Using an iPod shuffle in language lessons

Nick Dempster

I am a Year 6 teacher and ICT co-ordinator for Linaker Primary School in Southport. I am lucky enough to be in a school that embraces ICT whole-heartedly; we give every child in Year 6 an iPad to use in school and at home. We also have sets of laptops for every class throughout the school, an Apple Mac ICT suite and a radio station.

My greatest achievement in ICT so far is helping lead Linaker Primary School to second place in the Make IT Happy 2012 competition.

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Last month our headteacher gave me the challenge of using an Ipod shuffle creatively in a lesson. The easiest answer would be to use it in a music lesson, upload some tracks that could have been used for a dance session, or to play during a big write. I wanted to try to think outside the box a bit though, and began to focus on using the gadget in a less obvious lesson. I was drawn to the unpredictability value of the shuffle button, and wanted to utilise that in the best possible way. After toying with the idea of recording lots of times table facts to be played at random for the children to write the answers, I eventually decided to go with using the ipod shuffle in Spanish. The children were learning about Las Comidas (food). Here's what I did:

  1. Once I had done the initial language acquisition session with the children, I asked individuals to be recorded saying one of the phrases. This was completed on an apple mac recording into audacity (it could just as easily be done using audacity and a microphone on any computer)

Photo credit: Guimo

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