Gabriela Cambiasso | North America

Innovation

Life in Pictures is the name of our class blog. This is an inspiring and motivating activity that we do in our intermediate writing class. My students become amateur journalists and document small and big moments of their daily life. Using their phones, they take pictures, selfies, or short video clips, post them in our blog, and write about them.

Every week we have a different theme that we all agree on the previous week. Topics range from a restaurant review, to the most precious thing they brought from their country, or from a view from their window to something interesting that happened on the way to school. They also read their classmates postings and comment on them.

Impact

My students finally understood the purpose of writing and reading through this activity. They are highly motivated and they do something that is familiar to them: take pictures and share with their peers. They are motivated to write because they want to share their stories, their experiences, their daily lives. At the same time, they are curious about their classmates and want to read other postings. My students write more and read more. They care about what and how they write. In addition, it helps us develop tighter relationships, as we all get to know things about each other that we would never get to know otherwise.

Gabriela developed a blog to help motivate her students to engage with written English. Although a class blog is becoming more commonplace these days, the judges felt that Gabriela's application showcased particular aspects of creativity and autonomous learning.