Today I stumbled on something marvelous. After updating Instagram on my phone, I discovered that you can now make and share short videos.
One of the first videos I watched was a girl reading a list of words.
Well, sure, you’d be forgiven if you just went huh?!
However, the key to my interest is the hashtag: #dawnsaccentcollection
If you have instagram I highly recommend you search for the tag. There are several videos made by people all over the UK and some in the States, all reading the same list of words. It’s a great study in accents for anyone with a general interest, but we’re language teachers.
I’m excited! Are you?
Off the top of my head classroom applications:
- Students choose two and compare the accents of one or two words of their choice. Use phonetic chart to analyse what’s going on.
- Teacher chooses a word that includes a troublesome phoneme (specific to the class in question). Student’s watch 3 or 4 videos with varying accents and try and find a version that they are comfortable with pronouncing.
- Kick off a discussion on varieties of English
- Students record their own lists and share them using the hashtag
- Oh! Doing an activity using this material on an interactive whiteboard. Swoon!
What are you going to do? Please leave your ideas in the comments box.
I can’t wait to see how this progresses in the next days/weeks. And yes, I’m now going to figure out how to record a list myself!
PS: If you are having trouble let me know. Although you should note I’m not the right person to give you technical instructions! I can point out that video doesn’t work on Androids operating older versions of Jellybean. However, Instagram can be accessed on a normal computer at http://www.instagram.com You will need an account to log in and access content (maybe one of your students already has one and can help out).
PPS: Did you know I just started a company in the Randstad area of the Netherlands? I’m now taking on students here. Do me a favour, like me on facebook!