Blending Technology and Task-Based Learning in the ESL Classroom

Calls for greater integration of technology into the classroom are increasing (Sharma & Barrett, 2007), and task-based classrooms, in their dynamism, provide an ideal springboard for just such blended learning experiences. With its focus on learner-controlled topic development and communicative nature, task-based learning (TBL) can motivate learners and create a classroom environment where students are encouraged to take linguistic risks (Ellis, 2003). Being goal-oriented (Willis, 1996), TBL provides students with opportunities to realise their learning outcomes in an interactive and collaborative manner, in this case, via the aid of relevant educational technology tools.
Beginning the session, workshop participants will initially be given an understanding of how an ‘advertising’ video production task is contextualised within an ESL Intermediate-level course. The presenters will then review the three stages of the task (pre-, during-, and post-task). The different task stages integrate various forms of multimedia, with students using Google Drive Documents, Microsoft PowerPoint, and video software programs to develop, and ultimately present and pitch, an original product of their creation, before voting on which of their classmates’ products best meet certain criteria such as ‘most innovative’ or ‘most realistic’.

The session will be of interest to teachers seeking to ‘blend’ their students’ learning experience more through increasing their – and their students’ – use of educational technology. During the workshop, participants will discover a task that combines the experiential nature of TBL with relevant technological platforms, and then learn how this kind of task could be adapted within their own learning environments.

Audiences: High School

Level: beginner,intermediate,advanced

Workshop Session 1
Location: Room 106 Date: March 12, 2016 Time: 9:45 AM - 10:45 AM Juliet Diane Markis