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Friday, 1 April 2011

Voki-Create Your Own Avatar

Today's Website~

Voki-Create Your Own Avatar

Voki for Education

What is it about?

●  Voki is a free tool that you can use it to create your own speaking avatar.

●  It is easy to customize your avatar, add voice, and publish it.

●  You can post your personalized avatars in your blog or your website.  You can

    also use it as your profile.

●  Voki provides lesson plans (different subjects, different grades) for teachers to use

    in the classroom.  The "Teacher's Corner" provides teachers with a community to

    share their ideas and teaching plans. 

Why is the content good for language teaching?

●  Voki can be used in education to practice speaking and communicating in target

    language.

●  Voki encourages learners to participate in language learning.

●  Voki engages learners in creative expression in target language.

●  Every student (especially shy students) has a chance to speak and

    communicate in target language.

●  It is interesting and motivating.

●  The personalized feature empowers learners and provides learners with choices. 

How might you use it in a language teaching context?

●  I would have students make a story related to the topic, grammar, vocabulary,

    or sentence patterns we learned in class.

●  For example, if the grammatical focus is on comparative adjectives, we can have

    students make a story or according to the adjectives we learned in class.  They

    can use more adjectives if needed.  The teacher should be around for help.

●  Some resources should be provided for students to consult. e.g. online dictionary,

    the websites related to the topic, the grammar rules.

●  If students are beginners of Voki, teachers should offer specific criteria for students

    to follow.  For instance, students can use the 15 comparative adjectives taught to

    create a 2-minute story or introduction related to the topic. 

●  For individual learner, the teacher can have each student to talk about their hobby,

    introduce their pet, family or themselves.  But sufficient computers and headphones

    are needed.

●  There are many other activities, such as tongue twisters, sing English songs,

    practice their pronunciation and intonation by playing different roles.  Check out

    Teacher's corner in Voki for more ideas. 

●  See a lesson plan using Voki in  TEFL Teacher.

Limitations

  Need computers and headphones (microphones) for students to create their avatars

    and add voice.

  It is not easy for collaborative learning because one can only create one character.

●  Also need more time to teach students how to publish their avatars in the blog or

    website.

●  It might be very noisy when everyone records their voice at the same time.

●  The teachers need to organize the questions or content they would like their students

    to answer in case it looks messy on the screen.

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Example~ Start to use Voki

●  Log in and click on "Create your own Voki" or "Create".

Log in and Create
 ●  Customized  your Voki.  Choose the character you like, dress it and add accessories.


Choose, Dress and Add bling
Select the character

 ●  Add a voice to your character.  You can record your voice via phone or microphone,

     text to speech, or upload an audio file from your computer.  Here, we use "text to

    speech" function.  We type the text, choose the language, the voice and accent

    you like.

Text to Speech

●  Select the background  you like.  Publish your Voki now.

Select Backgrounds and Publish

●  You can embed your Voki in your website or blog, or send a link to your friends.

     You can click on "My Voki" to edit your characters.
Send a Link to Your Friend or Embed Your Voki

●  An example of my Voki character.



●  You can watch  Voki Tutorial in Russell Stannard's Teacher Training Video for more 

    instructions.

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