Saturday 31 January 2009

Voicethread and Voxopop

This week we have been experimenting with Voice thread and Voxopop (formerly Chinswing).

I am new to Voicethread, so I'll need some time to explore it and become familiar with it.

As regards Voxopop, I have used it before and I love it! I have used
it for basic listening, for example I created a coversation called
"Introductions from around the world" where you can listen to different people introducing themselves and talking about their cities and professions.

I also thought of creating one so that students tell me and each other
about their holidays. Since we have quite numerous classes in my
school (about 40), each student's speaking time is very short. This is
a good way to generate more speaking opportunities and, as Rita
pointed out, to maximise exposure to the language.

This is the lesson plan for it.

Summer holidays
Vicky Saumell


This class is made up of 40 students, boys and girls of about 16 years old in their 4th year of secondary education (one year before graduation). They have English classes for 3 hours a week and they need as much exposure to English as possible. They school year is from March to December, so when we meet this March they will have just had their holidays.


To have students talk about their summer holidays


By the end of this activity, students will be able to:

• Post a recording of their holidays on Voxopop
• Comment on their classmates holiday reports.

Rationale for the activity

This activity mainly focuses on developing speaking fluency by asking the students to talk about a familiar topic. It is also a learner centered task and allows for personal interaction among the students.


1) Students get familiar with Voxopop in class (20 mins)
2) Students record their holiday report on Chinswing (10 mins)
3) Students listen to other students’ reports (30 mins)
4) Students comment or ask questions about someone else’s holiday (10 mins)
5) Students reply to comments or questions. (10 mins)

Anticipated Problems/Solutions:

Problem: The activity could take longer than expected the first time as many students will want to make multiple recordings.

Solution: Once they have become familiar with Voxopop operation, and if we run out of time, students can do the remaining work at home.


Students can then comment on their favourite holidays in class. They can also comment on the usefulness of the tool.


  1. Great ideas! I really enjoyed reading your blog! I still have to learn how to use Chinswing but after reading your lesson plan I can´t wait to learn how to use it and make the most of it now that classes are about to begin.

  2. Hi Vicky!
    As you know, I'm a fan of your "Introductions from around the world" Chinswing project. Well, I think this new project will be equally successful.

    Your plan is very well designed and organized, and the activities you've chosen are highly motivating. It feels like a very feasible plan, something that can be done successfully in many different teaching situations.

    Please let me know when you implement it. I don't want to miss it!