On Friday, (24/05/2013) in my ESL Stage 2 class, while students were drafting their investigation report, I was giving individual guidance and a student gave me an insight into how she is using my instructional functional English videos..
Previously that week Monday I had been reading through Sabrina’s writing and had discussed how she was listing facts, repeating words and not organising the flow of information in her paragraphs. So I reminded her of the video on ‘Connectives” and suggested that she watch this video again to combine her ideas more concisely. We also discussed that she needed to increase density by using the passive voice and nominalisation and how she should watch the relevant videos again.
At this point I was feeling that flipping the videos was not working. By being homework (Flipped) even with a follow up discussion on Canvas I wondered if students were using this learning content to achieve literacy outcomes? Or was it unrelated homework?
In between Monday and Friday Sabrina worked independently listening to my videos and drafting her writing. This enabled me to work with other students while knowing Sabrina was still getting learning content from me through the videos.
So on Friday she showed me her draft and it was very surprising. She had rewritten her draft and took great pride in pointing out how she had used connectives, and increased density. One paragraph she had reduced from 150 word to 75. I asked how she did this and she said “I watched the videos’. I asked her how she had watched them and she said that she pauses the video and takes notes.
In working with Sabrina I have found that,
- Students can effectively use the videos to improve literacy.
- That the videos, by using functional grammar terms, have given us a metalanguage to discuss and edit work rather than me just ‘correcting errors’.
- The videos are on Canvas for students to use as often as they like.
- Videos are supported by posters on the classroom walls. Sabrina used these frequently.
Now to get more student feedback.