As a language instructor, one of the projects that students often loves to do is to create some form of demonstrative project that can showcase their language use in an authentic situation. When I assign a project such as making a movie, students have to create a story plot where the characters are defined and named, and the movie, while short, needs to have a solid story line where the story should be complete. This type of project is often a collaborative one so students can work in a small group to share the responsibility and build their collaborative skills, and they are assessed with rubrics that focus on both their product and how well they work with each other. Also, a movie project will cover a wide variety of levels on Bloom’s Taxonomy, such as “creating” an original movie production using the language they’ve learned, “remembering” as they will need to memorize their scripts when making the movie, and “applying” the language in an authentic situation that they created.
Depending on the resources available, I would generally ask students to use the following tools:
- GoogleDoc – Students will need to write a draft of the script as a group in the target language, and they are required to use different colors for each person to track their contribution. The document will be shared with me so I can make edits for the students (using the comment function).
- FlipCam and iMovie/Window Movie Maker OR GoAnimate/Xtranormal – Depend on the resources, students will be able to put their script to production. The tool must allow students to record their own voice, so I can assess their speaking and pronunciation.
In order to make the project successful while giving students enough room to stretch their creative muscle, I usually provide a clear description of the project, and the semantic requirements such as grammatical structures and vocabulary I’m looking for, and the length if possible. The rubrics will cover their end product, their work habits, and their use of language as well as technology. If I was introducing a brand new tool to the students, I will take students to the computer lab to walk them through the process before letting them start the project. I will also provide screencasts for the tool so if students wish to work on the project at home and runs into trouble they will have a place to search for answers.