Small details do matter
I was adding one more flag to the row of flags when I realised that students would be able to find the names of the countries by simply right-clicking the flags and choosing edit. While they might not do this, it was a possibility and would spoil the fun. So, I quickly took copies of the original flags and then changed the names of the ones I had set up.
Crashing students and a bit of lag
These are the usual ingredients of SL classes. So nothing unusual happened in this lesson.
Number of students…
fluctuates highly (this time I forgot to send reminders, too). One student had forgotten about the class but was in SL. He said he can join us but cannot use voice because his wife was sleeping in the same room 🙂 These are things online and Second Life teachers and learners have to deal with 🙂 This is why I had the students work together as one group or as individuals.
What went well?
Everything actually. The lesson plan was kept simple and allowed for a relaxed slower paces lesson than the past, two. I also “leaned back” a bit and allowed students for space to express themselves freely. I kept instructions to a minimum and let them work out the details by communicating with each other.The students seemed to appreciate this and group dynamics were great.
Although students arrived late, there was enough time for all stages as I hadn’t packed the lesson plan with activities but planned in lots of time for the game and discusions. In addition to that, only few students came to this lesson so that had plenty of time to for the discussions.
We were joint by two onlookers. I invited them to join and help my students. They were very interested but were French and couldn’t speak English.
In class, I also refrain now from correcting too quickly. I’ve realised that the stronger students help the weaker ones and type corrections when I take my time before correcting. Ex: We were reviewing countries and nationalities at the end of class. One student had to type in a country name and another the nationality.. One student typed “France” and another typed “Franch” as nat. A third student corrected, copying the way I corrected someone before, typing “Fr..nch”.
Update, 19 July 2008
Beware of cheaters 🙂
In one stage, I had planned for pairs of students to practise countries and nationalities by standing on different sides of the notecard displayer, one student facing it and quizzing the other. It is important to know, that students could cheat here. Using camera controls, they could be standing on one side but looking at the other 🙂 I wish we had had that when I was in RL school 😉
Update, 24 July 2008
Students learned a lot of new words and it was the right level for everybody. One student says they didn’t practise speaking enough and states sound issues as reason. Best activity according to several students was rying to find the countries the flags belong to because it required a lot of movement so it was fun. What one student didn’t like in this lesson was the fact that the number of attendants in this lesson (four) was small.