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easing toward an end

June 17, 2010

The first summer session will be over in a few days. I have tried a few things this session that I plan to continue with my communication class, and there are a few things that need sharpening up for the next summer session. I have added a couple of TED talks to the mix with Seth Godin and Michael Pollan‘s videos. The Pollan video was more difficult because the language was harder for the students to access in a couple of places. The student made issue videos were pretty good this time for which I can’t take much credit because I wasn’t there for the day that they spent in the lab. One change with this group was that the students who edited the videos did it on their macs at home instead of using the MovieMaker application or finalizing them in the ESL lab.

I did some practice listening to the news videos using some older videos and I plan to continue doing that. I did it with the iclickers, and it seemed to work in that I found out what they weren’t understanding. However, iclicker puts me into a multiple choice frame and limits the possible responses that the students might give. Still, it is better than relying on trying to read their faces, so I will continue with iclickers for now if I can. I want to add to my repertoire of iclicker activities.

The framework I used for persuasion, fact/logic, emotion, and path, seemed to improve the discussion of persuasion. I don’t know if there will be much transfer to the presentations yet, but I think it will be helpful to use in the future and use it in a way that makes it part of the class. To do this, I will try to find ways to work it in earlier.

I still have problems evaluating the video and the groups. Groups of four seemed to be too big this time as one person always seemed to get left out somewhat out of their own volition. I will try to use smaller groups in the second session if it is feasible. I think groups of three for making the videos will challenge the students to stretch out more and negotiate more. With four, there seems to be a tendency to let one person do the work.

One aspect of the final presentation is the preparation of a worksheet. I made a video with Jing to illustrate how to cite an online source. I made it and remade it. I hope it helps the students.

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