I’ve been using wordpress for a month now, and once again I’ve learned that learning happens. When I first started I was totally lost as to how this blogging engine works. It’s completely different from blogger. Now i’ve learned what the best template is if you want your pages to be easily seen and organized. I’ve also found a very easy way to share my lessons and videos. All I need now is an embeddable (?) audio application, and i’ll be happy as a clam.
Sharing my grammar blog through Twitter and Facebook has increased traffic amazingly. Social networking apps really work!
On the downside, though, I’ve re-learned that you can’t make a blog interactive just by wishing ppl would participate. i’m still waiting for my students to post questions, comments, videos, or anything that would make the grammar blog theirs as well as mine ūüė¶

Estava olhando o blogger hoje e resolvi checar a sério os blogs que eu já usei. Foram 20 desde 2001, com resultados MUITO diferentes:
CCM Study Group 2007 – com professores (professional development) – n√£o rolou: o blogger era bloqueado no trabalho
1 postagem, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 26/04/2007

learning adventures – pessoal – tb n√£o rolou
1 postagem, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 03/03/2007

A42001 Рcom alunos Рfoi muito interessante Рa participação foi 10!
229 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 14/04/2006

The Storm Center – I’m only happy when it rains – com outros professores – muito bom tb. campe√£o absoluto de participa√ß√Ķes
575 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 13/04/2006

Grammar 2005 Рcom alunos (TTC) Рeles não acharam a menor graça
1 postagem, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 30/03/2005

Grammar 1540 Рtb com alunos do TTC Рsó as meninas participaram e levaram adiante qdo o semestre acabou
82 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 26/12/2004

Phonology 0900 РTTC também Рnot very successful
13 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 22/07/2004

Phonology 0940 РTTC também Рnot very successful
15 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 30/05/2004

Fluency Improvement РTTC também Рnot very successful
14 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 25/05/2004

Phonology 2000 РTTC também Рnot very successful at all
3 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 12/04/2004

Grammar 2000 – com alunos – not very successful
3 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 12/04/2004

Advanced One 2004 – com alunos – total washout
1 postagem, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 29/03/2004

siliconguys Рcom alunos Corporate Рalguma participação
20 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 23/10/2003

Conversation Blog Рcom alunos Рalguma participação
9 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 29/08/2003

A2-2003 – com alunos – total washout
1 postagem, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 18/08/2003

weapons of mass instruction :)) Рcom outro professor, mas ele odeia internet (ou pelo menos odiava na época)
1 postagem, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 04/08/2003

fast advanced 2 great communication gaya – participei como “ouvinte” – grande participa√ß√£o do Gaya e seus alunos
86 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 07/07/2003

Pre Test Forum Рcom alunos Рfoi muito interessante Рa participação foi 10!
237 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 22/12/2002

Community Day at IBEU :o) Рcom outros professores Рparticipação kinda low
11 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 06/10/2002

First Cohort Рcom outros professores Рparticipação kinda low Рfoi qdo aprendi o que era um blog
38 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 29/06/2002

Professional Development Feedback – com outros professores – cohort days
54 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 28/05/2002 ‚Äď

bRaIn, R u pOnDeRiNg wHaT i’m pOnDeRiNg? – pessoal – cohort days – not great
10 postagens, √ļltima publica√ß√£o em 09/12/2001

chunks – collocations – useful language: essas op√ß√Ķes est√£o me mostrando um caminho mais pr√°tico para ajudar os alunos a apender a lingua em si em vez de aprender “sobre ela”. temos que usar isso de maneira mais consistente, eu acho, e sem esquecer que o foco inclui meaning and use. form √© importante, obviamente, mas nisso j√° focamos muito mais que o necess√°rio.

pensar que usar outra lingua é uma mudança de cultura pro aluno, assim como pensar em uma outra forma de ensinar é uma mudança de cultura para o professor . toda mudança traz um certo desconforto. as pessoas em geral preferem o que já conhecem.

como mudar a cultura? experimentar mais e ver onde chegamos? como “vender” essa id√©ia?

Depois de tanta conversa sobre blogs & etc, fiquei com vontade de brincar com o WordPress tamb√©m. Engra√ßado como qualquer mudan√ßa de cultura da trabalho. Eu tava acostumada com o blogger e aqui tudo √© diferente, obviamente. De vez em quando me pego reclamando, que nem meus alunos perguntando pq ingl√™s tem que ser t√£o diferente de portugues.¬† E por falar em portugues, essa √© outra mudan√ßa complicada: tou t√£o acostumada a pensar sobre trabalho em ingl√™s que parece que eu sou outra pessoa quando uso portugues. Fico ENLOUQUECIDA com os acentos, as palavras soam estranhas, como se fosse uma tradu√ß√£o mal feita. A√≠ tamb√©m √© que ta a gra√ßa, claro. Estou come√ßando mais uma vez e tenho muito pra aprender, e muita coisa com que me acostumar ūüôā

Em homenagem ao meu passado bloggeiro e às tentativas anteriores de criar uma comunidade de prática, postei aí embaixo conversas com outros professores em outra lingua e em outro tempo.

