Monthly archives: December, 2017

Annotate images with speech bubbles

Phrase.it (http://phraseit.net/) is a very simple tool that allows users to add speech bubbles to images. This could be useful for having students label vocabularywrite an imaginary dialogue based on visual clues, or create a description of an image. Because it’s so quick and easy to use, it would also make a great tool for creating visuals for in-class use.

Images can be uploaded from your computer or Facebook, or you can opt for a random stock photo. Phrase.it creations can be either downloaded or shared via a link.  No account is required and your images can be saved as unlisted so they’re only available through a direct link, making it a safer choice for classroom use than Snapchat.


More Tech Successes!

We’re excited to share another Tech Success Story with you! Three German PhD students – Christina Mekonen, Julia Koxholt, and Zachary Fitzpatrick – share their success using Video Essays in German 217 (Introduction to German Cinema). This is a great project that the group recently presented at ACTFL 2017 in Nashville. Click here to learn more: http://lclc.uic.edu/stories-and-ideas/success-stories/german_grads/


Quickly and easily collect video responses

Recap (https://letsrecap.com/) is a free web- and mobile-based tool that allows teachers to easily collect video responses from students. With Recap, you simply ask a question (or several questions) via text or video, select a time limit for the response video (up to 2 minutes), and assign it to your class. Students join your class via a PIN and can sign in with Google. Students record their video directly in Recap (using a webcam or mobile device) and it’s automatically added to your class dashboard for your review. When you give feedback, students are notified automatically by email.

You can also add a self-assessment at the end of your Recap assignment for students to tell you how they think they did. This makes it a great tool for checking student pronunciation, vocabulary, and general speaking ability. Other possible instructional uses might include collecting student responses to course material like readings and videos, or having students explain new grammatical concepts (in English) in their own terms to demonstrate comprehension.

Because Recap focuses on speaking and not writing, it can be a great tool for helping students who may have trouble with spelling and written grammar feel more confident expressing themselves.