Google Ning

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					                          Andrew Scott
              Sheridan Japanese School
Presenter Bio
Andrew Scott

 Director of Japanese Language Program and
  Technology, Sheridan Japanese School
 President of COFLT (Confederation in Oregon for
  Language Teaching)
 NCJLT Oshirase Editor and Webmaster, ATJO
 How many of you have a class website? How many of
  you can edit or created it by yourself?
 What do you have on the site? How many of you update
  your site regularly? If so, what do you update?
 Whether or not you have a class website, what would
  you like to have on your website?
 How many of you are familiar with or have a social
  networking site such as Facebook, MySpace, or Ning?
 How many of you have used Google Docs or any of the
  other services Google offers? If so which ones and
Definition of Some Key Terms
 Web 2.0 Versus Web 1.0: The term Web 2.0 describes the current generation of internet-
  based technology which includes social networking, online collaboration and a significant
  increase in interactivity of websites. Web 1.0 describes the previous (?) generation of
  internet-based technology which was primarily webmaster-generated. In other words,
  Web 1.0 consisted merely of one or a group of people presenting information, with little
  collaboration from their audience.

 Blog: A blog or weblog is an easily updateable section of a website in which regular and
  often brief updates occur in a linear, date-based fashion. Some blogs resemble diaries,
  journals, etc., which are either text-based, photo-based, etc. It is an easy way to post
  information quickly to an audience without needing advanced web-training.

 Discussion Forum: A discussion forum is an online tool in which a moderator/member
  posts a question and other members post responses or additional questions on a given
  topic. Even though the posts are not usually real-time, participants are enabled to have a
  two-way (or multi-member) discussion rather than simply reading or updating a blog.

 Live-Chat: Live-chat is a real-time-occurring discussion tool in which responses and
  postings are immediate allowing for increased ability to discuss. As it is real time and
  potentially can have twenty members+ discussing a topic, it is much freeer and less-
  moderated than a discussion forum.
Definition of Some Key Terms
 Pod-Casting: Is much like an audio blog, where participants record audio and
  post it to the internet for those to share.

 Social Network: A social network is an online tool where members can gather
  to share passions and interests, collaborate on tasks, post blogs, and interact
  among other things.

 Twitter/Tweet: Twitter is a basic social networking tool in which users can
  post items and reply to others. Responses and posts are limited to 140
Google Tool Suite and Nings
 Ning: A Ning is a social-networking site, much like Facebook where
  members are given a location to share common interests, discuss
  certain topics, post and view relevant media files, and also collaborate
  on numerous tasks. ** Ning refers to a specific company. Facebook,
  Webjam, MySpace, Wordpress and wikis are alternatives.

 “Google Tool Suite:” The google tool suite is a collection of free tools to
  enhance your use of the internet and improve productivity especially in
  groups. Some of the common features are: Google Calendar, Google
  Docs, Google Sites, etc.
Characteristics of Nings
 Easily designable and editable: You are given a number
 of templates to follow and can install widgets/features
 without any knowledge of web-programming or site

 Can be private or public depending on your goals and
 objectives. If it is a private Ning, you will be required to
 enter a login/password.

 Stored completely online…no server needed.
Characteristics of Nings
 You can upload photos, videos, and documents.
 Completely free of charge even though ads are
 Completely customizable:
   You can brand your site with your school logo, colors, etc.
   You have your own unique web-address
   You choose which widgets and features to use and where
    they are to be lovated.
Common Features/Widgets of
 Online calendar
 Blog
 Discussion forum (in Japanese)
 RSS Feeds (Japan Times headlines, etc.)
 Online Polls
Common Features/Widgets of
 Photo and Video Gallery (Password protected if you

 Group messaging: Can send one message out to
 some or all members

 Live-Chat (Sorry, not in Japanese)

 Many other features---you just have to explore!
Examples of Nings
Ning in the Japanese Classroom
As a communication tool
 Can post events and calendar items with reminders (in Japanese)
 Can give weekly updates/progress reports about the events in your class
 Can communicate with parents about upcoming events, curriculum, etc.
 Can post-grades (to a certain degree) and projects such as videos
 Easy tool for establishing online penpals.

As an organizational tool:
 All assignments and documents can be posted on the calendar in the
  days that they were assigned.
 Students can be reminded daily, weekly, etc… when tests, homework
  are due
Ning in the Japanese Classroom
   As a collaborative tool
     Students, using the discussion form can collaborate to answer questions, have
     conversations, and develop writings, in Japanese. Students have an easy way to
     collaborate on group or whole-class projects.

