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  #1 (permalink)  
Unread Dec 31st, 2005, 10:38 pm
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Default Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

Anyone using Skype with their students?

How exactly do you use it? I don't mean how do you use Skype, but do you use it with your students?

Any tips?
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  #2 (permalink)  
Unread Jan 2nd, 2006, 01:34 am
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

No, but i've been thinking about it! i would love to get some ideas about this.
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  #3 (permalink)  
Unread Jan 5th, 2006, 09:36 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

looking at nelliemuller's sites it seems like she might be. maybe she'll reply in this thread or you could PM her. http://www.eslhq.com/forums/private.php?do=newpm&u=1919
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  #4 (permalink)  
Unread Feb 11th, 2006, 11:10 am
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

I'm currently in Canada and I used Skype to keep in contact with many people from Korea. I can't see what you wouldn't be able to use it to teach.

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  #5 (permalink)  
Unread May 6th, 2006, 03:09 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

We could start using Skype here on this forum to exchange ideas and see how it works. I have used Skype once so far when a partner called me from Hong Kong and the sound quality was excellent. Skype is a very convenient tool - stable and easy to handle. All you need is a good moderator and some internet savvy participants who are interested in talking to you. Companies like Englishtown.com are using a similar technology or maybe it's Skype?
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Unread May 6th, 2006, 08:25 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

I think using Skype to teach English will help people with the area that most have a problem with, and that's plain old conversation. In this case, they're not just going to sit on their chair with their mouth shut, they will definately talk to you. You could have a loose conversation about nothing at all, or you could be viewing the same online text and commenting about that. I believe that using VOIP (Skype) will be a great teaching tool of the future.
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  #7 (permalink)  
Unread May 6th, 2006, 10:28 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

Mark and I do the podcast via skype. The quality is excellent. You can even have conference calls of up to 5 people for free. I think you could meet students online, talk for 30 minutes and it would be very beneficial to them.
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  #8 (permalink)  
Unread May 6th, 2006, 11:18 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

Quote:
Quote mrcards
I believe that using VOIP (Skype) will be a great teaching tool of the future.
Andrew, you are right. As a matter of fact VOIP is already being used by a number of companies some of them start-ups such as twinguide.com or Openenglishworld.com. Other more established ones are offering live lessons via VOIP, the largest of them is probably Englishtown.com and Cleverlearn.com is beta testing their live lesson service which they want to launch later this year...
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Unread May 7th, 2006, 08:24 am
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

I've stumbled across a website that might be useful to you all to check out, I've mentioned it in another post, but could easily go overlooked.

This is a website for penpals all around the world who are using Skype. If you wanted your students to make friends and chat with others using English, this may be a good start.

http://www.correspondance-fr.org/en/skype-directory.php

It looks like a wide array of countries with few native English speaking ones. But other than French, I'd say that the most commonly spoken language there will be English.
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  #10 (permalink)  
Unread May 7th, 2006, 08:14 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

I can foresee that Skype will be huge in reaching China students in areas where there are few native speakers
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  #11 (permalink)  
Unread May 8th, 2006, 01:48 am
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

Hi Alex, you are right. China is seeing a fast growth in internet use and Skype might indeed become a huge success. By the way, I remember you telling us about your training course for call center agents (that was last year on eslcafe). Could you please elaborate a bit? How exactly does it work, how did you start, etc. I'm looking for partners to develop an infrastructure that can be used by companies as the English language training programs available at the moment are not effective enough. Maybe we can start some type of think tank or workshop or whatever you want to call it. Professionals like Eric, Mark, you are exchanging experiences and most importantly: goals. Once we know who we are and where we want to go it might make sense to pull together...
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Unread Nov 18th, 2006, 10:55 am
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

I run distance-learning on-line courses, and as part of the package, students have tutorials (about 20 mins per unit) via phone or Skype. Each tutorial is closely based on what they've been studying - there are a set of questions, conversation topics etc for each unit. Written practice is also given via E-mail. They can also contact me anyway they like if they have any problems - if they're not sure how to use the programme, have a grammar query etc.
Obviously, Skype is cuts out the cost of the phone calls and is a better option in particular for anyone a long way away. It also has the advantage that with the webcam added they can see me - a lot of students feel inhibited about talking on the phone without being able to see who they're speaking to. adding the webcam sometimes detracts from the sound, but even if it's only on for the first twenty seconds, it helps.
I wrote a couple of articles about these courses - you can find the first one here. Or if you want to see the courses themselves go here.
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Unread Nov 19th, 2006, 07:12 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

I can see the potential of Skype with language acquisition for language learners. But the drawback is you learn the art of speaking and listening but you would not learn the art of detecting body language via communication, especially for language learners. It is, I believe, for language learners important to learn the communication via body language as well as more conventional areas of communication. Image a situation where a language learner has learnt via Skype from a high-context culture and visiting a low-context culture. There will be the immediate shock of the amount of language conveyed through the body. Furthermore, the language acquirer will have difficulty conveying emotion from a non-communicative body. Thus, I believe that human interaction is important for developing language, as well as cultural, understanding.

Nonetheless, I have started looking at the opportunity of iPod within the classroom. There are some podcasts that provide conversational English and this is just another area to improve language acquisition for students. What do you think about the possibility of iPod within the classroom? There is a lot of potential.
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Unread Nov 21st, 2006, 02:44 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

Good subject.

I'm using it on a much smaller scale ie I've installed it on the computer in my office and on those in the students' resource room here at the school. I often use it to practice conference calls or simple one to one dialogues.

It's been quite a success. The students feel they're getting something out of it as they're practising what is probably one of the hardest things to do.

I like the distance learning ideas you've been discussing. While I agree with whistleblower about the amount we communicate through our bodies, any skype lessons would be in addition to lessons in the presence of a 'real' teacher, no? Or at least you'd hook up a webcam to let the student see how we gesticulate and our facial expressions.
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  #15 (permalink)  
Unread Dec 14th, 2006, 03:49 pm
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

My children use Skype to get in touch with their penpals in Poland and England. Just some sentences, but a great experience for them.
francesca
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  #16 (permalink)  
Unread Dec 15th, 2006, 03:56 am
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

This thread has prompted me to use skype, just to keep in voice contact with friends from overseas.
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  #17 (permalink)  
Unread Dec 15th, 2006, 09:54 am
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Default Re: Anyone using Skype as a learning tool?

I think using Skype as a learning tool would be a wonderful idea but I have to admit I don't use it. I'm considering it though.
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