Two TESOL Greece members awarded the 2013 IATEFL Learning Technologies SIG scholarship
If you thought that Greece is far behind in learning technologies compared to other countries, maybe you should reconsider.
Chryssanthe Sotiriou and Dimitris Primalis won the “Diane Eastment scholarship” and presented, on April 10th, at the 2013 IATEFL conference, their work titled “Literature strikes back! Teaching Literature with Technology”.
Paul Sweeney of the IATEFL Learning Technologies Special Interest Group introduced the speakers pointing out that their proposal showed a different approach to using technology in class.
Following a holistic approach, Dimitris and Chryssanthe believe that technology and literature are not foes but they can complement each other.
Technology can cater for different learning styles, it can be used initially to stimulate learners’ interest in literature and later on become the medium to create and produce language based on the literature the learners have read.
In the first part of their presentation, the Greek speakers raised awareness about the difference in genres and the way younger generations see long texts.
They both stressed the necessity to use technology as a Trojan horse in order to initiate students into the magic world of literature and lexis.
In the second part of the workshop, the participants were shown how familiar techniques can be used successfully in class with the aid of free material available on the internet.
Sequences of sounds, jigsaw activities with students working in groups of listeners and viewers according to their strengths can create real information gaps that stimulate their imagination,spark discussion and urge them to produce written and spoken language in anticipation of the plot and characters.
Literature and reading books need not be passive or individual tasks but can involve all the class in most creative and challenging tasks.
The social media and safe platforms like Edmodo can become a springboard for projects for teenagers while Web2.0 tools like Tagxedo and lino.it can stimulate project work for primary school pupils.
Dimitris and Chryssanthe shared their experience of how electronic books and videos can be fully exploited (an example of flipped classroom process).
In the third part, the attendants exchanged ideas and experience.
They all agreed that a technology-rich environment based on a well-structured methodology background can facilitate the reading experience and help students meet challenging standards while addressing essential questions that bring meaning to learning.