Last summer I taught a couple of English courses and sadly realized my students are too engage with technology that they don't know how to write anymore.
Don't get me wrong, they're perfectly able to read and write (decode letters put them together to form words that form sentences and vice versa) with different levels of comprehension when it comes to reading, and limited success when expressing their ideas without the use of emoticons.
It was interesting when I requested them to write an informal email to a friend telling him or her how they were doing and someone came up with:
"Hi, I😄,u 🤔? I 🌃🎉🎉"
It reminded me of a Whatsapp message and I could not see the email, but at least the student tried.
Then again when I requested a postcard and telling a friend about a city they were visiting, a student wrote:
"Hi, postcard, bye"
I came to appreciate technology in class as it can be a great tool if wisely used, but at the same time, it is spoiling some sense of communication that existed a while ago. Instant messaging brought us short forms and emoticons which shorten the time we need to express our ideas but it is making it hard for teachers to work with formal reading and writing when students are unable to complete a simple task as writing an informal letter or a postcard.
I really like teaching, but this kind of problems with students make me rethink things. I was trying to get some "different" ideas so I could get to my students, so I could reach them and show them the importance of writing.
Games and other activities help a lot in class when teaching languages, but technology is usually what holds students' interest for longer, but never for too long. That is where teachers need to become extremely creative, even if we get lucky and the school we work at has all sort of resources, these have become more and more electronic, and not all our tools are electronic. Card and board games and other resources are extremely useful and helpful, even if the teacher has to print and prepare that material on his own on his time at home.
For these reasons, I'm asking for some help to teachers and people who would like to help with this project of mine:
Please if you could send a letter or postcard telling about your city, your culture and maybe a bit about you so I can use them as examples in my classes, you would really help me help my students develop their writing and reading skills.
Thanks in advanced
Correo Central Arequipa
Calle Moral 118 - Arequipa