Institute Agenda and Topics

subject to change!

General themes
Monday: Gathering and organizing information
Tuesday - Thursday: Authoring and designing learning experiences integrating technology
Friday: Sharing of lessons and ideas; community and relationship building

This page will guide and provide the springboard for our daily work!



gold_star.png Personal Introduction: My name is (name) and I teach (level and language). I am like a (object) because (your imagination required here).

Task - Use the Creative Commons search and find a visual representation of your object.
Did you know? In Firefox 3.0, Creative Commons search is one of the toolbar search options.

More on copyright Here are two interactive copyright activities: JISC uses scenarios and is more relevant to post-secondary; Cyberbee uses simple questions and answers. Technology & Learning Magazine has a great article about copyright and a handy chart (PDF).
Where can you find materials to use?
Creative Commons - an excellent starting point, where you can search popular sites for items that give permission for use.
Library of Congress - has terrific collections of artifacts

True Colors

gold_star.pngWhat kind of learners are we? And what does this have to do with technology?
Task - Take the True Colors Quiz. Stop when you reach the screen that has the visual bar graph chart. Write your name and your colors on an index card. For example:
John Smith
Orange: 10
Gold: 8
Blue: 12

Mary Miscisin's brief overview chart of these colors in the classroom and how best to communicate with specific colors are interesting and will help our discussion at the charts.

Want to read more? Jennifer Niskanen's True Colors Pages does a nice job describing the application of the colors in the classroom.

Gathering information

gold_star.png Who are you? Ever need to gather information about your students AND have it at your digital fingertips? Collect it through either a Google Docs Spreadsheet form or a Survey Monkey free survey. Let's collect a little information about our group!

Task - complete this form, located on a page here on this wiki called "Who are you?", and let's take a look at who is attending this institute!

If your students are going to collect and analyze data, here is a possible to evaluate their work.

Task - brainstorm ideas on using a Google form in the classroom.

Want to use Google Forms in your classroom? A Form is part of the Google Spreadsheet, which is part of Google Docs. You need a Google Account. You may use any email address as your login for a Google Account ID - and a confirmation will be required. Read more:
Setting up a Google Account ID:
Getting started with Google docs:

Take Google Forms one step further - turn your form into a self-grading activity (think quiz, exit ticket, quick comprehension check, etc.) - learn more with this 9 minute video tutorial.

Entering world language characters requires the use of ASCII characters - one option is to use ALT+ the number code you see on this table (scroll down for the extended character table).

Gmail address aliases (variations using "." or "+") - from gmail, or perhaps this explanation or this explanation,

Our Workspace - Our Wiki!

gold_star.pngUnderstanding and authoring in the wiki environment.

What's a wiki?
A wiki is a type of website where multiple authors can be designated to edit and create content. Wikis have discussion pages, history to view previous edits, and can be public, semi-private, or private.

CommonCraft created a video that explains how a wiki works:

Ah-Bon French middle school wiki
Bishop Blog Wiki is a high school Spanish teacher's wiki
David Warlick's CoLearners shows how a presenter can put presentations, notes, handouts, and invite participants.
Dorman Data Digest is a history or social studies teacher's wiki
FrauLyon high school German wiki
LanguageLinks2006 and specifically the Intern Level Methods shows how wikis can be an interactive tool for World Language Methods courses
Mme Mina Kim, French Teacher, has a fantastic wiki.
Mme Thomas French class wiki
SpartaFrancais - French class wiki
Youth Wiki is a collaborative project across several schools
Wanglaoshi Wiki Chinese K-1 wiki

Discuss: What features did you find?

Task. Let's get started! Refer to this handout!
If you have a account, then login and "Request to join" this wiki.
If you don't have a account, then go to

So if students are creating wikis, how can you assess them? Vicki Davis has a wiki grading rubric and Read*Write*Think has a wiki rubric and interesting lesson on protest songs.

Ready to start your own wiki? Visit this page to get the advertisement-free wikispace or click the image below.
external image teacher2.php
external image teacher2.php

And, need help? Check out the video tours of Wikispaces to learn how to begin editing your page, add images and media, and personalize your space.

The main page of the Wikispaces Help has quite an array of help topics to chose from.
For more specific information that has been asked for by teachers, it can be found in the Teachers Section of the Wikispaces help. There are a few more resources about halfway down the page under heading number 8 (a couple PDFs and PowerPoints)

Students as creators

1. 2008 Latest Edition - Did You Know 3.0 - From Meeting in Rome this Year

2. A Vision of K-12 Students Today

On the American Psychological Association website there is a brief article about Bloom’s taxonomy. The website briefly discusses the original Bloom’s as well as recent iterations of the past 8 years. An interesting diagram is the Cognitive Taxonomy Circle developed by Clark (2002). This visual can provide ideas on products students can create and produce.


Can you identify how the activities and products of the Cognitive Taxonomy Circle relate to the three modes of communication? Can the products above go across the different modes? Can they be used in assessment (both formative and summative)?


Digital Storytelling

This external image msword.png storyboard template.doc will be a useful planning tool regardless of which digital storytelling tool you select.

