My school is finally 1:1 -ish. Yes, you read that right 1:1ish. Last year we have two school carts with Chromebooks to share between the high school. This year, all of my high school students have Chromebooks, but my poor 8th grade students (who are taking high school Spanish 1 level) do not get them.
My first internal dilemma with the Chromebooks was whether or not I would use English or Spanish computer terminology. I personally believe it is important to teach our students terms like laptop and link in the target language, because I was at such a disadvantage in this area when I studied abroad. At first I thought I would create a technology unit that would teach my students all of the terminology they needed, but I couldn’t think of a great hook that would make it comprehensible nor in a story format. However, I recognize that some of my students are not familiar with some of the terms in English – let alone Spanish! I couldn’t believe it when a student told me they carried a flip phone or that some of my students do not have a computer – laptop or otherwise – in their home.
Nonetheless, I feel (mostly personally imposed) pressure to begin using the Chromebooks. I went with my gut and stuck with the Spanish terms. The two tools that have made this easy are Jing and Screencast, both of TechSmith. I first heard about them last fall in Concordia’s AMLA 610 course. Essentially, Jing helps you record a video of your screen with audio while Screencast hosts the video after it has been created.
The Jing portion is a pretty little bubble that sits in the top right corner for Mac users and the top middle for Windows users. When you want to record, you hover over the yellow bubble, click the plus symbol, focus on where you want the image/video taken (you can do your Internet browser or just a select portion of your screen), and either capture an image or record a video. After the video is complete, the video will upload to Screencast.com. Screencast will host the video for your students to use at a later date. It’s worth noting that both are free, but Screencast will only host so much data for free. You are able to upgrade if you require more space.
While I use this for How-To videos, I think the possibilities are endless for world language educators. Hopefully, you can put Jing and Screencast to work for you!