Practical ideas II

30 Oct

The suggestions in this group all make use of online technology. In some cases, the students will also need access to this technology.

  • This activity is a valuable way of looking again at a text that you have already studied in class, perhaps four or five lessons previously. But it can also be used with any text that has intrinsic interest (e.g. current news). Type a text into an online translation tool (see 25 October posting: Web resources) and convert it into your students’ mother tongue. Distribute this to the students, whose task (in groups) is to edit the translation to make it ‘acceptable’. To help them, you may underline the bits that need attention.
  • Google Translate offers translations that are usually riddled with errors. However, if you point the cursor over the offered translation, it breaks it down into shorter phrases which you can then click on to be offered alternative translations. Students can usefully work in groups going through the alternatives that are on offer, selecting the best … or rejecting them all, and replacing with their own versions.
  • Find a movie clip in original English with subtitles in the students’ language. Show the students the clip with the sound down. Their task is to work out what was actually said. Once done, they can compare their versions with the original. If you think your students would enjoy this kind of work, check out http://levis.cti.gr/ … ‘levis’ stand for ‘learning via subtitling.
  • Translating video clips (from English) is often more motivating than using a paper-based text. If your students work with movie extracts, they will also be focusing, inevitably, on dialogue. They will enjoy seeing their own subtitles appear on screeen, and this is easily achieved. See http://www.ehow.com/how_4784602_own-subtitles.html for easy-to-follow instructions.
  • Chuchotage (or lectoring) is a voice-over simultaneous translation that is still used on TV in some countries. Find short clips that you want your students to work on (or, perhaps, they can select their own). In groups, the students prepare a mother tongue voice-over script to accompany the clip. It usually works best if the students must do this orally, without taking written notes. They then practice delivering their mother tongue voice-over so that it is synchronised with the clip. Finally, they present their work to other groups of students.
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One Response to “Practical ideas II”

  1. philipjkerr November 16, 2011 at 11:02 am #

    There’s an entertaining clip on Youtube of some bad English subtitles for a bootleg copy of one of the Lord of the Rings films:

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