How to successfully teach Languages via video conference

More and more, schools are harnessing the power of technology to provide their students with Language learning opportunities, that would have been otherwise impossible. Schools are connecting classes to run elective classes that have too few numbers to run independently, or to share the expertise of a Language teacher with other schools that do not have a qualified teacher for a particular language, as well as connecting their students with overseas students.

 Teaching Languages via video conference is most successful when:
* The teachers are highly adept at operating the equipment
* The delivering teacher is well presented, vibrant and energetic
* The delivering teacher has developed a rapport with the students and receiving teacher
* The receiving teacher participates enthusiastically – engagement is contagious!
* The lesson materials are of the highest intellectual quality – visually stimulating and sufficiently challenging
* The lesson includes a variety of activities emphasising student participation
* The lessons are followed up with consolidation lessons in the classroom and learning activities, that students complete independently.

NSW Curriculum and Learning Innovation Centre has released a professional learning resource to support schools considering a blended learning program:

Putting a teacher in front of a camera and linking to a class is not enough. The best lessons are created by a team of consultants, directors, principals, teachers, parents and students working together. A committed team and investing time in professional learning and material development ensure success.

Do you teach via video conference? What do you think is essential for success? Leave a comment below.

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ACARA Australian Curriculum: Languages update

ACARA has released the languages for which Australian Curriculum will be developed by the end of 2013. One language (can you guess which one?) will have all three learner pathways developed (background language learner, first language learner and second language learner). For the other languages listed, only one pathway will be developed by end of 2013 – either a background language learner or second language learner pathway.

Consultation on the draft F-10 curriculum for Chinese and Italian second language learner pathways will occurr from September 2012. Be sure to have your say – the future of language learning in Australia is in your hands.

You can read more at the ACARA website.