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Archive for the ‘Extensive Writing’ Category

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I recently learned about Voicethread from Steven Ahola who uses it for the extensive writing portion of his writing course. He said that he used to carry around piles of paper journals and finds his new way of doing “journal writing” to be more efficient. It also sounds like the addition of visual prompts in Voicethread is very motivating. The basic level of Voicethread (three threads a month) is free.  Here is Steven to explain how he uses Voicethread:

Greetings from Minnesota! I have been using VoiceThread since August. Voicethread describes itself as a “powerful new way to talk about and share your images, documents, and videos.”

In my advanced ESL writing classes, students respond to my “threads” (or writing prompts) each week. I usually write 3-4 prompts a week. The topics usually connect to their own writing, popular culture, or current events.

In order to make a thread, there are a few steps:

1. Click on “Create” at the top left of your page.
2. Click on “Upload.” You may upload images from your computer, your previous voicethreads, and URLS.
3. Click on “Comments.” There are numerous ways to comment: telephone, microphone, webcam, and typing a comment in the “comment bubble.”
4. After you make a comment, make sure you hit “Save.”
5. After saving, you hit “Share.” Click on “Invite your friends.”
6. Click on the friends from your list. Each window will be outlined in yellow. There are four icons in each of the windows (Don’t Allow, View, Comment, and Edit) your friends. Click on “View” and “Comment” and then hit “Send Invite.”

Once you invite your students, they will receive an email which will direct them to the website. Students can make their comments in various ways — telephone, microphone, webcam, or by typing a comment. Since my class focuses on writing, my students must type their comments.

On the main page of VoiceThread, there is a lot of technical support through its tutorials and FAQ section. I have found these to be invaluable.

I hope this information is helpful to anyone who might be considering VoiceThread.

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