Archive for the ‘Face-to-Face’ Category

Face-to-face and beyond: Smart-board with digitized textbooks and classroom protocols, using MS_Remote Desktop, MS_Zoomit, wireless keyboard, network shares and the Blackboard: Content System

  1. This post strings together some already supported or freely available technologies for an effortless way to integrate technology into teaching and learning.
  2.  I had lab assistants scan my textbook. I stored the scans on the teacher-only network share.
  3. In the classroom, I connect to my office computer with mstsc.
    1. you may have to change screen resolution in mstsc. You can save your connection settings on the teacher network share.
  4. To save precious class contact time, on my office computer, I have already opened and prepared the class outline and relevant textbook scan pages with the default windows viewer.
  5. Using zoomit, I can mark on the textbook scan pages for my students, and save the resulting pages, later easily (drag and drop all pages at once) store them in the content system or my students to review my notes.
    1. you may want to adjust the font size in zoomit options.
  6. this technique may also help with fading out document cameras which may, among other things, help with finding enough space to put.


How to use your office computer in the classroom


  • Click , click , type “mstsc”, click .
  • In the field of the upcoming window, enter your office computer’s IP number (you have to do this only once, the teacher computer will remember the number).
  • This will connect you to your office PC, and if you run mstsc (Microsoft Terminal Services Client) in full-screen, it appears pretty much like working on your office computer.
  • To find out your office IP number, on your office pc, Click , click , type “cmd”, click . cmd. On the command line, type “ipconfig”, your “IP address” appears .
  • Problems? Tell OTS with a link to this post.


  • use your local configuration with which you are most familiar also in class (e.g. US-international keyboard);
  • prepare windows for classes in your office at leisure (windows will show in the state you left them in the office), saving class time;
  • use the computer in class more, saving class time.


  • does not work well with multimedia. Workaround: switch mstsc to window mode and play multimedia from the  local desktop of the classroom PC:
  • make sure you do not have any windows open in the office which you do not want to display in the classroom
  • set your online status to “busy” in Office Communicator and other instant messaging applications, or else others might send disrupting text message pop-ups while you teach
  • possible screen size incompatibilities (mstsc can automatically accommodate for differences, within limits)
  • always test before going live.

An outline of the MS-Word Cloze Quiz, MS-PowerPoint Multiple Choice Quiz and Internet Lookup tools for

  1. To facilitate lesson delivery and student interaction in our language lab and computerized classrooms, I am programming two MS-Office templates with interactive lookup and quiz functions and create new/convert traditional language teaching materials in French, German and Spanish with them.
  2. These templates support the learner by strengthening learner autonomy and providing immediate corrective feedback and – in conjunction with the grouping facilities of the centre’s infrastructure – allow for custom-tailored instruction based on the immediately available outcome of formative assessments.
  3. MS-Word-Template
  4. The student can be given additional hints when tabbing into a form entry field.
  5. The student can easily look up words and terms in internet-based reference works and collections.
    1. Double clicking on a word opens a browser window with the corresponding entry in a dictionary of the corresponding foreign language.
    2. Selecting a word or phrase and clicking on a menu item in the lookup menu a browser window with the corresponding entry of various reference works and databases (Figure 3: Look up Internet Reference Works, Figure 4: Look up Internet Illustrations).
  6. The student will receive instant feedback when tabbing out of an entry field.
  7. During quiz-taking, the screen will be formatted (font face, size, spacing, colors) so that the teacher keeps easily informed, whether through a computer lab management system / screen monitoring tool or by a more “pedestrian” approach for student monitoring.
  8. After collection and before correction by the teacher and reviewing by the student, the screen will be re-formatted to facilitate reading outside of the classroom setting.
  9. The template can be used for a wide variety of typical foreign language teaching exercises:
    1. Listening comprehension exercises (Figure 3: Quiz Template with Chanson Lyrics)
    2. Grammar drills
    3. Model imitation drills
    4. Information-gap dialogues (Figure 7: Information Gap Dialogues (Language Lab Example).
  10. Instructors have requested fuzzy matching for fill-in-the-blank exercises, which I am planning to implement by integrating an existing COM add-in that can make available the Levenshtein Distance Metric to MS-Word.
  11. Upgrade of Templates from Sanako Lab300 to better integrate with the new Sanako Study1200 software features.
  12. Teaching Content Creation:
    1. Making subtitles for foreign language movie digitally available;
    2. Programming regular expressions ins VS.Net that match function words (example: demonstrative pronouns in Spanish) to run over these templates in order to batch create fill-in-the-blank exercises;
    3. Importing them into the templates and creating grammar and listening comprehension exercises
  13. Support: Implementing an Error Logging Application
  14. MS-PowerPoint-Template
  15. The teacher can easily lookup words and terms in internet-based reference works and collections
    1. Currently implementing additional lookup options (NLP and Corpus Linguistics (ACORN, BNC, Sketchup), Dictionaries (Visurwords, Wiktionary, Google Define).
    2. A number of templated custom-animated exercises can be used for
      1. presenting students with guiding questions before watching/listening to a target language segment
      2. Revealing correct answers after the segment.
  16. A number of templated interactive exercises can be used for revealing correct answers (word lists) depending on students’ responses.
  17. The templates support typical activities in the digital language lab (interactive presentations with multimedia, listening comprehensions, speaking and dialoguing activities for language learning, view usage examples in my Templates Eurocall Presentation video of September 2007). Teachers can use them as exercise-generating engines: they allow copy/paste of their own exercises into these templates. These templates have the advantage of being able to hook into the rich infrastructure that MS-Office provides for language teaching; they work with all Western Languages (but have been thoroughly tested only with ESL, French, German, Italian and Spanish so far). These templates that are better geared than VLE and other CALL resources for daily use in a computerized classroom environment: easy to author, take and monitor and either multimedia-heavy or focused on human interaction. These templates support the instructor by relieving of routine tasks in favor of well-informed, well-focused non-routine intervention, and extend the centre’s screen-sharing and VOIP infrastructure to provide the instructor with an unprecedented control of the learning of an entire class.
  18. APP delivery format:
    1. MS-PowerPoint: 1 template-file (.pot) and 1 addin (.ppa)
    2. MS-Word: 1 template (.dot – incorporates Lookup application) and 1 COM application (fuzzy matching)
  19. Apart from the templates themselves, there is
    1. Explanation: documentation of the tool
      1. see Figure 4: Template Documentation,
      2. Figure 8: PowerPoint Exercise Templates,
    2. sample materials which illustrate the practical exploitation of a tool the development of a skill or the response to an issue
      1. see Figure 3: Quiz Template with Chanson Lyrics
      2. Figure 9: PowerPoint-Exercises for German History Documentary,
    3. Sample Exercise material: hands-on activities for materials development, skills training or discussion
      1. Figure 9: PowerPoint-Exercises for German History Documentary)
  20. Since January 2008, the templates have been adapted for use in the Aston university Study1200 lab and a series of 3 teacher training workshops has been delivered in May/June of 2008. During that time, the implementation of the distance metrics within the templates has been started also which is currently still in the debugging state (see following slide below.)


Figure 1: Look up Internet Reference Works


Figure 2: Look up Internet Illustrations


Figure 3: Quiz Template with Chanson Lyrics


Figure 4: Template Documentation


Figure 5: Quiz Result Summary


Figure 6: Spanish Movie Subtitling Exercise Creation


Figure 7: Information Gap Dialogues (Language Lab Example)


Figure 8: PowerPoint Exercise Templates