in teaching. For instance, if your students have difficulty in one particularsubject you could create a video based on that subject so that students can visit your website anytime they want and access the information they need. Actually, students can have their teacher helping them 24 hours a day and youdon't even have to be there. Nevertheless, this should be considered as an extratool and not as a teacher substitute.

Another important element that we discussed was portfolio evaluation. Rubric is avery important issue. It helps and guides you throughout your work. Without rubric,we would not be able to say if our work is going well or not. We need something tocompare our work with. So, my rubric is still under development. :)


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The course has started becoming more demanding and challenging for everyone.One of our new assignments is to create a video clip and upload it on our Wiki.
Although it sounds easy, it requires time.
However, this assignment is going to help us understandhow videos can be used as an additional tool in teaching.



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Today's lesson was really beneficial for all my classmates since we had the time to share our knowledge and give feedback to eachother so that we can improve our Wikis.

Giving feedback is very useful because working together

and sharing ideas as a group drives the final outcome to success.



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