Tuesday, July 12, 2011

WEEK 10- Virtual Worlds

According to the Wikipedia; a virtual world is a genre of online community that often takes the form of a computer-based simulated environment, through which users can interact with one another and use and create objects. Virtual worlds are intended for its users to inhabit and interact, and the term today has become largely synonymous with interactive 3D virtual environments, where the users take the form of avatars visible to others graphically.[2] These avatars are usually two-dimensional, or three-dimensional graphical representations.
Communication between users has ranged from text, graphical icons, visual gesture, sound, and rarely, forms using touch, voice command, and balance senses.

Among the many virtual worlds used for EFL purposes are:

WWW.WOOGIWORLD.COM - This is another tween social network based out of a 2D platform, and it is free. The good thing about Woogi is that you can play instantly.  Similarly to the reviewed sites, you can learn dialogue, invite friends, and practice basic vocabulary in English.

Possible lessons: Commands, parts of the house, greetings and salutations, descriptions of self, computer basic terminology, colors, shapes, sizes, and names of odd objects not taught in textbooks, basic dialogue, “what do you like?”, sports, hobbies, and urban terms.

WWW.LOLASLAND.COM Girls (8-12) will enjoy Lola guiding them through her world, and help you build your!

Possible lessons: Apply descriptions, steps to the process, colors, shapes, parts of the house, parts of the body, greetings, introductions.

WWW.HANDIPOINTS.COM- and personal management. Task and chores lists to be followed and completed online.

Possible lessons: Verbs, counting, commands, feedback, management, and lessons on the timeWWW.WHIRLED.COM- Pronounced “world” for “whirled” it is an avatar-based RPG where you “start off as a piece of tofu” and then move on to make a world of your own.

Possible lessons: Commands, parts of the house, greetings and salutations, descriptions of self, computer basic terminology, colors, shapes, sizes, and names of odd objects not taught in textbooks
www.whyville.com-  Whyville is directed towards the 8-12 (Middle school, Upper Elem) population. It is a game which, like Second Life, has received reviews and research-based reasons why it is educational.

Possible lessons: Application of LingTECHlingo, parts of the body,  greetings and salutations, descriptions of self, computer basic terminology,  basic dialogue, sports, hobbies, and common expressions.



My Second Life Experience:
This picture here is of my Avatar in Second Life, a virtual world I have recently become part of, thanks to the guidance of my ICT teacher, who has lead me to visit and learn this new adventure called Second Life. 
I firt visited this site with a group of classmates from the EFL Masters program at UPEL Caracas, last Monday 23-06-2011.
I have to say that the tour our teacher gave us was wonderful, but the experience I had with my fellow coursemates was even better. We really had a good time. 
The first thing we had to do apart from creating our Avatars, was to make them do what we wanted, such as walk. What a challenge!Our Avatars wouldn't do as we wanted, they would go backwars instead of forwards, they would sit on the top of a tree instead of on a log etc. At first it was quite difficult to find out how to work with the computer keyboard to make them move. We were following our teacher, but even that was just a challenge. Edgard's avatar went for a swim because he missed the path and didn´t know how to get out of the water and that was really funny, M.Aurora's avatar couldn't sit on the log but in it and you could only see her head poking out of the log! ja ja. But what made me laugh like crazy was Albis's avatar who was extremly funny for she was totally bald, didn't have shoes, her skirt looked as helicopter helixes, and additionally she would be circling around herself like a crazy out of control android. ja ja.  It was hilarous!
Then we met another teacher from the UPEL and we took some snapshops of ourselves.After that the teacher took us to a place where we learned how to dance. Finally she taught us how to fly.
It was a very interesting experience and I will definitely visit this place and explore all the different options it has to offer, specially in terms of a learning space, in order to be able to use it in a nearby future to teach and learn. I believe the possibilities of such a virtual world as Second Life for EFL are endless.

In this picture we are all together enjoying the view.
Albis,Teacher Eve,Edgar,Maite,Mau,and M.Aurora.

Maite's Avatar in Second Life

1 comment:

  1. What a great post, Maite! Congratulations! I learned from you and also enjoyed the reading. Our Second Life tour was a fabulous experience, indeed. I hope you explore more and discover the huge potential it has in the TEFL field.