Sunday, November 04, 2001

Though I wanted this blog here to be like a bulletin board for teachers to exchange ideas and stuff, I don’t think it’s working that way at all. Maybe people think this is MY page or maybe it’s just the nature of Blogs.
I’ve tried this with all my groups and it’s mostly been a huge flop too, except with A4, where we have written something like 70 posts since Sept 23, and today Barb wrote saying she hopes we keep it going after graduation. What is it about us as a group that makes that Blog different, I wonder.
Maybe it’s not us as a group at all, but simply the fact that most people in A4 (me included) are used to spending hours online anyway, and the blog has become just like any other site to pay a quick visit to among all the other internet things we do.
Capra, the student who made me think of creating a class page in the first place, has his own Blog; Thaiany is thinking about starting one for herself; Fernando writes for a page called Brasil Independente; Marcelo just had Ajato installed. I guess using the internet IS like second nature to this group.
Gaya’s told me his blogs have been a success as well, but he’s using them in a totally different way. To him and his groups, the blog is the place where homework is posted and corrected, which is a very cool idea, I think, but which would never work with my dear A4. It’s funny how those guys are always willing to do a lot of different things AS LONG AS those things don’t look or feel like “schoolwork”. I guess I must have taught them more than English :)))
Having said that, though, I must confess at first the teacher in me wanted to print weekly posts and bring them to class for correction, but after talking to Bebel and some other people, I decided not to do that. Instead, I think I’m gonna save all the posts to see if there is any progress in fluency and vocab and structure along the semester. Maybe I can write a paper or something about that.
One thing I definitely want to find out is if the way I write influences the way my students write in any way and if they influence one another as well. That would be an interesting line of research, I think.

I’m so excited about using stations for review I can hardly wait to teach that class
Hope it goes well or I’ll get REAL pissed
(I know I shouldn’t THINK, let alone SAY a thing like that, but I’m only huiman and I can’t help it)
will let you know as soon as I’m done
even if anninha is the only one listening
yeah buddy, not only will you hear it all in the processing-session-as-we-drive-home, but u’ll also have to see it here
as u seem to be the only one posting/reading stuff on this blog.
maybe we could use this as a dialog journal so we don’t forget these
paranoid cohort days
think about it

Well, I’ve done it!!!!
At two o’clock (A2) it was sooooooooooooo cool tho I only had 3 students (out of 5) in class.
Fe and Bia worked together and spoke English ALL THE TIME and helped each other and generally had a GR8 time. It was very cool to hear Bia say at least a thousand times “I love this review class”
I had 8 stations for A2: Causative, Passive, Metaphors, Vocab, Participials, Listening (with my walkman),Across the Ionosphere, and Feedback. There were 2 activities per station and my idea was for people to either do a bit of each activity and then move on, or do one of them and get a copy of the other and do it at home later. As Murphy would have it, tho, it didn’t turn out that way. The girls wanted to do EVERYTHING, which meant they stayed there for 2 hours rather than 75 minutes. Of course that’s a GOOD thing, but it only worked out well because I have a break after their class and they also have time to stay on.
I don’t think the review worked OK for Bruno tho. He was late for class and had to work on his own, and being the shy and quiet guy that he is, he didn’t ask either me or the girls for help. I might say “That’s his problem – HE was late, HE didn’t want to ask for help” but somehow I don’t feel that comfortable knowing that my weakest student was the one who got the least help and support on the day before the test.
The A4 Stations worked in a totally different way
10 students were present (out of 11) so I had the chance to observe a lot of different strategies at work. Some people worked alone, some worked in pairs all of the time, and some worked either in pairs or alone depending on the activity.
I had 8 stations for A4 as well: Reported speech, Wish, Participials, Vocab, I see you never, The Blog Thing, Listening, and Feedback.
Some people used a lot more Portuguese than they should have, and at times that really pissed me off.
I was happy tho to see that most of them were having fun and working at the same time, and the feedback was GR8, except for one student who said she “would pay more attention to a traditional review than to this kind of class”
I suppose some people NEED a very controlled environment in order to feel comfortable in class and these people must hate being my students. The student who prefers a traditional review is the same one who said I should “force them to be more serious in class” and “bring exercises LIKE IN THE TEST”.
Tho I was not too happy about her fedback, I do feel sorry for her cause I can see how badly she misses Regina Lucia
Maybe I should have asked her to transfer to Pat’s class right at the beginning as I”m sure she would have been much happier there and would have learned a lot more in her final year at IBEU.
So, how do I feel about using stations?
Does it work for everyone?
I don’t think so.
Why not?
I think some students need more guidance than others and traditionally they haven’t been prepared to work independently or to be responsible for their own learning.
Is it their fault that they’re not preapred for that??
Not really. I think that might have a lot to do with their learning styles and with the way our schooling system is structured.
Is it my fault?
Partially. I should know you can’t all of a sudden change things students have been used to since they first BECAME students
What can I do about that?
I think the issue of student and teacher behavior, styles, and responsibilities should be the VERY FIRST topic to be addressed when a new semester starts.
I don’t want to be the one who sets all the rules – USE ENGLISH ALL THE TIME – DO YOUR HOMEWORK – STUDY FOR THE TEST – PAY ATTENTION TO CLASS – WRITE 5 COMPOSITIONS – DON’T BE ABSENT – PARTICIPATE IN CLASS – and reinforces them by giving high or low grades and lecturing students on their poor behavior and/or achievement
Especially when it comes to more advanced levels, I’d like students to know that as far as language goes, WHAT YOU DO IS WHAT YOU GET and most of the time A1 to A4 students are old enough and experienced enough to see what they need help with.
What strategies can I use?
I think I should start by discussing the issue and then I should start delegating responsibilities step by step
Am I sure of success?
No, I’m not, but i believe I am here to learn just as much as my students are

marcinha October 2001