Using activities such as games to learn languages makes it more fun to study. Teachers can take advantage of these techniques to keep their students interested by utilizing digital tools to successfully gamify their language classrooms.
Dexway is committed to making language learning fun, allowing students to progress through courses and gain knowledge by practicing with interactive and entertaining content. Learning through play is one of the most effective ways to keep students motivated and engaged.
To gamify a classroom for language learning that will give good results, it is essential that all the activities have objectives and goals. Dexway courses reward student performance and effort with points and medals, letting students compete with the rest of their group. Offering small incentives instead of just one main goal—to improve language skills—encourages students to be more committed to studying.
This was studied by Sailer, Hense, Mayr and Mandl, from German universities Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität Münche and Justus-Liebig-Universität Gießen in “How gamification motivates: An experimental study of the effects of specific game design elements on psychological need satisfaction”. They explain how implementing games in non-game contexts creates the psychological need to achieve these goals to obtain a certain degree of satisfaction. In other words, adding challenges motivates students to surpass others and to better themselves.
In addition to monitoring and assessments to verify that the goals set are exceeded and the valued points are awarded, the activities themselves can also have a degree of gamification. Dexway language courses contain various exercises and many have playful characteristics designed to make studying fun:
#1 Crossword puzzles and word searches
Vocabulary exercises with crossword puzzles and word searches to practice writing and vocabulary.
#2 Online community
Online communities allow more relaxed and social activities, encouraging participation outside and inside the classroom. Dexway virtual communities use a star system that rewards students for participating in different activities (forums, message boards, conversation groups). The communities can be global, where all Dexway students meet, or closed, with only students from the same center. In this way, centers have more control over the activities carried out in the community.
#3 Vocabulary flashcards
Students must select the correct image according to the audio that is played or the text that appears on the screen.
#4 Vocabulary practice with dice
To strengthen vocabulary, these exercises add the incentive of having a dice that offers a random practice, where words or sentences marked as learned are no longer shown.
Interactive activities where you match words in one column with their corresponding word in the other column.
#6 Rearrange sentences
Another fun challenge is to rearrange the words in a sentence. In this way, students subliminally practice grammar while having fun.
With Dexway Authoring Tool, teachers have access to an extensive library of exercises and resources that they can use for their language classes. They can even rearrange them or add new ones from the exercise bank. In addition, teachers can create their own exercises. A new feature is that templates are now available to generate crossword puzzles and word searches from scratch in a simple and intuitive way.
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