Using GarageBand, Explain Everything, Book Creator and Google Translate in Modern Foreign Languages
By Nick Acton
It’s no secret. We’re not all brought up to be dual-lingual in England. Learning a language is not as integral to us as it may be in many other countries. Of course, English is an additional language for some and many schools do incredible work to help EAL pupils. However, grasping another language is simply not a necessity for many children. With that over riding fact ringing in their ears, some pupils do not place importance on indulging this area of the curriculum. This is coupled with the fact that most teachers have limited linguistic skills. The lack of enthusiasm from the children, mixed with a teacher’s own knowledge gaps can make MFL become MF-hell to teach.
This blog aims to tackle some of the issues I have just raised. Language learning has to be met with engaging and entertaining lesson objectives that include innovative approaches from the teacher. The iPad can be the perfect tool to employ when trying to achieve this high standard. Combining apps to enhance lingual learning can really bring multi-media MFL magic into the classroom. Smashing all sorts of language apps into the Book Creator app is just one way of doing this! I plan to create a ‘School Talk’ language book that translates key school resources and aspects of day-to-day education into French.
I think that all of the tools I have used to offer a certain level of engagement. They are interesting and intuitive tools that can spice up an MFL lesson. Google Translate can provide a very positive lifeline to a child who is endeavouring to learn independently. Crucially, however, it can also help a teacher when they lose their way within Language teaching. GarageBand can encourage language speaking in a new way. Explain Everything caters for different types of learners by combing auditory, visual and kinaesthetic elements. Book Creator is an incredible place for all that learning to end up. Not only can it collate the app work that has been engaged with throughout an entire project, it can also enhance that work by bringing its own features to the table. Exploring these applications in the name of Modern Foreign Languages should keep enthusiasm at a high and provide a valuable linguistic backbone for a teacher to use whenever necessary.
Nick Acton is an Apple Curriculum Specialist at JTRS as well as being a part-time Computing and Music teacher. Through the creation of bespoke training, Nick specialises in empowering educators so they can embed Apple technologies into their day-to-day classroom practice.