A week and a half ago at the National Chinese Language Conference, I had the pleasure of attending Mr. Bobby Hobgood's (Director of Research and Development at UNC) session on Language Learning Through Technology: Tools for Chinese Language Learning. Click Here to view his powerpoint presentation.
It was reassuring to know that what Better Chinese already offers in its K-12 Chinese online curriculum matches with what universities around the nation are doing at the college level. Read online reviews here. Mr. Hobgood talked about his students' access to online voice recording functions, podcast downloads, and dialogue-based, communication-driven Chinese learning - all aspects of the Better Chinese online curriculum. He empasized the importance of archiving students' learning history, and that is exactly what I think is the most useful about Better Chinese's online curriculum. To be able to archive a student's learning progress, in the forms of reports and audio recordings, not only allows the teacher to manage his/her classroom, but also reinforces the student's confidence and boosts a love for foreign language learning.
21st century tools are absolutely necessary in foreign language learning today, especially in Chinese learning since home access to the Chinese language may be limited for non-heritage learners. What kinds of online technology do you use in your classrooms?