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Topics - hveitch2

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I found a recent article that shared an experimental study of using screencast video feedback to undergraduate, university-level ESL students' writing samples. I will share the link to the article, as well as a summary of the findings and implications for practitioners.

Link to article:'_Writing_and_Perception

1. Receiving feedback through screencast videos helped students reshape ideas
2. Receiving feedback through screencast videos helped students organize their writing
3.Receiving feedback through screencast videos helped students vary sentence structure
4. Receiving feedback through screencast videos was personal
5. Students found screencast videos helpful because they can go back and forth
6. Students found screencast videos helpful as they understand where they have lost marks
7. Students were aware of the encouragement and constructive comments provided by the teacher
8. Make sure video quality and sound quality are adequate
9. Loading times of the videos were a negative aspect
10. Students felt more engaged in the feedback process through screencast videos
11. Students wanted continued use of video screencast feedback
12. Make sure the teacher's responses are comprehensible, and at a speed/level where students can clearly understand
13. Time consuming for the teachers

Continued studies on this type of feedback would be beneficial, but overall it looks helpful for students and actually gets them to incorporate their feedback into future revisions.

Hello! I developed a mini-unit about teaching L2 learners to write a summary paragraph based off of an article. The teacher worked through the PPT with the students based off of an article read from the assigned textbook (I attached the article we used for an example). The teacher can use this PPT as a basis for instruction, along with the article and the example summary paragraph (attached) to guide the instruction. I taught this mini-unit over the duration of 10 hours (5 class periods) which at the end resulted in students submitting their own summary paragraphs of a selected article. This mini-unit is geared towards intermediate, adult learners (non-degree-seeking). For reference on the TSR/TBSR format, see my other post! Cheers!

This is a text written by Icy Lee (The Chinese University of Hong Kong), and published by Springer. This text outlines various forms of assessment in L2 writing and also provides relevant feedback from in-service classroom teachers. One reason why I like this text is that it provides insights not only from research but also from practitioners who in some cases agree with and in other cases dispute the findings from research.

I've copied a brief outline of the text, and a link to download the text. Enjoy!

Chapter 1: Introduction
Chapter 2: Purpose, theory, and practice of classroom L2 writing assessment
Chapter 3: Assessment for Learning in the L2 writing classroom
Chapter 4: Assessment as Learning in the L2 writing classroom
Chapter 5: Feedback in writing; perspectives, implementations
Chapter 6: Teacher Feedback; discrepancies between research and practice
Chapter 7: Role of Peer Feedback
Chapter 8: Role of Portfolio Assessment
Chapter 9: Use of Technology in Assessment and Feedback in L2 writing
Chapter 10: Closure; Classroom Assessment Literacy for L2 writing teachers

The Hobbit stuff / Fantasy World - Signpost Activity
« on: February 05, 2020, 01:32:06 PM »
Where is the world? – Construct a sign post that features as many different fictional places as you can think of (e.g. Hogwarts, Sherwood Forest, The Hundred Acre Wood, and Deltora). How many of the books about these places have students read? Which books would they like to read? To continue this idea find some books that have maps of fictional worlds (e.g. The Hobbit, the Narnia books, or the How to Train Your Dragon books) and use these as examples to create maps of fictional places from other books.

Descriptive Writing / "Descriptosaurus"
« on: February 05, 2020, 01:28:03 PM »
The term "Descriptosaurus" is a new and innovative model of creative writing that is a thematic expansion of a dictionary and a thesaurus. I first heard this term in a Routledge textbook for building literacy skills in primary-age children. Descriptosaurus provides children with a comprehensive resource to help them expand their descriptive vocabulary, experiment with language and sentence structure and build up narratives based around the following areas:

Settings landscapes, settlements and atmosphere
Characters appearance, emotions and personality
Creatures appearance, abilities and habitats

The attached document (pgs. 57-79) provide an in-depth description of utilizing the Descriptosaurus in a primary classroom, as well as explanations and examples of possible activities for developing descriptive and creative writing skills. I think that this could also be utilized in an English Language Learner context, not just with primary students!

One aspect of this tool that I really appreciate is the different themes it provides: Travel, Time of Day, Emotions, etc. For each theme, Routledge provides relevant vocabulary, phrases, metaphors, idioms, example sentences, and more. These examples can be used when developing reading and writing skills with learners.

The Hobbit stuff / Constructed Languages in the Classroom
« on: February 05, 2020, 01:17:13 PM »

This article written by Nathan Sanders in 2016 shares possible ideas for using constructed languages in classroom activities. He uses The Hobbit as a representation of Tolkien's created Elvish languages and provides different classroom activity examples as a way to connect to these languages. This can also be used in a classic linguistics college course too for analyzing.

I've copied and pasted the abstract here:

"Constructed languages (purposefully invented languages like Esperanto and Klingon) have long captured the human imagination. They can also be used as pedagogical tools in the linguistics classroom to enhance how certain aspects of linguistics are taught and to broaden the appeal of linguistics as a field. In this article, I discuss the history and nature of constructed languages and describe various ways I have successfully brought them into use in the classroom. I conclude from the results of my courses that linguists should take a closer look at how they might benefit from similarly enlisting this often criticized hobby into more mainstream use in the linguistics classroom."

As I was searching for academic-focused works related to The Hobbit, I stumbled upon this open-access journal of all things Tolkien. I haven't explored it too much in depth yet, but it looks like they have articles ranging from gaming to vocabulary development (and beyond). It was started by Valparaiso University and looks like it has regular publications. It even includes a "Search" function for you to explore whatever you'd like. Enjoy!

This is a study published in 2018 which synthesized information from 25 studies about elementary students (Kindergarten-Grade 3) with identified reading disabilities who are placed in an early intervention program through intensive reading. The duration of the program varied across the different studies, but all of the studies analyzed included at least 100 sessions with the elementary students. Almost all of the studies resulted in positive outcomes for early struggling readers. This can be an important factor to consider for teaching reading to learners both in the L1 and L2.

Organization / Paragraph Writing for Intermediate ESL: Using TBSR Format
« on: January 30, 2020, 09:14:14 AM »
The TBSR model helps intermediate ESL learners to write a well-developed paragraph with the following components: 1) Topic Sentence, 2) Bridge Sentence, 3) Supporting Statements, and 4) Return Sentence. This model was used in an Intensive English Program. Follow along with the PowerPoint to learn about this model, and how students can use this to improve their paragraph writing.

Here is a comprehensive list of discussion questions and helpful vocabulary and phrases that my intermediate ESL students and I came up with during our "Holes" Unit. This unit was tied in with reading and writing skills being taught at an intermediate Reading and Writing course at the Intensive English Institute at UIUC. The PPTs are broken up by how much students were assigned to read per week. The really long chunks were assigned probably due to a school break (like spring or winter vacation). Let me know if you have any questions - enjoy!

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