OTAN Digest #16
May 4, 2009



Uses of Technology in the Instruction of Adult English Language Learners
Education providers in California serving ESL learners have long focused on integrating technology into the curriculum.  In this brief from the Center for Adult English Language Acquisition (CAELA) network, the author provides a comprehensive and succinct overview of the research related to how technology can be used in the instruction of adult English language learners to facilitate their acquisition of English proficiency.  According to the research cited in the brief, using technology with ESL learners provides an array of benefits, including: Read more....

Green Jobs and Adult Education: What’s the Connection?
It’s hard to pick up a newspaper or listen to the news without hearing about the "green economy" and new "green jobs."  The federal government is proposing a $787 billion stimulus package to provide funding and support for creation of new green jobs, and this is generating a lot of excitement among educators, politicians and other stakeholders.   But what exactly is a "green job," and what is the connection between the new "green economy" and Adult Education? Read more...

Adult Learners Take Action
Agenda posted on the whiteboard 03/10/09; teacher leads a choral reading & discussion of the agenda @ the beginning of class. On March 10 2009, Milpitas Adult Education learners in Citizenship, Senior ESL, ESL 4, and ESL 5 attended the Milpitas Unified School District Board Meeting and presented letters about Read more..

Adult Learners Succeed – Tell a Story of Your Program’s Good Work by Oct 2
You may remember OTAN’s big campaign in 2005 to collect and publicize 150 success stories about adult learners. The number of 150 was to honor the Sesquicentennial anniversary of adult education in California. It did not stop there. OTAN is still receiving nominations and publishing stories. There are now around 170 stories and 17 accompanying videos on Adult Education Students Succeed. The next cycle ends October 2, 2009 so nominate your past students now!

Two Web Sites for Job and Career Info
In these challenging economic times, we may already be experiencing an influx of students looking for jobs or career information. The California Department of Education (CDE) has created a new Web site called California Direct Connect – Links to Your Future. The site is designed to help students and workers find jobs, explore careers, investigate opportunities to continue their education, and Read more...

Below are some of the opportunities in May to take an online workshop.

Professional Development:


Upcoming Online Workshops:

Don't delay and be disappointed. Sign-up today before the workshop fills up or is canceled due to lack of enrollment!

These workshops are in danger of being canceled due to lack of enrollment. Please register today!!

Getting Started with Blogs with Barry Bakin
May 8, 2009 -- 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm
Participants will sign up at a free blog provider and create their first blog “post.” Participants will learn very basic editing commands, uploading of an image, and how to post a response to a blog entry. Prerequisites: Basic knowledge of using a computer and a Web browser. Working Internet connection. Access to www.edublogs.org from the computer that the participant will be using on the day of the workshop. (Some schools and/or school districts block all blogging sites.)

An Overview of Google Products with Melinda Holt
May 20, 2009 — 3:30 pm to 5:00 pm
Google is a search engine and so much more. There are a wide variety of services offered by Google that are free and ready to use – all you need to know is where they are and how to use them. This workshop is dynamic and will explore one or two different Google products per session. Workshops include mini-explorations into iGoogle, Picasa, different aspects of Documents, Maps, Earth, and Page Creator and more.
Requirements: A Google account (gmail). If you do not have one, go to www.google.com/accounts and click the "Create an account now" link.

Digital Storytelling
May 22 , 2009 — 1:00 pm to 2:30 pm
Digital stories are multi-media projects that combine images and/or video with audio recordings and/or music and sound effects and can be used across the curriculum. Instructors of any discipline can include digital story assignments for the ultimate in project-based learning.
Prerequisites: Images (.jpeg) participant would like to use in a digital story saved in a project folder on participant’s computer, Windows operating system with Movie Maker installed, high-speed Internet connection, computer microphone and speakers. Ability to navigate Windows. Ability to create and locate folders.

