"If we teach today's students as we taught yesterday's, we rob them of tomorrow." --John Dewey

Sunday, February 12, 2012

A Voki for Your Valentine … or Your Vocabulary Lesson

If you've been paying attention to the news in the U.S. lately, you know that President Obama made quite a splash recently for singing just a few measures of an Al Green song during a fundraiser at the Apollo Theater.  Those few seconds of song garnered the attention of news stations around the country, not just because it was good, but because it was unexpected.  Thanks, Mr. President, for reminding us that a little novelty can go a long way towards getting the attention of your audience.

Short of breaking into song in your classroom, you can add a little novelty by using a fun site like Voki.com.  An individual account at Voki.com is free, and easy to use.  Choose a character from the variety available at the site and make adjustments to hair color, eye color, etc.  Select a background or upload your own, and you're ready to give your Voki a voice.  You can upload saved audio, or record your own message using your computer's microphone or your telephone.  You can even make use of the text to speech feature and have your character speak what you type.  No matter how you add audio, your character will not only move its mouth as it speaks the words, its eyes will follow the movement of the mouse on your page.  Once complete, you can share your message by email, or embedding in a blog or wiki.  Whether you make one to send to your Valentine or for your vocabulary lesson, your Voki is sure to get your message to its intended audience.  Be sure to visit Voki.com to view the collection of lesson plans and see all the ways a voki can get the attention of your students … without singing a single note.

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