Your Name and Title: Vicki Phillips
School, Library, or Organization Name: Rasmussen College
Area of the World from Which You Will Present: Tampa, Florida, USA
Language in Which You Will Present: English
Target Audience(s): High School, Community and 4 yr college English instructors
Short Session Description (one line): Engaging Literature students with VoiceThread presentations
Full Session Description
How do we, as instructors, infuse our classes with enthusiasm for literature which the 21st c student may not be familiar with or even be interested in reading as most selections are of a style that is sometimes regarded as difficult for the students to read and comprehend? Frequently, in college classes, the students have an assigned text and the readings in the anthology are those that have been pre-selected by the editors of the anthology. The selections are usually pieces done in the early to mid-part of the twentieth century by some of the best known American authors. Often, as instructors, we struggle with how to encourage our 21st century students to not only want to read the assigned material but also to want to add substantial comments to a discussion. Fortunately, I discovered Classroom 2.0 and then VoiceThread.com. By creating a VoiceThread to go with the accompanying assignment, I have found a way in which my students not only “get” the story, but they actually become more engaged and better readers and writers on the papers submitted in the class. Another unforeseen benefit was that students who were very reluctant to voice an opinion in class sometimes became much more comfortable voicing their opinion if it was incorporated with social media on a VoiceThread. If you are not familiar with the program, it allows the creator to upload media and add your voice to the media, then participants can choose to upload an avatar or a photo to represent them and then they comment by using their phone to call in a comment or by utilizing a computer’s webcam or some choose to just type in their comments in a text box that is accompanied by the avatar or photo they’ve chosen to insert. They can even use a “pen” icon to underline or make comments on the media that was uploaded. I have also utilized VoiceThreads by teaching my students how to use the program and allowing the students to create their own VoiceThread project in lieu of a final “traditional” type research paper on a significant author. The other students in the class then comment on their peer’s VoiceThreads and the learning just ricochets off from one student created project to the next. It has been an incredible experience, which I would be eager to share with the rest of my colleagues during this conference. Below is an example of one of my VoiceThreads on "The Things They Carried" by author Tim O'Brian and the student comments the story generated.
Websites / URLs Associated with Your Session: https://voicethread.com/?#u968628.b1185869.i6394573
I'm impressed with your use of VoiceThread for your lit class. I've started using VoiceThread in my online Spanish classes at Columbia College in Sonora, CA and I think it's a great tool, though I feel that I really need to refine my instructions and even perhaps my method of delivery to students, since it feels like there is uneven participation so far. I think it's great you're offering this session and I hope to be able to participate! VoiceThread is an amazing tool and I'm glad you're putting it out there for educators (and other people :)
Thanks, Teresa Borden
Great to hear that you are trying it out in the Spanish classes. I hope you can attend the live session. Maybe we can brainstorm some ideas as we hear from other instructors how they are using it in online classes. I look forward to seeing you in our session!