   As a motivational tool
     As a majority of teenagers and adolescents have had exposure to Twitter,
     Facebook, IM’ing and other social networking tools, using a NIng for classroom
     activities might provide a fun alternative to typical activities.

   Students are given the freedom to post “whatever they like” and will usually
     feel more confident or willing to write and communicate in Japanese.

   By posting videos, music, links, games, and making the site as interactive and
     multimedia-rich as possible, you provide the students with a net-based
     environment to interact with the Japanese culture and language.

   Depending on what access you give them, students can design their own profile,
     avatar, etc.
Sample Ning Activities: Discussion
  Ideal Trip Discussion:
      Give the students this prompt and have them discuss their ideal trip.
      Have other students ask them questions such as PLACE で何をした

      Have the students write a self-introduction in Japanese and have
       each student write three questions of other students.
      Have the students respond to each others’ questions.

  Debating School Uniforms
      Post an article or a series of links regarding Japanese and
       American’s views on school uniforms.
      Assign students to the pro-side of having school uniforms or anti-
       uniform stance.
      Using clear guidelines, have them do an online debate.
Sample Ning Activities: Discussion Forum
   Origami Manual
      Have the students research several origami sites that have instructions on
       how to build origami.
      Have them post links to good websites or origami instructions of their
      Download and make a book out of it/ upload entire “book” to ning.

  Creating a Manual for a Student Coming to Our School from
      Have students come up with multiple pieces of advice (negative and
       positive) for a new student from Japan and create a manual of sorts for the
      A small part of a bigger project.

   Story-Building Activity
      Post a funny picture or photo with lots of things happening in it.
      Have the students write a story describing the photo in Japanese.
      (ALT) Over a period of a few days, have each student rotate writing a line to
       the story.
Sample Activities: Blog Activities
     Have the students go into their Personal Profile/ My
      Page and create a daily/weekly blog.
     Topics can be (what they did over the weekend,
      movie reviews, etc., depending on unit and language-

  Other Blogging:
     Set-Up a section for a sister-school to blog about
     their activities and space for your students to
     Write a blog yourself and ask your students
     questions about its content for extra credit.
Sample Activities: M-Media- Activities
   Small-Tsu Exercise: Post 10 or twelve pairs of word
    with small Tsu in it and ones without small tsu and
    have the students listen and distinguish amongst
    those which have the small tsu and those who do

   Teacher/Guest Podcast: Develop a structured
    listening activity around a pod-cast from someone in
    a sister-school, weather report, newspaper, etc.

   Student-Podcast: Podcast/Upload recordings of
    students oral performances and have them give
    feedback, self-correct, etc.
Sample Ning Activities: M-Media-
Based Activities
   J-Pop: Listen to a JPOP song and critique it in
    Japanese. Post on your blog.

   Instructional Video: Have your ‘advanced’
    students create an instructional video (grammar,
    kanji, conversation, etc.) and have your lower-
    level students use it to learn.
Sample Activities: Misc. Activities
   Online Poll (New Ning App) Have the students
    watch a movie or do an activity and have them
    answer questions in Japanese about it.
     ALT: At the end of the term, have the students fill out
      a class evaluation in Japanese.
   Online Newspaper: Using the RSS Feed (The
    Japan Times), have the students comment on or
    summarize an article
Essential Questions Before Implementing Nings
    Have I taken the proper steps to ensure student and
     school privacy?
      Instruction to students?
      Setting the network as private
      Considered ages of students

    Have I considered all of the issues related to
      Do my students have internet at home? A computer with
       Japanese installed?
      Does my school have a computer lab that students can
      Does my school block social-networking sites?
      Do my students have adequate training in typing in
Essential Questions Before Implementing Ning
   Is my Ning language-level and age- appropriate?
     E.g. Would a 1st year student be able to use the
      discussion board?
   Will this Ning detract from or contribute to
    learning Japanese?
   Have I developed means of assessing student-
    work and providing adequate feedback?
   Is my target purely students, or does it include
    parents, etc.?
Getting the Most Out of Your Ning
   Setup clear objectives, assessment/feedback-
    protocol for every activity you assign.

   Use and update your Ning regularly; don’t put all
    of the effort designing then to forget about it.

