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TTLO Unit 2 - Activity Design

In this unit, we delved further into how to take existing lesson plans and activities and modify them for online learning.

2.2 A3 Listening and Reading

A Young man wearing headphones

For this activity, I took existing listening and reading lesson plans from my repertoire and modified them for the online, asynchronous context. This was an eye-opening experience in that I really saw how much additional detailed scaffolding is necessary for an activity designed for face-to-face courses to be used online. Each has a "before" and an "after" version.

Our colleague Sara Gardner asked if the level might be too high, to which I responded that it would be without the annotated checklist of ideas from the video for them to follow. Then, our colleague Valorie Arrowsmith suggested having the learners mark each idea Time 1, Time 2, or Time 3 to assess when they caught each idea (this one I am borrowing!)

For this activity, I took an existing writing lesson plan from my collection and transformed it for online use. Again, it became clear that an activity designed for face-to-face courses needs to be reimagined a bit for the online context. 

Our colleague Valorie Arrowsmith said that it was refreshing to see pragmatics covered in the lesson. Our colleague Sylvia Gregorutti also commented, wondering if the instructions would be given in English or Spanish. This typically depends on the level of the learner; and since these learners would be in the Advanced range, I'm confident they could handle some instructions in Spanish.

Writing with Pen
Kids Raising Hands In Classroom

In many of our classes, we have to rate participation. But does this practice really lead to better learning outcomes, or are we just giving a platform to the loudest? Does participation equal engagement? Check out my blog post to get my thoughts on this topic.

Our colleagues Frances Matos, Valorie Arrowsmith, and Rachel Maina all helped me get to a definition and a rubric I'm ready to put to use. See the document for their specific thoughts.

For this lesson, I took the listening activity from 2.2 A3 and expanded it by adding a speaking phase and my engagement rubric. During the process, Professor Matos was instrumental in guiding me toward a more solid definition for engagement than I had previously been using. By bringing together all the concepts we discussed, the resulting activity came out quite solid.

Girl Using Laptop
Socializing Online

Professor Matos had us give one or two tips for online language learning for each modality (listening, reading, writing, speaking) as we progressed through this unit. She then asked us to compile these into a list - and I thought this would be perfect for a blog post.

In this unit, we reflected on the challenges and rewards inherent in online language teaching and composed a list of tips for online language learners and teachers. We also reflected on engagement. Check out my blog post to get my thoughts on these topics.

In front of the class
Laptop Writing

See my for-credit artifacts on Chapters 2 and 7 here, detailing my interpretation of the core learning practices for online teaching and best practices for the early-middle phase of an online course.

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