How to Teach Languages to Digital Natives Posted by Transparent Language on Sep 28, 2015 in Language Learning, Language News, Trends
Nearly three-quarters of students (74%) claim they would do better in school if their instructors used more technology. 61% agreed that learning would improve if homework were more interactive. Whether these claims, gathered in a survey of 519 students, would produce the expected results is unclear. But one thing is crystal clear: younger generations of students are increasingly motivated by technology.
Something that motivates students to learn? No wonder why so many language teachers are chomping at the bit to incorporate technology in their lessons. We interact with language teachers both in person and on social media on a daily basis. Their tech savviness and willingness to experiment in (and ultimately improve) their classrooms never ceases to amaze us.
Unfortunately, however, overhauling traditional lesson plans and adopting new technologies can be time consuming. Too often, technology is integrated directly into the classroom, in the form of videos or other passive activities. This limits the time spent actually confirming the learning and interacting with peers. Producing the language and using it in context is paramount to proficiency.
Language teachers cannot use technology simply for the sake of using technology. Today’s students are digital natives who have come to expect more out of technology. That’s why we’ve designed Declaratively Accelerated Blended Learning (DABL). This flipped classroom approach, optimized specifically for language programs, blends technology and human instruction in a way that keeps students engaged and reliably propels learners toward their goals.
In a DABL curriculum, students learn words and phrases at home in a game-like online learning environment. Learning vocabulary is much more exciting when it involves matching games, speech-driven multiple choice questions, and memory drills. Talk about motivation. Students then arrive at class prepared to use those words in phrases during interactive activities. They can perform skits, have a debate, or myriad other compelling tasks that give them the opportunity to use the language in context, interact with peers, and receive immediate feedback from the instructor. Our language teachers are far more qualified to design and facilitate these activities than to simply click the Play button to start a video, don’t you think?
We’ve watched DABL transform the way we teach and learn languages to professionals, producing reliable results in less time and at less cost. These working adults require better language proficiency for their jobs in defense, healthcare, humanitarian aid, diplomacy, scientific research, and beyond. But learning outcomes matter for K-12 and college students, too. Today’s students are tomorrow’s leaders, after all.
Curious about using DABL in your language classroom? Learn more or contact us!