   Add and experiment with new functions and
Getting the Most Out of Your Ning
   Personalize it to fit the needs and interests of
    your school or class; make it fun!

   Experiment with pictures and other media…
    don’t just let it be text-based.

   Don’t rely exclusively on your ning for
    reading/writing activities.
Starting a Ning: Getting Started
  1. Visit
  2. Create your own Ning Network name. I chose
     sjsnihongo as mine… your website will be (it must be 6 characters long.)
  3. Sign up for a ning account; please enter an email
     address that you use regularly and a password that
     you will remember.
  4. Click Sign Up.
  5. It will ask you to decide whether your ning is public
     or private; please click private. Add whatever
     information you would like in the remaining boxes.
     Click NEXT when you are done.
Starting a Ning: Features/Design
  1. Please look at the basic features and decide which
     ones you would like. You can drag them
     around…if you do not want something, you may
     drag it onto the grey box. Click NEXT.
    1.   I usually recommend to start out with EVENTS,
         BLOG, FORUM on the left; in the middle, I use (from
         top to bottom: HTML/TEXT BOX, and one other
         feature such as PHOTOS, etc.
  2. Please select a basic theme. If you are
     adventurous, you may change the colors and font-
     sizes, as well as background pictures, etc. Click
Starting a Ning: Adding Info
  1. (General) You can add information or add to
     features, usually by pressing EDIT in the feature
     that you would like to add to.

  2. (Forums and Blogs): Click start a discussion/blog; if
     you want to create larger topics in the forum, then
     you must do so in the control panel/MANAGE.

  3. (Others) Please follow their instructions… they
     should guide you through it.
Starting a Ning: MANAGE
  1. Control Panel (MANAGE) Main Features
     1. Appearance: To change your colors and layout
     2. Members: To approve, suspend, and invite members.
     3. Features: To get rid of or add features
     4. Discussion Forum: To add large topics/discussion
     5. Tab Manager: If you want to have multiple pages in
        your Ning.
     6. Broadcast Message: To send out a message to all of
        your members.
Starting a Ning: Inviting Members
  1. Appearance: To change your colors and layout
  2. Members: To approve, suspend, and invite
  3.   Features: To get rid of or add features
  4.   Discussion Forum: To add large topics/discussion
  5.   Tab Manager: If you want to have multiple pages
       in your Ning.
  6.   Broadcast Message: To send out a message to all
       of your members.
Introduction to Google Docs
 Google Docs is a Google tool which allows for online
    collaboration and sharing of documents,
    presentations, and other files. It is much more
    than a document database; people can collaborate
    online and in real-time to edit documents
Google Docs: Functions/Features
     Office Replacement: Offers a replacement for
      Microsoft Office and Mac Software. You can create
      documents in Google docs without any additional
      software. Auto-save is quite effective.

     Digital Portfolio: Students (and teachers) can create
      folders and place files in them. Sheridan Japanese
      School, instead of paper files, has its own standards-
      based digital portfolio in Google Docs.

     Easy to Upload: It is easy to upload to/ download
      documents from Google Docs. It recognizes a several
      formats, but does not recognize Open Office.
Google Docs: Functions/Features
     Easy to share: With a few button clicks and email
      addresses, you may share documents to anyone
      and restrict access.

     Online/Realtime Collaboration: Multiple users can
      edit the same document simultaneously; you can
      also see who is online.

     Great for keeping notes on students, grades,
      reports, etc. SJS does a great deal of ifs
      paperwork, online, using Google Docs.
Google Docs: Functions/Features
     Document Database: You can store all of your
      handouts and powerpoints online for students to
Google Docs: Demos
     Digital Portfolio
     Basic “Chatroom”
     Powerpoint Project (Japanese Culture)
     School Stuff
     Online Storytelling
     Document Database
Google Docs: Getting Started
     Create a Google account by going to You may either create a
      Gmail account or use your existing email. (Each
      student will need to repeat this once.)

     You will receive a confirmation email within a few
      minutes; use this to activate your account. (Each
      student will need to repeat this once.)

     Begin Creating/Uploading/Organizing
Andrew Scott
 Director of Japanese Language
 Program and Technology
 Sheridan Japanese School (OR)

 President, COFLT (Confederation in Oregon for Language Teaching)
 Oshirase/Website Editor, NCJLT (Nat’l Council for Language Teaching)
 Webmaster, ATJO (Association of Teachers of Japanese in Oregon)

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