When I first got to know the application called “Quizlet” in 2015, it was not very well known among teachers in S.Korea(I could easily figure it out by merely searching some contents written in Korean), and I was also unacquainted with it.
At that time, I was teaching English to 180 students in the elementary school and was struggling with the gap of vocabulary and grammar skills between them. Considering that involving students to this web-based program inside and outside the classroom might be a feasible solution, I started to devise a “Vocabulary Enrichment Project” and practiced this project for two years. I didn’t just include this app in the classroom. Merging this app with some strategies, I tried to develop a learning ecosystem.
How I designed the learning environment
Technology is an enabler – it can empower teachers and students to engage in an entirely different form of education in classroom settings. However, at the same time, it should be integrated with the adequate contents and pedagogical models. Without such integration, technology will degenerate into fancy gadgets.
There were several points I tried to focus on when designing the project.
This project aimed to “Enhance overall student’s vocabulary skills regardless of student’s background – parental socioeconomic status, their prior knowledge.” I tried to keep on eye on this goal through the whole process and reminded this goal frequently (except the parental background part) to the students too.
Enticing students at an early stage of the learning process is pretty easy but bringing their motivation consistently with the right educational objective is a whole new problem.
I wanted them to actively engage in the activity for the whole learning pathways with their own intrinsic motivations. On top of it, I wanted to offer them a unique self-learning experience so that it can last for their life long education.
I applied Keller’s ARCS Motivation Model to the activities and process in the project to achieve these goals. The table below is how I merged ARCS theory into my class.