Lesson 2: Integrating the IPOD in Foreign Language Learning


Go Back to: ETAP 623 Spring 2014 Home or Rasmiya' Portfolio Page or Rasmiya' mini-course or Lesson 1: Why Integrate technology in the Foreign Language Classroom or Go to: Lesson 3: Social Media Learning Tools for the Foreign Language Classroom


The Ipod and Language Education: Making the Connection

More than four decades of method comparison research on effective second language teaching approaches has shown that students who are exposed to a greater quantity of comprehensible language in and out of the classroom have higher levels of language proficiency than students using different methodologies (such as grammar-translation, concurrent translation, and others). This has been shown at beginning, intermediate, and advanced levels in both traditional classrooms as well as in instruction using new digital media and associated technologies.

The iPod makes it possible to deliver large quantities of comprehensible language to students in an efficient and convenient manner. The main features of the iPod which you can use in the classroom are:

  • Audio - download songs in the foreign language and listen to audio books at various speeds
  • Video - play Video podcasts, music, films and television programs in the target language
  • Photos- use the photos to create digital storytelling projects
  • Games - download games which reinforce vocabulary and grammar

Best practices in teaching foreign and second language programs are based on these methods of making language comprehensible: • Slowing the rate of speech • Providing contextual support for language • Using vocabulary appropriate to the student’s level • Building on the student’s existing background knowledge • Fostering a comfortable environment • Encouraging identification with people who speak the target language • Creating a topic-driven rather than a grammar-based syllabus

The following tools can assist you in helping your students gain language proficiency.

  • Voicethread
  • Fotobabble
  • Storyboard
  • Sound Cloud

ImagesL8UDSHOA.jpgBluearrowbullet.gif ACTIVITY

1. Watch the following video of a high school Spanish classroom integrating the iPod in foreign language learning [
VIDEO: iPod in language classroom

2. Explain in 20 words or less the function of the iPod touch and its main features

If you were able to answer the questions move on to learn about Voice Thread

Voice Thread

  • VoiceThread is an interactive collaboration and sharing tool that enables users to add images, documents, and videos, and to which other users can add voice, text, audio file, or video comments. You can post your VoiceThread on your website or save it to an MP3 or DVD.
  • Have your students download their pictures from their ipod and create a digital storytelling activity. Students use their own voice and speak in the foreign language describing what they are doing in their pictures. This creates an opportunity to practice their speaking skills. Students can share their voicethreads and comment. They can comment by text (using keyboard), telephone, audio file and even webcam.



  • encourages collaboration and confidence when student sees their work posted
  • Students have time to reflect and think about the language before posting a comment
  • All students participate regardless of their level of language
  • language is strengthened because of practice in voice recordings

ImagesL8UDSHOA.jpgBluearrowbullet.gif VIDEO ACTIVITY

1. Watch the following 3 minute video which describes Voice Thread. After watching the video you will be answering questions. You can check your answers for comprehension after answering the questions


2. After viewing video, please answer the following questions.

  • What is Voice Thread?
  • How would Voice Thread benefit language learners?
  • What 4 types of media discussed in video can be used with Voice Thread
  • Does it work like a slideshow?
  • What type of ways can you post a comment on Voice thread?

3. Click here to check your answers' Voicethread


If you have answered the questions correctly move on to learn about Talking Photos Apps

Talking Photos


  • Both fotobabble and Blabberize are great for digital storytelling activities
  • demonstrating reading fluency
  • practicing vocabulary words
  • dictating a poem or story, or classroom presentations

Students take a foto then add an audio recording to it. Watch how students are using fotobabble in this short 3 minute video of a Spanish foreign language class. Fotobabble allows you to create a collection of talking photos and then present them as a narrated slides

click here to watch video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=61LLH0ykfHQ



You learned that fotobabble requires a picture and you can record over the picture wih your voice or any other audio recording. With Blabberize, students can take a photo and make a "mouth" for it, then add an audio recording, so it looks like the photo is speaking to you. The photo has a mouth moving and speaking what you recorded. Students have lots of fun with this. Use it to practice vocabulary, grammar or for presentations.

Watch how much fun students can have. Students can get creative with this tool! click here to watch video of George Washington speaking to you http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUnBb-gtX1E click here to watch 18 second cartoon blabberize being used in Spanish class for a song: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TUnBb-gtX1E

ImagesL8UDSHOA.jpgBluearrowbullet.gif ACTIVITY

1. Compare blabberize with Fotobabble. What is the difference? Can you use either one to accomplish language practice?

2. Read the following brief article comparing both and make a note of anything you missed http://www.engagingeducators.com/blog/2011/06/22/head-to-head-fotobabble-vs-blabberize/

3. Think about ways you can integrate these into your foreign language instruction

  • Use the Venn Diagram to compare and contrast and add your thoughts after learning about both and reading the article. Click here File:D venn2 2-download.pdf

Sound and Music



  • You can upload your own record audio tracks or record audio directly into the website
  • SoundCloud depicts audio tracks graphically as waveforms and allows users to comment on specific parts of the track (also known as timed comments). These comments are displayed while listening to the part of the sound they are referring to.

