As a child, I was fascinated by languages. I always dreamed of mastering several foreign languages and being able to understand and communicate with people from different cultural background. The image of a juggler being able to throw and catch the colorful balls – which represented languages for me – was vivid in my mind.
I am still entertaining the hope that one day, somehow, I’ll be able to fulfill my dream. Today, however, if I am to teach digital natives effectively, I must add a new and special ball and learn to use adequately all these new computer technologies mentioned in CALL J
No problem, as a life-long learner, I would like nothing but that. The challenge is mostly about time limits, though. Technology is advancing and changing the learning/teaching world too fast for me. I visualize it as a bullet train that won’t allow me the chance of admiring the scenery we zoom by. I already see my digital native students busy texting and checking their emails on their smart phones … very comfortable with the train’s dizzying speed. Unlike me, none of them seems to care about the scenery. They probably watch it on their ipads.
I guess, in my mind, I am still transitioning between two very different worlds of learning/instructing. As I look back at my own French learning experience, in my childhood’s French school, I clearly see how language, culture, and content were incorporated. They probably did not have the standards defined then as they are now, but I assure you, the 5C’s were in every lesson and every learning activity. I remember that very well and can prove it. The only thing missing was technology, except for a small, loud, heavy, manual, black typewriter and telephone that only the principal’s secretary had access to, under the watchful eye of the principal.
Oh well, time to move on and catch the train … J