February 24, 2009


It's easier to give training sessions to people already involved with Educational Technology because you can start your presentation showing the tools and making people enthusiastic by being an enthusiast.

However, whenever I am going to deliver some session to the general ELT public, I try to begin showing them that there is no need to be afraid of technology. There are always those reluctant teachers who think those tools work only with you because you are young, you know the technolgy, etc...

To help these teachers feel a bit more confident, I try to show them that there has always been and there will always be "technology". The thing is that we don't see the technological appliances we use in our daily lives as technological anymore, we simply "use" them, and the same can happen with webtools, as long as we are not afraid and reluctant about trying them.

Here is a video I usually show in the beginning of my training sessions because it
humorously expresses this very idea:


My colleague Karenne Joy Sylvester has written a very insightful post about this topic too, illustrating these ideas with a personal story of her childhood.

February 13, 2009

Getting serious on Twitter

I created my twitter account last year, but didn't really pay much attention to it. One of my new year's resolution, though, was to begin twittering more seriously, so here is a little report on my first month tweetering more seriously.

Getting (seriously) started:

What helped getting serious about twittering was downloading a desktop application. It is definitely not convinient to keep updated with your twitter by trying to be connected to the website all the time. Also, the desktop applications have more feaetures and with easier and faster navigation. 

Ironically, I got application suggestions using twitter. @carlaarena suggested twihrl, and @dudeneyge recommended tweetdeck. I tried both, liked both, but ended up choosing the latter, which made my following life much easier and more active.

An important detail: before downloading any of these applications, you have to download and install Adobe Air.

Extra connection:

Something that can also add extra connection is syncronizing your tweets with your facebook status. On facebook, search for the twitter application and allow it, then every update you post on twitter is automatically sent to your status on facebook. 

This way, I could get two partners for an online project who read my tweet on facebook and commented on my status asking how to get involved.

Twitter in education:

In this one month twittering more seriously, I could learn about many tools, watched many interesting (and amny funny!) videos, got some ideas and could share and help a little too. 

There were two tweets so far that particularly called my attention: one from @sethdickens, sharing this 50 ideas on using twitter for education blog post; and another retweeted by @tweet4education, sharing this Nineteen interesting ways to use twitter in the classroom presentation.

You're no one if you're not on Twitter:

Finally, what inspired my to write this blog post was a link to a youtube video sent via twitter by @jamesclay, from which I listened for the first time to the song "You're no one if you're not on Twitter", by Ben Walker, which is very funny and so true.

So listen to the song, read the lyrics and, if you're still not on twitter, I suggest you begin seriously thinking about becoming someone...

I you would like to join my Twitter network, I'm ronaldojunior there.

February 6, 2009

Hornby Summmer School - Sán Nicolás Argentina

The British Council, through the Hornby Educational Trust, funded one more Latin America Regional School, held in Sán Nicolás, Argentina, between Jan 21 and Jan 30, and whose topic was Mind the gap: new technologies and teacher training.There were almost 30 participants from 7 different countries in Latin America, all enthusiastic about learning more web tools for language learning/teaching.

The 10 days of hard work were wisely led by Gavin Dudeney and Nik Peachey and I was glad to be a participant and presenter, which was a great role: learning a lot and also sharing.

I delivered a session about blogs, wikis and google docs and was happy to see many participants creating their blogs and wikis and sometimes including them in their final Action Plan. Here are some of the blogs and wikis created by Hornby 2009 participants:

Besides exploring web tools that can be used to enhance language learning/teaching, the participants were able to build/expand their networks. I am hopeful that many projects will be developed due to these 10 days spent together in Argentina.

I would like to thank the British Council for this opportunity and complimment the BC office in Buenos Aires for the impeccable job organizing this Hornby School.

Read more about Hornby Regional School 2009 in Argentina.