A few weeks ago I got very annoyed at having a great selection of bookmarks in my favourites list on my home computer, and then another wonderful favourites list on my school computer, so I sat down and compiled a list of all the websites that I find useful using Del.ic.ious (www.delicious.com/spanishsam) . I have really found it useful to have all of my most useful sites in one place, and it has also allowed me to share lesser known resources with my department. Most of us do let the others know when we come across something useful, but it can often be hard to always remember to pass the information on, especially when we are all so busy. Well, now I don’t have to. With this page I can update it regularly with anything that I come across, and I can tag it with key words such as grammar, ICT, blog, Spanish etc which allows me to narrow the focus of a search when scrolling through them all. Hopefully this will also make it useful for any colleagues that wish to use it. Delicious also has another good feature which allows me to network with other people, which means that I can easily access other like-minded people and their bookmarks with just one click.
I was talking to my former Head of Department, and current Director of Studies about this page that I had set up when the idea came to me to create a version for the pupils. I didn’t want to give them my list as it is more teacher focused, so I duplicated most of the links and tagged them slightly differently and came up with this . Any pupil (and not just those at our school I suppose) can access this list, and redefine what they wish to revise/study/practise/consolidate by using the tags. I have included tags such as GCSE and A Level, as well as ‘lower school’ (years 7-9) and ‘middle school’ (years 10-11) so that pupils can find what suits their needs more quickly. As the exam season approaches I hope that they will make use of this page, and I hope that it will give them something concrete to do online. We have internal exams at the end of the school year too, so instead of giving every class a list of useful revision sites we can now just give them this link (or they can access it via the school website) and…Bob’s your uncle!
You never know….if they get bored one day, they might just start to click through to something that takes their fancy and end up learning something to do with languages without even realising. I think there could be something further in this for developing ideas for G&T in MFL and for enabling the other teachers in my department to become more interested in looking to see what is out there.