Language Learning and Teaching with the aid of Technology

Diary of a Second Life English Teacher … Part 2

There aren't going to be as many as one a day of these blog posts … it's just that I did something more today! After each Course Meeting I try to publish a podcast, really as a way trying to keep the group together. This is quite a challenge with these 'place of study' SL courses, because the students never meet IRL. I've been podcasting on my courses since 2005 and the feedback I get is always very positive. It seems as if being able to listen to the teacher's reflections at regular intervals is useful to my students - and I suppose I must enjoy talking to my computer (well, it is a Mac!).

This time around I reflected on the point of the Porky exercise, took them through my reasoning about the first Assessment (which is a short individual presentation about an SL-related phenomenon) and described how I felt the first guided role play worked (Poisoning the Pigeons - after the great Tom Lehrer song!). The whole guided role play idea was lifted directly from the RSA CoCom exam, but I've used the form of these many times over the years, mostly IRL with Swedish Army officers (role-playing things like how you dampen tensions at a road block in Lebanon, or how you decide who gets compensation for the Kosovan cow which was frightened by the noise from the Russian Army firing range!).

I also managed to post the 'What you said/what you should have said' form on the web site. Whilst they speak, I note down more or less every mistake that's made. I then write these up - with corrections and explanations - and post them on the course web site. I developed this ability when I worked at a Swedish Foreign Ministry language school up in the north of Sweden, when we used to give feedback on 'Job Talks' each afternoon.

BTW, the course web site can be accessed via this link:

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