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Issue 07 | Volume 03

January 3, 2012

In this issue: iPads in the Classroom 

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INTO OSU’s pilot iPad program


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What’s new?

Farewell Bake-off 

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Saying goodbye to Randy

Tech with Katie! 

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Blackboard tips & tricks

Bring Your Kids to Work Day!  Page 3 Blackboard tips & tricks Rayan Aldaffaa, Essa Al Madan, Yasir Alsallum and Basher Almadan, from Saudi Arabia, stand on the rodeo arena.

Welcome to 2012! Well, winter break is behind us and a flood of new students surrounds us! We had several trips to occupy students over the break. Check out photos from those trips on the INTO OSU Flickr feed by clicking here! Fourth Annual INTO staff conference The deadline for proposals for the 2012 INTO staff conference has been extended to January 16th, 2012. Applications are available by clicking here. This is a great opportunity to contribute to professional development and to show off something you feel strongly about. INTO wants to hear your voice! Twitter We’ve revamped our Twitter page! Click here to visit it!

Info Depot



Staff Library 

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Professional Development Library

Upcoming events: Orientation begins PW/GE: Tues., Jan. 3rd • AE: Mon., Jan. 9th

Classes begin GE: Wednesday, January 4th PW/OSU: Monday, January 9th AE: Thursday, January 12th

Blackboard Brown Bag Lunch! Friday, January 6th • 1pm • ILLC 250

CAMPUS CLOSED - MLK, Jr. Day Monday, January 16th

MLK, Jr. Mandala event Monday, January 16th - see page 2 for info



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iPads in the Classroom Remember Guns, Germs and Steel by Jared Diamond? In his chapter on the evolution of technology he discusses how amongst other things, Thomas Edison’s phonograph had no specific uses in mind other than maybe “preserving the last words of dying people, recording books for blind people to hear, announcing clock time and teaching spelling.” The idea of recording and playing music did not feature. Diamond suggests that with many new technologies, the invention comes before the perceived need. I think that today’s technology is no different and hence, the iPad committee. I was initially inspired by watching a group of Elementary school students in Escondido, California who have used iPod touch devices to exceeded typical learning goals by six times the normal rate. The devices were used to increase vocabulary acquisition, reading fluency and comprehension in addition to boosting students’ motivation. Check out video of the class.

Story by INTO OSU Instructor Michelle Scholz

The goals of the iPad committee have been to seek out ways to use the iPads to meet learning objectives of existing classes in novel ways. The choice of learning applications can be somewhat overwhelming and sifting through these with discernment is an on-going task. Additionally, we have a great tendency to fall back upon what we know and are familiar with, which can be distracting in finding unique and creative ways to use the tools. It is easy to use the iPad as a laptop in class, but the opportunity for innovation comes in finding features that go beyond this type of learning experience. Some obvious uses have included eBooks with dictionary look-up options and annotation features. Book creation apps abound and the advantage of these is that they often allow students to augment their writing with embedded images and videos for a more media-rich experience.

Reminders and Announcements Classes begin •

GE/FE: January 3 • PW: January 9 • AE: January 12

Blackboard Brown Bag Lunch •

A time to learn tips and tricks and show off your Blackboard skills! January 6th • 1:00pm • ILLC 250

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day •

In honor of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, campus will be closed on Monday, January, 16th.

In celebration of peace and friendship, students from many countries and cultures are invited to paint a mandala (a circular artwork)! Please mention this to your students, and feel free to drop by and check it out yourself! More details coming soon. g


Voice memos and downloadable MP3s or podcasts allow students to work at their own pace and they are able to check their pronunciation with phonemic audio charts. INTO OSU Instructor Katie Mitchell has had a great deal of success with using Quizlet to create flashcards and there are a large number of apps available with “multi-sided” cards that allow students to include additional sentences, pictures, sounds and record their own voice. Instructors Kahramon Gafurov and Muhammed Othman have had some success with using iPads for reading and paraphrasing in class. He used the Blackboard to do this, having students read and submit in small groups. One advantage of Blackboard is that individual student’s work can be assessed and contributions tracked and students are already familiar with the layout. The obvious drawback is that the full capabilities of the device are not necessarily employed in the lesson and similar results can be achieved in the computer labs. Apps such as Preposition Builder that use a drag and drop feature may take these great ideas to the next level. Our committee seeks to find relevant ways of using the iPads that fit into curriculum goals while being cognitive of the learning curve for students and teachers.


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Farewell Bake-off

INTO OSU instructor Randy Garver has been accepted into a PhD program at Texas A & M University. We’re happy for him but he’ll be missed! To say goodbye, everyone was welcome to enter their best baked goods into a baking contest! Many faculty and staff members came, tasted, and voted for their favorite! The contest winner was INTO OSU staff member Nikki Hinshaw, with her soft, fluffy pumpkin cookies! Second place went to Kahramon Gafurov, with his rogalikis, a traditional Russian cookie. Congratulations to the Turnout was good for the bake-off and there were plenty of baked goods to go around! winners, and good luck to Randy!

Saying goodbye to Randy!

Randy Garver receives a handshake and card from Bob Gilmour, INTO OSU Director of Academic Programs.


TIE! 10 blackboard WIth KA tips & tricks

1. Use the Blackboard training materials from OSU. Materials available here. 2. Email your students using blackboard. Click here for instructions.

talk about things they find interesting or complicated in authentic materials. The assignment is described here. Information about how to set it up is here. 8. Stay up-to-date on student performance through the Early Warning System. It can notify you if a student has not logged in in a while, he/she has a low grade, or has not submitted their homework before the due date. The how-to information is here.

9. Prevent cheating on Blackboard tests using the 3. Weight grades using categories. So, homework is worth timer setting and randomized questions. The how-to 10% of the grade, but you don’t know how to calculate it. information is here. Let Blackboard do the work. More info here & a video here. 10. Organize your materials into learning modules. These 4. Create a class-wide collaborative dictionary or can be used for class units; it can also be used to create annotated bibliography using the new wiki feature. The a selection of materials for extra practice. Information how to information is here. about how to set it up is here. 5. Embed your PowerPoint presentations using the new Written by Katie Mitchell, INTO OSU Instructor & slideshare Mash-up feature. Click here for instructions. Technology Advisor. 6. Enforce the language, so students only use the site in To learn more about these tips and tricks, come to the English (via Byrne Brewerton). Here’s a video describing it. Blackboard Brown Bag Lunch on Friday, January 6th at 7. Create a grammar blog with students where students 1:00pm in the ILLC, room 250! g



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Bring THE kids to work day!

This fun event brought some excitement to the Center! Staff and faculty were invited to bring their kids to work, show them around the Center, have snacks a hot cocoa, and meet their coworkers. It was a refreshing break!

Erin Creager & her kids watch a movie.

Amy McGowan’s daughter Zoey’s victory dance!

Amy McGowan’s son Keagan relishes his smooth move!

Top: Jason Hall & Julianna Betjemann, plus family! Bottom: Bob Gilmous and his son.

Story by Laura Storz The INTO OSU Professional Development Library is up and running! Located in the Learning Center and designed for use by INTO OSU faculty, the library serves as a resource for deepening our growth as ESOL professionals. Faculty may check out up to two books at a time for a three week period. The goal is to add one to two books each month to the library. To curate a hand-crafted library of the highest quality, new books must be recommended personally by faculty to Laura Storz. INTO Oregon State University Oregon State University, 1701 SW Western Blvd, Corvallis, OR 97333 USA T: +1-541-737-2464



Nathan Warren’s daughter, climbing high.

Connection 307  

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