When it comes to learning a language we all know this one rule - practice makes perfect. Learning cannot only happen in the classroom, and these last years have proven to us that we need to find new, digital ways of teaching. This poses a set of challenges: how to keep students enthusiastic and interested? How to find the adequate platforms? Can learning a language be fun and practical?
Our participants could find the answers to all these questions - and more - during their weekly stay in Bologna.
The new edition of the course “Teaching languages in the digital era: the best apps, web platforms and ICT solutions for learning languages” took place in Bologna from 19/06/2022 to 25/06/2022. The participants came from all across Europe, with Daniela Meier, Christina Bunte, Alina Schwede, Helga Hartmann from Heinz-Nixdorf Gesamtschule Paderborn in Germany; Sara Martín González from EOI La Laguna in Spain; Doina Jalaveanu, Laura Tarau from Gradinita cu Prigram Prelungit nr 37 Braila in Romania; Gabriella Hegyi from Kossuth Lajos Evangélikus Általános Iskola és Alapfokú Művészeti Iskola in Hungary; Vasiliki Stouri, Eleni Karakolidou from SDE Kallitheas in Greece; and Carmen Plana Nacenta, Belén Aso Cuello from CPEPA Miguel Henrández in Spain.
During this course the participants learnt how to use a vast range of technological tools and to put them into use by integrating it into their teaching methods. These tools are useful not only for engagement and motivation but also to monitor progress for example in vocabulary learning, communication and individual work.
This course allowed the participants to engage in a great number of practical activities and to experience these tools first-hand. For example, they competed in a live quiz while learning how to create interactive language quizzes by using web apps.
In addition the participants also learnt about tools that allow the user to outline and recap the contents of the lesson and prepare for example grammar presentations, pose questions and monitor students’ attention in the classroom, especially during these times where distance learning is very common. They also explored platforms that can be useful to create worksheets and explainer videos easily.
The participants also discovered specific platforms that are also very useful for language learning because they allow teachers to add voice notes, questions and voiceovers to educational videos, turning them into lessons. They also had a look at tools to edit pictures and videos - such tools can be used for a variety of purposes: preparing multimedia content, introducing a new subject or summing up an old one, challenging the students’ to create their own work in order to engage their creativity.
The whole group was very active and made many learning games, which we were lucky enough to test out and share our feedback. One of the most interesting activities was experiencing and later creating their own digital escape room. We were also quizzed on many different subjects, so we could test our own trivia knowledge!
Learning languages can be challenging, however by using the right tools and incorporating technology into the classroom can increase engagement, creativity, and effectiveness! We sent the participants home with a whole suitcase of ideas and tools to practice with, and a backpack of memories :)
Discover more about this course at https://www.erasmustrainingcourses.com/ict-language.html