1. Your principal has asked the FL department to present justification for implementing a FLES program in your district. She is in favor of this, but she would like you to make a presentation at the school board meeting to convince the board members and the public. For this report, you want to garner as many research articles as possible that have shown early language instruction to be beneficial in numerous ways. You know you could do an ERIC database search at the local university library for a bibliography, but you do not have much time to gather this research. It occurs to you that you could also find this information readily available on-line by using Gopher.
2. You have a question about a cultural item you want to teach in your FL class, and you need the advice of a native speaker. You would like to post your question on the Internet and see what kind of answers you receive. Your school has only one Internet account thus far that all teachers must use. Consequently, you only have infrequent access. You might seek an answer to your question by accessing Usenet .
3. You just read an article in a professional journal written by someone you knew in college whom you haven't seen since you graduated. You want to send a congratulatory letter and some catch-up information about yourself, but the only address listed is for this person is an electronic address--not via the U.S. postal service. You can probably use E-mail to contact your friend.
4. You are beginning work on a grant project with colleagues from several different institutions. You want to set up a virtual meeting where everyone can meet, introduce themselves, and share some about each one's part of the project. Because of the grant funding, each participant has access to very fast and direct Internet access. The logical way to run this initial meeting is with CUSeeMe.
5. During this project, you will all need to exchange information frequently. The most expedient way to communicate regularly and briefly with your colleagues will be via E-mail.
6. You and your colleagues will also need to look at each other’s work in progress, making editorial comments and suggestions. Typically this will involve large bodies of information, such as would not be optimally sent via e-mail. It will be most efficient for project participants to transfer files of information back and forth using FTP.
7. You would like to see if your students will "talk" more in class in the TL if they can do so with some degree of anonymity--IOW, if the peer pressure of talking in front of others isn't there. Your idea is to set up a conversation or debate on-line where each student has an identity, a role to play, and can participate to the degree they feel comfortable. You decide to reserve the computer lab for your classes, and you will run this activity using Internet Relay Chat.
8. In the teacher's lounge one day, one of your FL colleagues is going on and on about a professional resource she's found on the Internet that helps her keep current and provides a constant source of new ideas for her classroom activities. She then proceeds to show you a 3-page printout of suggestions for teaching about a particular holiday in her TL culture that she got from this resource in the previous few days. What a wealth of information! You decide it would be a good idea to look further into this Electronic Discussion Group.
9. A few of your advanced language students are looking for even more challenging activities than the ones provided in your class. In particular, they wish to have more contact with native speakers (NSs) of the TL they are studying so they can practice their communication skills. You decide to send them to the computer lab and have them access a site where they will feel as though they are in a virtual TL reality, complete with NSs and even a café where they can all sit down and chat. Your students are participating in a MOO.
10. For a travel unit, you designate groups of students as travel agents for a specific TL country. These students must put together a travel package for two tourists for a week that will contain all the necessary information (airfare, hotels, tourist attractions) and that will be appealing to the clients. Your FL colleagues are the judges of the projects—these are the "clients" to whom the agents must sell their packages. To get all this information and have it as current as possible, your students will need to access the World Wide Web.
O.K., how did you do? If you did great, then move along to Learning the basics . If you didn't do so well, go back to Getting acquainted with the tools, re-read the information, and then zip through the quiz the next time.