The Song of Myself

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The Song of Myself
The Song of MySelf : Student Edition

An online interactive corpus-based writing course of language learners


Author: Trudie Heiman
Publisher: Lexicalport.com
First Published: 1995(Paper editions)
DigitalEdition: 4th edition
ISBN Status: TBA: Non Registered
Beta Versions: 2010 with ongoing updates

Please note: All student work removed from LMS area after 1 year 3 months.


The Lexicalportfolio Course : Teacher Edition

for teachers to create classes/manage student grades/ a custom made

LSM (learning management system). Includes full (static) copy of student version along with the
LSM. (Price includes Teacher's pdf manual available soon Please request this by email)
Author: G.H.Heiman
Publisher: Lexicalport.com
ISBN Status: TBA: Non- Registered
Edition: 1st edition: Digital only
by subscription only: 2 year

Please note:

Due to constrained budgets of institutions, teachers and students , we are pleased to offer these deeply discounted prices while we re -rebuild these courses to suit current needs. We would love to hear your ideas for input via Contact Us button

  • Student work/ results remain in LMS area for 2 years 6 months.
  • All student data downloadable to Excel Files/Numbers Files

Reviews

4.3

8 ratings

75%

16%

12%

9%

0%

What I liked about the course:

*Prof. McCrohan very kindly provided this feed back from beta testing The Lexicalportfolio Course in a one semester course with false beginner level Technology Students from Kagawa University April- August 2011, now posted here in our new reviews section.
  • The students certainly enjoyed the course.  We had a lot of fun and there was quite a bit of laughter.
  • It was stress-free for the students.  I think having the computer in front of them acted a bit like a "security blanket" for a small child.  
  • They learned a lot about giving presentations in English, using PowerPoint and designing multi-media slides.
  • Most students gave very good, well-structured and entertaining final presentations.   
  • They learned the importance of citation, something even Japanese professors often don't seem to understand.
  • They learned to navigate around the net a bit better in English.
  • They became more aware of what sort of tools there are on the net to help them improve their English translation and typing skills.
  • The rebus stories were also a big hit.  Really creative stories and good fun!
  • Not having a textbook!  I had no hassles with students forgetting them or losing them!
  • The flexibility of each student having his or her own word list.
Reply:-

Please note: Lexicalport.com welcomes feed back from our users and incorporates suggestions when possible.

Thank You Prof. McCrohan For your very detailed reply: I am sure other teachers will find these observations from your field testing of these materials very useful.

We had a lot of problems with them using Google translate.  It is very poor at translation even of single words and often picked really obscure translations when there was a more normal and natural translation.  Sometimes I picked up on it but for some of the translations my Japanese wasn't good enough. Yes, I know there was a warning about this but I don't think students really understood how bad it was at times.

Just a few points that cause problems:

Reply:-

Paper dictionaries using translation are notorious for their limitations also, so we encourage students to use all English only dictionaries if at all possible.

Lack of student-to-student interaction.   In a lot of the classes students were just working individually on their own presentation slides or playing the games rather than communicating with their classmates or me.  I think the next time I use this, I will ask the students to work in pairs choosing some words from both their lists, deciding on a theme etc. together and giving their final presentation together.  They did test each other weekly in the 10 slides they had made for homework.

Reply:-

We encourage teachers to do many of these activities as a whole class: activity: Such as eliciting responses from students while playing games, Giving students short useful phrases to use with their answers: such as "I think it might be... ".It is..., "Is it... ?""Maybe it is...." etc. appropriate to the activities and classroom to encourage them to engage with the teacher. As you suggest getting students to do activities together and asking them to share their results with each other would increase communication opportunities.

Most of my students did not make slides for every word they didn't know - the average student made about 80 slides in total partially because of Tech. students are very busy compared with students in the Economics or Law Faculties and also because their base level is so much lower. Some students didn't know 300+ words in the 1000 word lists. It took them a long time to complete the tests at the beginning and also a long time to read through units. As a result, I doubt there was much improvement to their vocabulary but I suspect, their reading ability (speed, scanning) did increase.

Reply:-

The vocabulary size tests have now been made more user friendly for low-level students with English questions and Japanese answers: (on recommendation of Paul Nation) For learners with other mother tongues please go to the URLs provided. Students on average seem to learn 300 new words a year: This data has not been thoroughly tested but is offered from my observations as a teacher with my students. So students studying 80 words in one semester seems to be an appropriate response.Also, some of the assignments are probably be best done as homework assignments rather than as a classroom assignment. G.H.Heiman

I would have liked to see more examples of people giving presentations built into the site.  I used a video from another textbook and I photocopied materials from various textbooks to cover things like the importance of eye contact, posture, using gestures, how to incorporate the slide into their presentation, voice techniques (stretching, pausing, etc) - this was covered a little in a unit towards the end.

Reply:-

Lexicalport.com encourages teachers to add to these course materials as they feel appropriate to their class level and situation. Use the upload function in the LSM and share word documents/ audio files and distribute your additions to all or selected students through the internal messaging system.

Many, if not most, of the games were too difficult for the level of my students and it was a bit text-dense in places.

Reply:-

Your observation is appreciated and will be reviewed. It is our hope to keep the content as authentic as possible and use very short passages which are less intimidating to students.

Would love to see a unit on using statistics in presentations.  For an academic presentation on almost any topic, statistical charts, graphs and tables are needed. We did a little of this - most of my students didn't know words like profit, budget, account, turnover, etc. so they all made some statistical slides and did a mini presentation.

Reply:-

We encourage teachers to upload and add materials appropriate to their class and situation.

Overall, we enjoyed the course and it was certainly beneficial for them.  I will certainly use it again next year, if we keep the same syllabus.  We are re-writing the syllabuses at the moment and TOEIC score will divide students with set textbooks for each level.  I am going to try and have both your courses included in the list of approved "textbooks".

PS. Please add to my list of good points that  - Students grasped the concept of collocation and knew how to find and use websites that help them use it.  Students were graded primarily on their mid and final presentations.

Reply:-

Your very detailed feedback is very much appreciated and we thank you so very much for using our materials and supporting us.

  • By the way, the journal think me about important things in daily life I don't think such things as forgiveness, a magic day, gratitude , etc. Thanks to the journal I know myself little . I learned not only English but knowledge.
  • I don't keep my dairy so the journal is a good opportunity to think and write about myself.  
  • The journal writing was the most useful for me to improve my English.
  • In the journal, I have to know many words. I have to look for many words. After all I could know many words.
  • P.S. The journal helped my English and this is my treasure.
Reply:- These comments were selected from a few of my students' journals which were created over 16+year period in classes I taught. This text book was a paper edition at that time. If any of my former students wander by here many thanks for your hard work and I would be delighted to hear from you. Trudie Heiman
  • I was reading through the students' journals for the Song of Myself to do a final check of their work and write my Happy Trails letter, and this year, just as with every year, I love the results! The students who do the work (there are always a few who put off the first few weeks and then can't overcome the tsunami of writing) really get into it and do a fantastic job.
  • I have to take my hat off to you for creating such a great writing guide! Some of the students comments are just what a teacher likes to hear, such as "I hated it in the beginning, but kept going and learned a lot about myself." Thank you again and again.
Reply:- Professor Ulvog: Many thanks for providing these very kind words of praise. I am so grateful to you for using this text book with your students over many long years. I am even more pleased to hear you and your students felt you got real value from these materials; value in terms of moving your students' English skills ahead and value in terms of the personal development topics being meaningful journal writing activities. Thanks so much for your support over the years.