A. Voki Allows you to create an avatar and give it voice.

B. VoiceThread

Digital storytelling with the ability to have text, audio, video, or doodle commentary on each slide. You must have a VoiceThread account in order to create or comment.

You can set preferences to allow others to comment as well. VoiceThread is an interesting, easy to use web-based environment for digital storytelling and there is an education portal.

Langwitchesdescribes how she used it with her students and how to get started.

(Linked examples:)

(Embedded example: Added by using the super-secret embed code!)

This quick start guide can get you started!

Like VoiceThread? Here is a VoiceThread Ning you could consider joining!

Think VoiceThreads is a wiki created by educators on the PBwiki platform - great ideas there too!

C. Comic/Poster/Page Generators

These tools allow the user to upload or add content, and personalize it. The end product is often embeddable as well.

Comiqscan easily pull in your flickr photos.
Glogster allows you to create posters
Pikistrips allow you to create comic strips from your photos.
Scrapblog takes scrapbooking online.
Toondooallows you to create your own comic characters and comic strips.
Xtranormal is a web-based animated movie-making environment
Make Beliefs Comix

D. BubblePLY

Allows you to add speech and thought bubbles to any online video. The teacher can draw students' attention to specific features of a video clip. Students can use their language skills to comment on the content of the video by inserting text, graphics, or analysis - they create their own mash-up! Here is an example around the infamous First Semester Spanish Love Song.

E. Prezi

Tired of PowerPoint? Prezi is a tool that allows the user to create multimedia presentations that are more reminiscent of concept maps. Learn more about Preziand if you are seeking something new and different, Prezi is for you! The key to Prezi is to (1) have all your content gathered and organized graphically (think sticky notes and shuffling them around) and (2) understanding that "paths" help set the order of the presentation!

And here is a Prezi about blogsand a student-created Prezi about animals. Keep clicking the forward arrow to proceed through the Prezi - notice all the kinds of media embedded in Prezi. Here is David Warlick's Convergence: A perfect storm for Change, a Prezi he used on June 19, 2009 with Texas School Board members

F. Wordle

Wordle creates word clouds. This is a neat tool - one idea for world language educators is to take a reading in the target language, paste the text into Wordle, thus creating a word cloud of the high frequency words for the text selection. Here is a Wordle based on an article from El País. Imagine how this Wordle could be used as a pre-reading activity!


Hint: after you create your Wordle, capture the screen and crop your image down to the Wordle, save as a JPG and you are ready to embed!

This afternoon we will work together to review the information and think about how these tools can be integrated into teaching and learning. This process will (1) help you review and recall the potential applications of these tools as well as better prepare you to create the NJ DOE required documents, and (2) as you are expected to turn-key pieces of this workshop with others, this process will prepare you for discussion with your colleagues!

Another survey tool

gold_star.pngGathering information in new ways

Do your students have cell phones? Use Poll Everywhere - students can text message their response. Here is the same poll as was in the initial powerpoint. As you can see there are two views: web-based voting and cell phone texting-based voting. If you didn't vote before, vote now!

Web Voting Widget - click here to vote
Results Chart Widget - use the info below to text and see the results as they come in

Additional information regarding pricing from Poll Everywhere's FAQs:
Our basic plan is free. It allows up to 30 votes per poll. The free plan includes really great features: PowerPoint polls, web voting, widgets, downloadable results, and more. Check out our paid plans if you need more votes per poll or advanced features. K-12 Teachers: We tried to make our free plan useful for you. If you teach the same subject multiple times per day, remember that you can download the results and also clear the results for any poll to reuse it with a different class. Poll Everywhere is free for Title I schools who have not made Adequate Yearly Progress. Email us to set up a school-wide account for all teachers.

Task - Create a poll and embed the web voting widget onto your wikipage.
Hint - you must first set up an account at Poll Everywhere, then create a new poll and look for the HTML embed code - which you will insert into the wikipage using the embed widget button and then select "Other HTML" You may also embed the results widget if you choose - I inserted the two above on this page using a table to make them appear side by side.

CHOICE! Complete this doodle poll - place a check mark under the technologies that interest you for activity development purposes!

Creating Community

1. Microblogging

A. Edmodo

edmodo is like Twitter, but designed for the education community. Privacy is ensured, and teachers can create groups (for example, by class periods or grade level) to easily direct posts to the appropriate group(s). The student only sees the posts belonging to his or her group(s). In addition, you can attach documents and embed objects :-).

edmodo:what students think has some interesting thoughts and examples and edmodo:Microblogging (and more) for educators provides additional insight. Here is what a middle school Language Arts teacher experienced.

edmodo documentation guide is available.

B. Twitter

Twitter is the granddaddy microblogging application. I have bookmarked many Twitter resources over on my Delicious account. I use Tweetdeck to help me sort my Twitter friends. Find educators to follow at Twitter4Teachers!

2. Ning

Ning is a social networking tool, like facebook. You can set up a closed community. Ning's terms of service indicate the user must be over 13 years of age. the owner of the Ning can control the available features. Classroom 2.0 Ning may be of interest to you!

Here is a link created by participants from last year's technology institute.