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Languagelab.com and request for volunteer teachers

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  • pauldotsweeney
    Dear all, (sorry for cross posting) This message is about seeking volunteer teachers and facilitators for languagelab.com. Read on if interested. Some of you
    Message 1 of 1 , Jul 11, 2007
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      Dear all,

      (sorry for cross posting)

      This message is about seeking volunteer teachers and facilitators for
      languagelab.com. Read on if interested.

      Some of you may be aware of Languagelab.com (www.languagelab.com) as a
      nascent language learning company in Second Life.

      Some of you may have registered on the site already - apologies for
      the delay in getting back to you.

      My name is Paul Sweeney and I have worked in English Language Teaching
      (ELT) for 20 years, the last 10 of which in the area of learning
      technologies. A large part of my career was spent with British Council
      and I was fortunate enough to be able to work on a variety of Learning
      technology related projects: teacher training; setting up blended
      courses; designing and delivering virtual English courses; designing
      and supporting communities for teachers and
      learners; designing and implementing projects around what
      supplementary services learners want *around* rather than *instead of*
      classroom learning; devising on where technology is really going to
      solve an educational problem as opposed to being a nice potential
      solution if only it
      could find a problem to justify its existance ;-)

      Another way of saying the above is I have had the opportunity to make
      more mistakes than most but have hopefully learnt not to
      (knowingly) repeat them.

      Last month I started working for Languagelab as Director Education.

      A teaching / learning philosophy of Languagelab.com might run
      something like this:

      We think that language learning and teaching in SL is perfectly
      possible (of course). Where we aim to formally teach, our initial
      approach involves identifying elements of good communicative practice
      in the ELT / ESOL classroom and transferring them into voice enabled
      SL. This probably won't happen in recreated virtual classrooms though
      - good as some of the experiences can be in classrooms, most ELT /ESOL
      teachers spend a fair amount of time trying to transcend the walls and
      relate to real life so we don't see much point recreating them.
      Learning languages in SL should revolve around the principle that SL
      is a social space and Languagelab will facilitate that through helping
      people relate to one another in their target language, informally,
      through structured events as well as in 'classes'.

      In the medium term we would like to work with people to build
      educational SL tools and resources which support the learning of a
      variety of languages. We will also be putting out a call for people
      with an aptitude for developing course materials.

      In the short term (over the next 3 months) we are interested in
      working with people to

      - trial courses we have written
      - host events (speed greeting, karaoke, quiz shows, the 'Desperate
      Housewives hour', the Murder Mystery)
      - facilite communication in the restaurants, bars and leisure areas of

      Until September Languagelab will be free to learners as we try out our
      courses and social events with them.

      We are looking for a core number of teachers- I assume most on this
      list share a communicative language teaching background - who would
      like to collaborate for a few hours per week. We won't be making any
      money of this but will be putting other resources at your disposal and
      think will be a serious learning experience for all involved.

      If you wish to bring your own students then all the better - you can
      explore the facilities with them and we will boost the numbers of
      student community.

      Please get back to me personally if you would like further information.



      Paul Sweeney
      Director Education,
      46 Manchester Street
      London W1U 7LS

      sl: Head Teacher
      e : paul@...
      t : +44 (0)2074875831 (DL)
      +44 (0)2074875801 ext. 20
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