Are YouTubers the next gen teachers?

Les tutos de Huito came up as part of a  discussion on the French news programme TFI which comes up on my Facebook feed whether YouTubers were the nextgen Teachers.  They had a variety of popular instructional clips and Huito was one of the featured YouTubers. The students interviewed loved his clips and found them very helpful and they are. They would be great as part of a flipped classroom approach or even to use a clip in class and develop it further. These sorts of clips encourage independent learning and that is what you are always trying to aim for – lifelong learning techniques. Personalised learning. Is it a good methodology to teach languages? The students spoke for themselves. Yes. I taught languages for 42 years and this is one of the most successful ways of getting students to participate in learning languages. You  have to run the lesson bilingually and as a natural conversation. Why? So many students feel embarrassed/bad/anxious/inadequate when they are learning a language. The trick is to mix their own language in with the new one and increasingly leave the first language out of it but to pop it back in as you are talking to facilitate conversation. Running the two has the advantage of supporting bilingual brain development. You then celebrate that you spoke for 5, 10, 20 mins in the target language. A whole lesson. You can set the goal, okay, I am going to speak in French for 5 minutes and you will do your best to understand what I am saying and you will tell me after what you understood. With technology it is so easy – you can draw on the IWB (however badly), you can show pictures or put up words or sentences. This all comes down to planning. Huito has thought out what he is presenting. He has his explanations in French to allay learner fears and he focuses on small amounts of English which he repeats to ensure there is a linguistic ease and facility for the learner. Bit by bit the learner will get English and then eventually will move on to immersion language videos. Most need this bilingual conversational step . It works. The more ways students have of learning then the better it will be. Clips like this are part of a learning and teaching toolkit.

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