Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Ugly Betty, SCI Miami, Grammar Girl and Merriam-Webster in one package!

It is true that Web 2.0 opened new horizons to both teachers and students. Anyone can easily access information on an infinite variety of subjects in just a couple of seconds: we are became legitimate participants in the world outside our classroom. The problem is now – how can we face the amount o information bombarding us n a daily basis. How can we teach our students select appropriate material and be effective while surfing the web? A possible answer is RSS – a great tool to make classroom blogging more productive for the students and professors. At the beginning of the semester, I included a list of links I want my students to check on a regular basis. These are online dictionaries (Merriam Webster http://www.m-w.com/ check on the ESL Learner section!!!), CNN, US Today and BBC news, Grammar Girl podcasts, and of course some fun stuff: like Ugly Betty Blog (believe it or not, I am watching that too from time to time Jhttp://www.uglybettyblog.com/ ), or CSI Miami blog (I am a big fan of that http://www.cbs.com/primetime/csi_miami/blog.php !!!!). My students started complaining that it became time consuming to check on all these blogs and links daily, so the RSS solution was perfect for me! I asked all of them to create a Bloglines account, subscribe to their favorite blogs and check on the headlines that appear on the right section. This is how they can skim for information they might find useful, or just have fun browsing on the latest posts – just like browsing a newspaper! Easy, time saving and just very cool! Try it out with your students and let me know if it worked for them!

10 comments:

Mary H said...

Great idea, Daniela! It is great to see that you have already put the power of RSS to work in your classroom with a positive response. The variety of sites is also interesting! Your students must really enjoy your classes ;)

Hugs from Japan,
MaryH

Cristina Costa said...

Indeed Daniela,
I do find RSS feeds make my life much easier.
I started using bloglines, and the protopage. Now I use igoogle. I made my igoogle page on my own computer,s o every time I open the browser I check what's new. Also it is in synch with my email account, so I can even access it from anywhere in a very easy way. I just love it!

Ana Maria said...

Hello Daniela,

I came to your blog in order to read this specific blog but ended up doing a full tour: visited the blog webquest, had a look at some of the blogs your sts wrote and had a lot of insight for my groups this semester. Your idea about using Rss is really logical, first you had sts feel how overwhelming keeping track of information is and then presented RSS as the solution. Great! I´ll definitely include your blog in my RSS account!

anamaria
http://lifefeast.blogspot.com

Vicky said...

Hi Daniela,
I really enjoyed touring around your blog. Even more I felt as one of your students!
I've learnt from you a lot!
I'll keep a track on you now on...

A warm hug from Misiones, Argentina

Vicky

Berta said...

Hi Daniela,
Your blog is fantastic. I feel you have really caught the blogging spirit and have applied the B4Ed tools, practices, suggestions and expertise right away. Congratulations.
I would recommend you apply the "word verification" feature to the moderation of comments. It avoids spam but still lets your audience to participate.
Warm hugs from cool Caracas,
Berta

Eric said...

Really simple, yet effective solution to the problem. I'm starting a short computer based class today for my ESL students and I think I'll have to do something similar.

I'll put a post on my site: http://www.teachers-call.com once I get it sorted out to discuss how things went.

Lots of great info on you blog here by the way.

Cheers,
Eric

Yulia said...

Hello,Daniela.You are so experienced and your blog is very instructional for me. I'm only the beginner in this and I'll put a link of your blog to mine for my colleages also.I haven't tried blogging yet and now I'm convinced that as soon as I start I should also teach them RSS. By the way, we really have something in common - I had a groupmate and a friend at the university from Kishinev and my husband was born there. Now I teach students of 16 -19 years old. And with your international groups will it be possible to start a join blogging project?
Love from NNovgorod
//trialworld.blogspot.com

Patricia said...

Hi Daniela,

Your blog is great! One day I'll be able to make one like this, till then I'll keep on tracking yours to learn more about how to make catching, interesting and amusing blogs.

Thanks for sharing!
Patricia (Pato) from Argentina
http://reflectingonweb20.blogspot.com/

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