Use of the Internet when Learning or Teaching English
|Brief history of the Internet
|The Internet in Education
|Information Technologies in teaching foreign languages in Latvia
|My own experience of using the Internet
|The Internet as a tool
|What do we need in order to use the Internet in the school?
|How to search the Internet
|Top tips for Internet searching
|Examples of using the Internet when teaching English
|The Internet and the communicative approach
|A list of useful web pages
|Recommendations and suggestions when using the Internet for teaching English
Nowadays it is hard to imagine our society without computers and the Internet. It has become a usual thing to have a computer at home and at school. Once you have a computer connected to the Internet, you get an access to the infinite amount of information. You can read news or books; look for any kind of information, download video clips, listen to the radio etc. In fact the computer is an interactive tool that can be used by anyone and almost in any field. I mean also for learning and teaching purposes. For example, if we type www.google.lv in a web browser address line, and enter "teaching English" into the search command line we would see how much information is available online. I am quite good at computers and for me working with the Internet is easy. I often use the Internet for learning and teaching purposes and I am quite satisfied with it.
The Internet is introduced as a comparatively new tool in teaching English in Latvia. It is not widely spread but still it has a potential to become an essential teaching resource for the future and present teachers. The Internet can be used differently. Teachers can use it for gathering information for their classes, including teaching plans and materials for classroom use. They can subscribe to mailing lists and electronic journals by e-mail and keep contacts with other teachers from all over the world. You do not need to be a genius in order to be able to use these resources, but still you require some hints and that is one of the reasons why I have decided to write this paper.
My aim is to popularize the Internet among the teachers and students in order to make their learning or teaching process more up-to-date, unusual and efficient. In order to reach the aim I will investigate possible ways of using the Internet in the process of teaching English and explain how to use it efficiently. I want to make my paper useful for the teachers who are unfamiliar with the Internet.
The paper has brief information on the origin of the Internet, the possible ways of using the Internet when learning or teaching English, opinions of different methodologists, information on how to use Internet searching tools, useful links to the web pages dedicated to English learning.
Theme of the paper Use of the Internet when learning or teaching English
Aim of the paper to find out the ways of possible use of the Internet when teaching English, to popularise the Internet among English teachers in Latvia
Objectives of the paper to explore the Internet resources, to introduce a method of teaching with the help of the Internet
Subject of the paper Use of the Internet when learning or teaching English
Methods of the research Theoretical research methods – analysis of materials about the Internet, web pages dedicated to teachers, online newspaper sites, exploration of the Internet resources, development of a strategy of using the Internet.
The Internet itself is a kind of international network that operates worldwide. It is simply an organization of computers that can all communicate with each other. No one exactly knows how many computers are connected to the Internet. Nowadays the number of Internet users is rapidly growing.
The foundations of the Internet were formed when packet-switching networks came into operation in the 1960s. Transmitted data is broken up into small packets of data, sent to its destination, and reassembled at the other side. This means that a single signal can be routed to multiple users, and an interrupted packet may be re-sent without loss of transmission. Packets can be compressed for speed and encrypted for security.
Early packet-switching networks were set up in Europe. Development of a similar system began in America in 1968, and went into operation the year after in the US Defence Department's Advanced Research Projects Agency (ARPA). The ARPANET used Network Control Protocol as its transmission protocol from 1969 to 1982, when NCP was replaced with the now-widespread TCP/IP.
Now that the technology was in place, strategies were put forth on what to do with it. Eventually, the first large-scale Internet was created — a set of interconnected US military computers. The idea was simple: if an attack was laid down on one part of the system, the rest of the system would still be operational enough.
Services like Email found their first usage through the ARPANET system, and its obvious benefits were lauded by all who participated. The popular bulletin-board system, Usenet, was developed between the 70s and 80s. Around this stage all of the main universities in the US were connected to the network and used it for transmitting experimental data and educational resources. It was found to be an excellent method of sharing information. In 1973 the first international (and indeed intercontinental) connection was made to the University College of London in England.
USENET contributed more than anything else to the way the Internet began to take off. The spirit of information sharing and discussion that is the hallmark of the net was encapsulated in this system. Usenet is considered to have begun in 1979, and went through a few revisions. In an early triumph for freedom of speech, the restrictions on taboo subjects like recreational drugs were circumvented by independent people setting up their own servers and hosting discussions there instead of on the main ARPANET servers, where this was forbidden. New transmission methods were developed, the standard becoming NNTP (Net News Transfer Protocol), which is still in use today.
The introduction of personal computers in the late 70s brought a large new audience to the developing Internet. They used email and participated in discussions on networks like Usenet, Bitnet and Fidonet, which eventually were all joined together. The Internet was growing exponentially. IRC (Internet Relay Chat) became available in 1988 and communities formed in chat rooms.
It was only in 1991 that what we now call the World-Wide Web was introduced, developed by Mr. Tim Berners-Lee, with assistance from Robert Caillau. Tim saw the need for a standard linked information system accessible across the range of different computers in use. It had to be simple so that it could work on both dumb terminals and high-end graphical X-Window platforms. He got some pages up and was able to access them with his 'browser'.
Today, in whatever year this is, the web is still growing at an amazing rate. Technology has improved considerably, and the web is regarded as an indispensable tool for education, business and entertainment. There are billions of pages on the web, with thousands more being added every hour. The Internet is a system that is nigh-on impossible to destroy, and looks set to become an ever-larger influence on the world in the future.…