Unit Two: Design and Use of Avatars
Upon completion of this unit, you will be able to effectively manage and make further use of your Voki (avatar).
Yeah, way to go! Now, are you ready to create your own avatar? Well, let me show you how:
You are going to log in using your email and password. Once you are logged in, you are going to click on CREATE on the top left. There are two steps in the process of the design and use of the avatars:
I Create your speaking character (avatar)and add your voice
There are two steps in the design of the avatar:
•First you will get to customize the look of your avatar as you want. To give your character a look, you have several and a great variety of options to choose from eyes and hair color, and clothing, to background. You can always change things but make sure you save what you like by clicking on DONE every time you want to save something and click on PUBLISH when you are satisfied with the look of your character. Again, you can edit your avatar as many times you want.
•Second you will add a voice to your character. Here you have 4 options as follows:
1. To record by phone, which takes you to a new window with a phone number and code to use.
2. Text to speech, where you can simply type what you want your character to say (It is how I gave the voice to mine).
3. Record with microphone, where you can actually record your voice by using your computer right there at that moment after you click on the option that will take you to an Adobe Flash Player settings window and after you allow it to access your camera and microphone, you are ready to go and record your voice.
4. Upload an audio file, where you can use a recording you already have saved in a file.
Are you already feeling you want to go ahead and create your own speaking character? Then, let’s don’t wait and click here please http://www.voki.com/create.php
II Publish and share
Underneath you avatar, you have the option to Publish your Voki. By clicking there, you will get into a new opened window where you have options to select the size that you want your Voki to be sent in, and an embed code that you can grab and post into your site. As you will see, there are several web sites listed there where you can choose from. Besides posting it in, you also have the chance to bookmark it or get your Voki link that you can copy and paste on your browser address bar.
You also have the option to share your Voki by sending it to a friend by email. If you choose to do this, all you have to do is click on SEND TO A FRIEND right underneath your Voki (avatar) and you will be prompted to a window where you can fill in with the information such as your recipient’s email address. You also have a chance to write a message of up to 250 characters to go with.
Here is a tutorial video on the creation and publishing of your avatar. Please click here http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tHza_R6c3WU
Now that you are ready to make use of your own creation, and still wonder how you can incorporate it in your classroom, let's remember that there is an endless number of ways you can use Voki in instruction. Voki may seem most apparently in Foreign Language instruction since it significantly enhances language teaching and learning by allowing every member of the class to get deeply motivated and engaged in the digital world as they get to practice their language skills and participate as a member of a learning community. And as we know, technology has gained most of our 21th century students’ attention, so why not to take advantage of using what they really like and are good at? And keeping in mind that not many students feel they should be taking a foreign language class or they are never going to need it, thus unmotivated to learn. So, let's highlight the most commonly uses of Voki:
•Students can use their personalized avatar as they represent themselves.
•Students can create their own avatars and practice their writing, reading, speaking, and listening skills on the target language.
•Students can use their Voki in an unlimited way. For example, they can use it in assignments like projects, homework, portfolios, evaluations, and newscasts.
•Students can get to connect with others in the classroom and outside of the classroom, such as exchanging Voki recordings with other classmates, and pupils from other classes and other schools through the internet.
•As an enjoyable and unique language experience, students can speak to a specific audience.
•Students can create and maintain a log of Vokis as they monitor their own progress over a specific lesson or unit, or the entire course.
•Teachers can create accounts as desire. They can create one for each class and have pupils create their Vokis, then students can use the code for publishing their own creations as participate in a class discussion task. Here, teachers have the opportunity to control all the Vokis. Although students could have their own accounts, an account for the whole class to share allows teachers to better monitor and control the content and activity. Teachers need to insure content appropriateness and students’ safety in the classroom. Because Voki doesn’t offer content filters and there is always a risk of having some students who are unaware of internet safety easily exposing personal information online, teachers should well monitor the class while using Voki. For supporting information on internet safety in the classroom please click here http://www.teachersfirst.com/spectopics/safety.cfm
•Teachers can assess students using Voki by assigning a specific character based on a certain topic or vocabulary. Students create it and record their speaking on the target language and can either present to the teacher right there in the classroom or publish it to a specific web site or through email. This can actually work for evaluations and homework.
•Teachers can create and share lesson plans with colleagues on the site by visiting the Voki Lesson Plan Database that is located under the LEARN category. To go directly there please click here http://www.voki.com/lesson_plans.php
•Teachers can always find more ideas, answers, tips, or see how others are using Voki in their classroom visiting the Teachers’ Corner that is located under the LEARN category. To go directly there please click here http://forums.voki.com/forums/list.page
Move on to Unit Three: Assessment and Evaluation
Back to Unit One Unit One: What VOKI is
Back to Home page Integrating VOKI in the Foreign Language Classroom