Language teaching with authentic content is a great way to engage your advanced students. The goal of every student is to be able to communicate in their target language. This means the content consumed should be authentic content not academic content. No one wants to complete a language course, only to find out they speak like a textbook!
Some of the main advantages of using authentic content are (Philips and Shettlesworth 1978; Clarke 1989; Peacock 1997, cited in Richards, 2001):
- They have a positive effect on learner motivation.
- They provide authentic cultural information.
- They provide exposure to real language.
- They relate more closely to learners ‘ needs.
- They support a more creative approach to teaching.
When learners are exposed to authentic content they feel they are learning the ‘real’ language. Colango offers a great way to deliver authentic content to your students.
There’s a large variety of authentic content on Youtube (especially in English) great for language learning! Movie trailers, music videos, or even TV shows can be great sources of authentic content to engage your students! If your Youtube video has captions, Colango can automatically pull those captions and turn it into a dictation exercise.
Blogging can be another creative way to engage your students. Encourage your students to create their own blog posts in their target language or have them follow your blog posts. Download the Colango android app to make studyposts while you’re out on the go.
What ways do you use authentic content in your world languages class?
Colango is currently available on Android but will be launched as a web version at the end of January 2015. If you’re interested in being a Beta tester please email firstname.lastname@example.org.