Using Themeefy to teach Foreign Languages

A few months ago, I wrote about a workshop I attended on the use of Social Media in teaching French as a Foreign Language. (Read the post here.) I walked away from the workshop with lots of ideas for class, especially with Themeefy. I have of course experimented with Themeefy in my own classes (you can see the result here). Today, much to my delight, almost accidentally, I stumbled upon a beautiful use of Themeefy by a group of students.

While I don’t have any details of the group, their level or the instructions given to the students, I would say they are students of level A1. The professeur seems to have asked the students to create Themeefy Mags to present a French city and the cultural activities possible over a weekend. (See the Mags embedded here.) All the magazines had the common elements of a map and websites pointing to various places to visit, such as the city museum, theatre etc.

Seeing the magazines made me realize that I had a wonderful use case sitting here right in front of me! One of the most important topics in the beginner’s level in any foreign language is suggesting an outing / proposing an itinerary for a weekend. Themeefy lends itself beautifully to this task. Teachers can ask the students to do the following :

  1. Select a city of their choice. It could be a city previously discussed in class, a city they have heard of or the teacher could suggest a list of cities to work with.
  2. Look up the city on Google and get a map of the city on which they have to later mark the tourist spots they present.
  3. Visit different sites to suggest popular tourist spots & cultural activities during a weekend trip.
  4. Suggest some hotels for a 1 night stay to suit different budgets.
  5. Compile all these sites in their Themeefy Mag entitled : A weekend in…

The exercise would make students visit different sites in the language being learnt, discover cultural aspects of the country (& language) and lead to an excellent repertoire of information that the students can later exchange. Since the Themeefy Mags can easily be embedded in Blogger, Tumblr and self-hosted WordPress blogs, the teacher can then present the student’s work on a class blog, serving as an excellent motivation for the students to work harder on their Mags.

For more information about Themeefy, you can visit this page.

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