Thursday, 29 September 2011

Guest post: SpeedUpTV – Helps To Hone Your Foreign Language Learning Skills

SpeedUpTV is a new iOS-based application, compatible with the iPhone. This application provides rich features that have made it a popular choice among various iPhone users. Some iPhone users, like foreign language students, find this application simply amazing. SpeedUpTV is an effective app for improving your listening comprehrension skills. For example, if you have trouble understanding some dialogue in your favorite drama or an important part during a movie you can always replay or slow it down and loop it so you can understand what was said more clearly.

Let me explain in more detail. You can decrease the speed to 0.5X meaning you can slow down the speech of a video. Moreover, you can choose playback speed of 0.5x, 1x, 1.5x, 2x or 2.5x without sacrificing on quality of the video. This can be helpful when watching educational videos or maybe a lecture in English or any other foreign language. 
This app helps students clarify their errors and make the necessary changes to improve fluency. I found this app to be of great use for people trying to learn a new language. I was able to slowdown the speed of video to better understand what the speaker was saying. SpeedUpTV is a great tool for improving listening skills. By listening to the video slowly and then progressively faster, I was able to better understand each dialogue and the nuances of pronunciation. 

For those of you having trouble understanding the dialogue in your favorite foreign dramas because of the speed of their speech this app might help you improve your listening comprehension skills while also enjoying learning a foreign language.

AppsAsia is a South Korean-based company passionately dedicated to providing marketing, promotion and advertising services for Korean iPhone application developers.

If you are interested in this app, I have 4 redeem codes to give away, courtesy of AppsAsia. Just send me an email at and the first four will get them.


Thursday, 15 September 2011

Social Bookmarking: an essential 21st century skill for educators

Since the very beginning of the internet, and even more so these days with the endless number of useful websites and applications that we come across every day as educators, the need to organize our findings has become an essential skill. Fortunately, there are many tools that can help us to achieve this much needed organization of resources, referred to as social bookmarking.

This video about social bookmarking is a great introduction to the topic

The video also introduces the concept of tagging, which is expanded in this one.

A main consideration about tagging is consistency. Tags have to work for you, but good tags also work for the rest. Decide whether you will use a singular or plural noun (animal or animals?), and infinitive or a gerund (tag or tagging?), etc to make it easier to find things.

If you want to read further about social bookmarking and tagging, here are 2 interesting articles

Social Bookmarking applications

Now you are ready to start bookmarking content. There are many social bookmarking applications with slight differences. I have compiled a list for you to see and choose the one you like best.

1)       Delicious, which was also mentioned in the social bookmarking video. Delicious is very simple to use and has many users so you can benefit from what they are bookmarking too.

2)      Diigo is a fantastic application for social bookmarking. It allows tagging, but also highlighting parts of the website and adding comments with sticky notes. Definitely my favourite!

Taking Diigo beyond the bookmark is an interesting article about the potential of Diigo.

3)      Simply Box is a visual way of collecting bookmarks by adding them to a box, where you can see the screenshots of the bookmarked website.

4)      LiveBinders works in a similar way by adding websites to a particular binder, with multiple tabs within.

Other tools to explore



Bag the Web


Skloog and Symbaloo allow you to create shortcuts to your favourite websites and use as a startpage. I can see a great potential here for sharing useful resources with students visually in one page.



Hope you have found something useful! If you know of other tools or have any other ideas, please share in the comments.