Monday, January 26, 2009

Welcome to the world of blog!

Good morning Higher Intermediate students and
welcome to my blog, the Unity of Opposites!

This morning, I'd like you to start your own blog. If you've done this before, it will be pretty easy. If you haven't done it before, it shouldn't be too hard to learn. I've written a blog before but I've never asked students to start in class, so this might be a bit of an experiment for all of us! :-)

There are several purposes to this activity:

1. For you to practice reading, listening and writing (well, typing really!) in English.

2. To practice listening to and following instructions in English.

3. To encourage you to communicate regularly in English.

4. For you to interact with classmates in English in a new way.

5. For you to express yourselves in a more 'free' way than might be possible in class.

6. To provide some variety to your English studies.

I hope you enjoy doing it and get something out of it personally. It'd also be great to see you continue your blog after today. If, however, it's not really your cup of tea and you're not very keen on it, that's fine; just focus on purpose #1 above (to practice reading, listening and writing in English).

There's just one simple rule that I'd like you to follow:

Don't include anything that might offend others (e.g., swearing, negative personal comments) - remember that other people in the class will read your blog.

What to do

1. First, have a look at another blog. This is an interesting one:

1. The next thing to do is to start creating your own, so put the headphones on, and have a look at this short instructional video:

2. Then, following the instructions in the video, create your own blog.

3. When you are ready to start writing your blog, open Microsoft Word and begin writing your response to the following tasks in a Word document:

Imagine you had more time each week to do the things you enjoy. Write about how you would spend that time (e.g., If I had more time, first of all I think I would have some piano lessons.)

Think about major decisions you have made in the past. Imagine if you had made a different choice. Explain to another student what you think you might have done. (e.g., If I hadn't come to Australia, I would have stayed in my country and I'd probably be still working.)

4. Use Word to improve your grammar, punctuation and spelling (if something is underlined in red, the spelling is wrong; if something is underlined in green, the grammar or punctuation is wrong). Ask me for help if necessary.

5. Copy your text from Word into the 'Edit post' area of Blogger and when you're happy with it, click the 'Publish Post' button.

6. When you've finished your blog, it's time to share it with me and your classmates. Come back to my blog and click on the 'Follow this blog' link in the top right hand corner, under the 'Unity of Opposites' title. Choose to 'Follow publicly' and click 'Follow'.

7. Click on the other people who are 'following' my blog so you can read their blogs. Comment on the blogs you read.

And that's it! I hope you've had fun

and I look forward to reading your blogs :-)

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