Teaching Students to Use Their Heads, Hands, and Hearts
after returning from NECC 2007, I was determined to align my curriculum to the new NETS•S
and embrace 21st-century skills. I
returned to school with a vision for
my Level 1 and AP Spanish classes: I
would infuse Web 2.0 tools into each
course and have students document
their learning with digital portfolios.
My students appreciated my humility when I told them that I embodied
the definition of a digital immigrant
and had spent the summer researching
methodology and cutting-edge technologies. My tech-perts jokingly said,
“Yeah, your picture is probably next
to the definition on Wikipedia,” while
other students furrowed their brows,
and I could read “What’s Wikipedia?”
on their faces. I knew at least one student did not know how to turn on a
First, we created our portfolios
using myeport.com, a free, secure
e-portfolio site. The students found
it very easy to use, and parents could
access it from any computer with Internet access. The site is password protected to ensure student privacy.
I was available to assist students, but
I never touched the mouse. I coached
them through the steps and would
always ask them to show me how to
do the same procedure before I left.
On the Spanish I e-portfolio home-page, I posted links to PowerPoint
instructions, Web 2.0 tools, and a host
of other tips that students could keep
open in separate windows.
As students built their e-portfolios,
they used some of my favorite Web 2.0
technologies. Here are some of the tools
they used for specific assignments.
AP Spanish students selected 10 images to describe the life of poet Sor Juana Ines de la
Cruz. Then they created a video set to a Latin soundtrack.
Animoto ( http://animoto.com). Allows
users to create a video using images
Spanish I—Select 10 images of “
fash-ionista nightmares” and create videos
in Animoto. Write a paragraph in this
format: “You should not wear ______,
AP Spanish VI—Who is the artista
known as Sor Juana Ines de la Cruz?
Select 10 images, pictures, or drawings to describe the life of this poet.
Cite your references. Next choose a
song from the Latin music selections.
Include the link to your video on myeport.com on the Sor Juana Animoto
page. Your video will be shown in class.
Write a blog post on myeport.com and
include two facts about her life and a
commentary about her poetry.
Bighugelabs ( http://bighugelabs.com/
flickr/ magazine.php). Allows users to
create magazine covers using Flickr
Spanish I—Create a restaurant and
give it a name. List food selections,
descriptions, price, etc.
AP Spanish VI—Tell us who you
are. Include a picture or image and
describe interests and hobbies. What
would the paparazzi tell me about you?
Blabberize ( http://blabberize.com). A free
tool that allows users to create talking
pictures by selecting an image and recording their own voice-overs.
Spanish I—Use the present-progressive verb tense twice.
By Lisa Bucciarelli
32 Learning & Leading with Technology | November 2009