Character Development Using Voki Speaking Avatars

Recently, I participated in the I Heart EdTech Blog Swap from SimpleK12.com. This post about using Voki speaking avatars was originally posted in Kelli Erwin’s blog, which is full of great educational technology reviews!

Voki is an application that lets you create personalized avatars to use on your wikis, blogs or websites. You can also e-mail these wonderful characters. This free web 2.0 tool is a great way to motivate learners of any age, because they are very interactive and provide various options for students to customize them.

One of the best ways I like to use Voki avatars is to have students develop characters for digital storytelling projects. Have students create a Voki character as the main character in their digital stories! This is especially helpful with young learners who love reading and telling stories. If you take your students to a computer lab, let your students begin creating the avatars and walk around and ask the following questions about their characters. Feel free to develop your own questions. These questions are just to get you started and get you familiar with the various Voki options.

Character Development Chart

Here is what one of my students did with his Voki character. My student is from Germany and only 5 years-old. English is not his first language. The Voki next to his is a six year-old student from Turkey! My friend Ozge Karaoglu and I did a collaborative project sharing characters!

You can also use Voki’s with older students. I teach English to adults and they love the conversations my Voki characters have like the one below to teach idioms.

To see more Voki characters by children and to find out more ways to successfully integrate web 2.0 tools with young learners, visit the wiki created by Ozge and me, http://technology4kids.pbworks.com. You will find great ways to do international collaborative projects as well!

**Note: Please remember to get written permission from parents before using any web 2.0 tools and to set-up the account under your name.

Challenge:

Use Voki with your students to help them develop their characters in an upcoming story!

If you want to learn more effective ways to integrate technology with your students, you may want to subscribe for FREE to receive regular updates! You can subscribe by e-mail as well!

How can you use Voki’s with your students?


Shelly Terrell

Shelly Sanchez Terrell (@ShellTerrell) is an award winning digital innovator, an international speaker/consultant, and the author of Hacking Digital Learning with EdTech Missions, The 30 Goals Challenge for Teachers, and Learning to Go. She has trained teachers and taught English language learners in over 20 countries as an invited guest expert by organizations, like the US Embassy, UNESCO Bangkok, Cultura Inglesa of Brazil, the British Council in Tel Aviv, IATEFL Slovenia, HUPE Croatia, ISTEK Turkey, and Venezuela TESOL. She has been recognized by several organizations and publications as a leader in the movement of teacher driven professional development as the founder and organizer of various online conferences, Twitter chats, and Massive Open Online Courses (MOOCs). Two of the projects she co-organized were shortlisted for ELTons, #ELTChat and the Virtual Round Table Language and Technology online conference. She was named Woman of the Year by the National Association of Professional Women, awarded a Bammy Award as a founder of #Edchat, and named as one of the 10 Most Influential People in EdTech by Tech & Learning. Her greatest joy is being the mother of baby Savannah and Rosco the pug. Shelly has an Honors BA in English with a Minor in Communication and a specialization in Electronic Media from UTSA, a Masters in Curriculum Instruction ESL from the University of Phoenix, and a CELTA from CELT Athens. She regularly shares her tips for effective technology integration via Twitter (@ShellTerrell), Facebook.com/ShellyTerrell, and on her blog, TeacherRebootCamp.com, which has won several awards and recognitions as one of the top ESL, Edtech and Elearning blogs. Find over 400 of her slide presentations at https://www.slideshare.net/ShellTerrell/presentations

17 comments

  1. Shell, these are really cool! It’s a great way of students to learn language but also to have an avatar instead of having a photo online.

  2. This is such a cool idea. I will have to make a note of this and find a way to use it next year with my Freshmen. Great work!

  3. I love this idea to engage students visually and auditorially as well as with the written word. I have used voki and blabberize in my classroom as a presentation tool for students who are reluctant to share with the class in person. Thanks for an additional authentic way to utilize the site!

  4. This looks great for second language learning. I have only briefly looked at voki before, but your post has inspired me to give it a go with my Hebrew students. Any engaging way to practise using language is worthwhile! Thanks.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *