Storybird

storybird websiteYou might be familiar with Storybird, where you or your students can create your own story books using lovely works of art.

Well if you are a fan, get comfy with your favourite beverage if you teach German, French, Italian or Spanish, and browse this great wiki where teachers share the Storybirds they have created.

Even if you don’t teach these languages, it is a great source of inspiration!

Innovative listening items

For those of you that can’t make it to the TeachMeet for Languages today, here is my presentation:

Want to know more? Click on the links below to go to the mentioned sites:

Audacity®

TraitR

Languages Online

Watch as I make a YouTube and Google Docs form listening item

Would you like a full day workshop exploring these ideas and more?

VoiceThread

VoiceThread is a website that allows you to upload images to start a conversation. You and others can add comments by phone, webcam, microphone, text, or file upload. You can choose whether to share the VoiceThread with just a few contacts, or make it public. It is best to choose sharing with contacts only, or to moderate all comments in an educational setting. You can even embed your VoiceThread in your own blog.

Tagxedo

fruits in japaneseTagxedo is a word cloud generator. You can load a file, submit a webpage or enter your own text. Change the colour theme, font, orientation, layout and shape. The more times each word is entered, the larger it appears in the word cloud. Tagxedo word clouds are interactive – mouse over each word and the word pops up. Click on the words and a Google search of that word loads. You can save the completed Tagxedo as an image, or get the link to email, or code to embed in your blog. I recommend you embed this or save the link before you leave the site, otherwise you can’t find your created word clouds within the site.

Kanji search online

Ever stumbled upon a kanji that you don’t know, and not being sure of the radical, you are finding it hard to look it up in a dictionary? Well, now there is a place online where you can draw the kanji with your mouse and the site will suggest possible kanji, linked to Jim Breen’s dictionary. Yipee! Check out handwritten kanji recognition.

Kerpoof

Kerpoof is a suite of online multimedia software to create original artwork, animated movies, stories, greeting cards and more. It is owned by the Walt Disney company and has a section dedicated for educators. Check out the teachers’ guide, provided lesson plans or dive straight in at http://www.kerpoof.com/
Scripted languages work in Make a movie and Make a picture but not in the other sections. However, you can use the pencil in Tell a story to draw the script and use the text box below to enter the meaning – a nice way for students to build their own kanji/hanzi reference book. You can also use script by using Create a doodle in Make a card to draw your message using the pen.

ToonDoo

ToonDoo is an online comic-creating tool. You can sign up for free, or pay for an educational version.

To create comics in foreign languages, simply choose the text bubble that looks like this:

Find these and other great manga style characters under the ‘special’ tab (indicated by stars) in the ToonDoo maker.

This site also has the option to create your own cartoon characters, calledTraitR. What a fun way to explore describing what people look like in other languages. Students could create their own characters, then describe what they look like, or create a character from the description the teacher provides. Students could use it for self description too, as you can upload a photo as a reference – I had lots of fun creating a cartoon of myself!