York Show&Tell 1st June 2013

I was one of the people who volunteered to present a quick slot at Suzi Bewell’s Show&Tell event in York today.

I shared a few ideas for using song in the classroom, and here are some links to the things I mentioned.

  • Firstly, there’s the ‘Adapting Familiar Tunes’, where we sang the time in German to the tune of Eastenders.
  • Then I referred to LyricsGap, a site where there are ready-made exercises in several languages, but where you can also customise your own based on the lyrics.

LyricsGap

  • For Germanists, there’s this great website where a guy called Alex creates videos of popular songs which he’s translated into German. One of my current favourites is Preisschild, a version of Jessie J’s Price Tag. You can find some activities to go with the video on this site.
  • I also referred to a post I wrote having seen Greg Horton speak at Language World earlier this year. Greg had some more excellent ideas for using song – take a look and feel free to get in touch if you want more of an explanation.
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Geoguessr

I posted a link to this site on Facebook earlier this week, and said it was a bit addictive.  It really is!

Geoguessr is a website which uses Google Maps.  You get ‘placed’ somewhere in the world, and you have to work out where you are.  You can pick up clues from things such as buildings, vegetation, landscape, weather, and even the side of the road cars are driving on.  Occasionally you can find a word, signpost or flag which helps.  Once you’ve decided roughly where you think you are, you drop a pin into a world map, and see how close you were.  You get five ‘goes’ in each round.  It’s amazing how much two places thousands of miles apart can look like each other!

GeoGuessr

I’ve kept coming back to the site over the last few days, wondering if it could be used for language teaching at all.  I don’t think it’s perfect, because as a teacher you don’t really have enough control over what appears, but it does have some possibilities, such as:

  • describing what pupils see in front of them
  • giving opinions on what they see
  • justifying those opinions (I think it could be …. because ….)
  • comparing what they see to places they have been or seen before

It could also be a good tutor-time filler.   Or it can just take up your own free time – as I said, it’s addictive!