Saturday, April 2, 2011
I chose Voki as my Web 2.0 tool. It is a free service that provides a speaking avatar for any social media. I created my character, which you can edit to suit your desires. My character is a Boxer dog, and I published him on my blog site. You can see him on the left side of my blog page. The choice of characters I believe was limited; however, since you are allowed to edit the avatar, there are many variations depending on the original character that you choose. I then added voice to my character, but I was not able to add my voice, because the program would not allow me to upload from my saved sound bites. However, I was able to text in what I wanted it to say, so if you push the play button you will hear what I have to say.
Voki has an education page that allows for you to become a part of their social network. Users have access to lesson plans, a Teacher's Corner, and endless tips for using Voki in the classroom. The Voki site led me to watch a video on teachers.tv about how foreign language teachers used Voki. The objective was to increase interest and motivate students to use technology (Voki and social media) for lessons in foreign languages. I have included both links at the bottom of this blog. The teachers and students who participated in this program were pleased with the results of their efforts.
The Voki avatar creator was easy to use, and I think the anonymity that it affords young people to participate in social media is invaluable. Therefore, I highly recommend this Web 2.0 tool.