Easy Excel Activities for the Classroom: Create a Personal Budget with Susan Coulter
May 22 , 2009 — 3:00 pm to 4:30 pm
Teachers will receive a budget template, which includes two different interactive pay stubs, and linked budget and pie graph. Learn how to create your own budget and pie graph. Materials are appropriate as classroom presentation or student technology project.
Prerequisites: A basic knowledge of Excel helpful but not necessary.

Face to Face, Hands-On Workshops at your school!

OTAN offers no-cost, hands-on, three-hour workshops. We will come to your school if you have at least 10 interested participants and an approved lab. If you have a smaller school and need more participants, consider coordinating with other small schools in your area to fill your workshop.

Advanced PowerPoint 2003 for Adult Education presented by Linda Swanson
EL Monte-Rosemead Adult School - May 14, 2009 2:45p - 5:45p (This is an inservice and not open to ourtside attendees.)

We offer a variety of technology related topics such as using PowerPoint, building class Web pages, and using Internet resources in your classroom. Visit our Web site to see the complete list including descriptions and prerequisites for each, then call Linda Swanson at 800-894-3113 or email her at lswanson@otan.us to schedule a workshop. Friday afternoons are the most popular time and they fill up fast, but if you can host during the week, there are more possibilities.

Call us to schedule a workshop at your school! 800-894-3113

Resources for Teachers:

Resources for teachers graphic

Here are some great new links recently added to the OTAN site (or a few you may have never discovered) that might be useful to teachers who are trying to integrate the use of the Internet into their classes:

Common Craft Show
Common Craft has taken difficult concepts regarding various technology topics (podcasting, RSS, blogs, wikis, the Internet), finance, electing a President, and photo sharing and has created easy to understand videos explaining these concepts. Very creative and useful for you and your ABE, ASE, Older Adults, and High Intermediate to Advanced ESL students.

Interactive Games from Oswego City School District
These interactive games include the subjects of basic math (addition, subtraction, multiplication, division), telling time, number sense, and sequencing. Good for drill and practice.

PowerPoint Presentations from Jefferson County Schools and others
If you are looking for some pre-built PowerPoint presentations you could use as a class activity or an independent study tool for a student, this Jefferson County Schools site has a wide variety for Language Arts, Math, Science, Social Studies, the Arts, and Health. They are designed for K-12, but many could be used as is or tweaked slightly for use in your class. Or just browse through them to get an idea for creating your own PowerPoint. The quality varies, so you may have to dig.

Classroom Response Systems from the Center for Teaching
This site explains what a student response system (clicker, SRS) is, terminology, teaching with a SRS, including types of questions and activities that work best, and examples of their use. There is also an 84 minute presentation by an instructor, Derek Bruff, on how to use clickers in the classroom environment.

UVic's Language Teaching Clipart Library
At this site from the University of Victoria in Canada, you can find over 3,000 clip art images in categories like animals, body, clothing, emotions, etc. It’s from the Hot Potatoes website. The clip art would be great for creating online activities and it's available free for educational purposes. You may use GIF images from this library on your Website as long as you add an acknowledgement to the UVic Humanities Computing and Media Centre and Half-Baked Software somewhere on your site.

Here is an Online Tool useful for everyone in adult ed...

Free Online Surveys
This is a survey tool you can use to survey your students (or anyone.) They can be done via email or your Web site. The free version allows for up to 20 questions, 50 responses, and the site will allow you to collect data from the survey for 10 days. So if you create a survey, be sure to check back 10 days later to see the results, since you won't be able to see them after that. Also check out Survey Monkey in this list of tools if you are trying to create a student survey.

This month's Web-Based Class Activity introduces you to classroom polling/survey options:

Classroom Polling with Live Results: An Affordable Web Alternative to Clickers
Have you heard of or seen clickers, also known as Audience Response Systems? They are a technology that started in Hollywood as a way to poll audiences on their reactions to TV programs, commercials, and movies. Their popularity has been growing in the business world, for use in conventions, and in recent years in the classroom. Audience response systems are a great, quick way to measure students' attainment of learning outcomes and engage passive learners.