VIDEO: SoundCloud Intro

ImagesL8UDSHOA.jpgBluearrowbullet.gif ACTIVITY

1. Watch how the comments are displayed during the song Holdin On by Flume on Soundcloud. This is what you can do for your student listening assignments. [
VIDEO: Comment Feature

2. After seeing the comment feature, list 3 benefits of this feature in foreign language instruction.

Sign Up

  • SoundCloud - Free Account. You have 2 hours free.
  • allows you to have up to two hours of recordings stored in your account at one time. After that you need to either delete an old recording or log in to a paid plan
  • Log in: https://soundcloud.com/ to sign up
  • Click on this link for a 3 minute tutorial of soundcloud http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sL4IsZog12w

Foreign Language Benefits:

  • Student pronunciation and speaking practice for foreign language class
  • students record spoken tracks on Sound Cloud and share them with teacher.Teacher uses the comments feature to provide feedback that is tied directly to each student's recording. The comments could be tied to the exact second at which a student pronounces something incorrectly, uses the wrong verb form, or to praise a student for pronouncing a new word particularly well.
  • Time stamped comments within the recordings allow for unique collaboration and feedback
  • Teacher-uploaded listening assignments in music or foreign language class
  • Record facts, narration, stories, poems, etc. to then embed into Thinglink.com
  • Record podcasts directly to SoundCloud
  • SoundCloud also provides users with the ability to create and join groups that provide a common space for content to be collected and shared




Doodle Buddy is a fun app for vocabulary practice. Have students draw pictures of vocabulary, then have a partner guess what it is in the target language. Or you can use them as mini-white boards to have students write practice sentences on a given vocabulary/grammar topic. Just literally shake the iPod/iPad to clear the screen.

Check out the short 45 second video on doodlebuddy demo http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KcCre3LeItw

What makes Doodle Buddy so special?

  • Tons of stamps with funny sounds make it a blast
  • Doodle and stamp all over pictures from your Photo Album (or take a picture with your iPhone’s camera)
  • Draw with any Internet connected iPhone or iPod touch
  • Text chat back and forth with your drawing partner
  • Play hangman, tic-tac-toe and more on the included backgrounds

ImagesL8UDSHOA.jpgBluearrowbullet.gif ACTIVITY 1. Describe what DoodleBuddy is? 2. Where can you get it? 3. How does DoodleBuddy help reinforce vocabulary in the foreign language classroom?

Visual Storybooks


Click on the following link to see how storybird creates wonderful stories with beautiful artwork http://storybird.com/books/featured/

Sign in at:log on to http://storybird.com Choose a Teacher/Class for the account type. Once you create a teacher/class account you can use Storybird's free class tools to manage students, issue assignments, and build a library of beautiful stories

Teachers can include their feedback and classmates can comment on the created stories


  • Make read and share visual stories
  • Storybird is a service that uses collaborative storytelling to connect students, teachers, and families.
  • A student can create individual stories, work together in small groups, or as a class
  • Studentshave the option of sharing their Storybird privately or publicly on the network. The final product can be printed or viewed online
  • Storybird lets anyone make visual stories in seconds.
  • Storybook contains artwork from illustrators and animators around the world and inspire writers of any age to turn those images into stories.
  • The individual student can start a Storybird by finding an artist and then writing a story based off of that art
  • Storybook promotes imagination, literacy, and self-confidence.
  • The combination of art and word inspires the most reluctant writers to write stories.

ImagesL8UDSHOA.jpgBluearrowbullet.gif ACTIVITY 1 Group Reflection

  • Read the article, Teaching Foreign Language through Storytelling


  • After reading the article, reflect with your group how you are using Storytelling in your class. You have read how students benefit and capitalize from their own creative talents when using technology

1. Are you using technology to engage students in language learning?

2. Have you tried any form of digital storytelling to grab student interest and motivation, if so, which ones?

3. How are you making the reading process visual and engaging?

Discuss with your group, share ideas and post your thoughts on my Padlet click here: http://padlet.com/rruenes48/se0y611mogn6

  • Padlet is a tool you can use in your foreign language class to post on a wall. You can create your own account at padlet.com but for now post on my wall so we can all share and collaborate ideas.

ImagesL8UDSHOA.jpgBluearrowbullet.gif ACTIVITY 2 Create a story

  • You will be creating a story on Storybird.
  • Create a page of a story by selecting from the artwork designs provided
  • You can choose to write whatever you like or connect your writing to the story. Be creative!

You will be logging on to my account for instruction http://storybird.com/create/

  • Before you log on....

Step 1. Click on picture

Step 2 - Click Use this Art on top right

Step 3--Type your text the (+) indicates adds new page and (-) is delete the page

Step 4--When done. Click on Menu. Choose Save and Close. Click back button to return to course.

Choose to sign up with your own account at storybird.com

Go Back to: Lesson 1: Why Integrate technology in the Foreign Language Classroom

Go to: Lesson 3: Social Media Learning Tools for the Foreign Language Classroom


Using Voicethread in the World Language Classroom http://novastartalk.nvcc.edu/2012/04/using-voicethread-in-the-world-language-classroom/

Voicethread Digital library http://voicethread.com/about/library/

The iPod in Education. The Potential for Language Acquisition http://www.apple.com/education/docs/Apple-iPodLangAcquisition.pdf

Five Fantastic ways to use Fotobabble in the Classroom http://www.fotobabble.net/what-to-do-with-talking-photos-in-the-classroom/

Technology and language learning http://www.scoop.it/t/technology-and-language-learning

Technology Resources for teachers http://education.fcps.org/trt/soundcloud