Subject Area: Latin 101
Grade: College Freshman
Trainee Audience: Distance Learning Freshman Students attending Erudite University (EU)
Topic: An Immersive Virtual Latin Language Experience
Week 6: Trajan - A Latin Language Virtual Vignette
Rationale for Lesson
For learning foreign languages, many believe that immersive environments are more effective than traditional brick and mortar, or online, learning environments. Subsequently, many students travel to enhance their foreign language learning opportunities. Obviously, this is not an option for Latin language students. To mitigate this problem, this course is presented in a 3D virtual environment to provide Latin language students with a virtual immersive learning experience.
Furthermore, this lesson enhances students’ opportunities to hone their Latin language skills by presenting the material in the context of the culturally and historically significant reign of the Roman emperor Trajan. Trajan was one of five consecutive Roman rulers who ruled during the
Co-Creation and Role-Play
§ Co-Creation allows students to benefit from a social networking activity. This exercise will reinforce learning by providing students with opportunities:
§ Role-Playing in the Second Life 3D synchronous environment is less intimidating, for many students, than face-to-face role playing. In addition, when students’ avatars don togas and interact in a virtual environment reminiscent of ancient
The student will:
§ Accurately translate at least 25 phrases from English to Latin text in a collaborative creative storyboard activity
§ Demonstrate appropriate use of Latin phrases in a historic and cultural context in a collaborative production of a short vignette
§ Accurately pronounce at least five Latin phrases in his or her group’s machinima
§ Accurately answer questions about relevant historic and cultural contexts
§ Express relevant opinions about the historic, cultural, and language aspects of the exercises on the class blog
§ Contribute his or her opinions about the historic, cultural, or language aspects of the exercises to the class discussions
1. Transport to the Roma amphitheater class site where they receive a brief introduction that includes:
§ A brief whiteboard presentation about the emperor Trajan 52-117 C.E.
§ An instructor- led discussion about the Roman culture and history during this era
2. Organize themselves in to four groups of five students (at least one student in each group should have video editing capabilities)
3. Receive welcoming note cards with assignment details that include:
§ Lesson objectives (see learning objectives)
§ Basic concepts for several vignettes, each designed to promote recall of Latin phrases and to reinforce the Trajan presentation
§ Assigned workshop locations for each group - to avoid voice chat confusion
4. Disperse to explore the Roma site to discover potential locations for the assignment.
5. Complete the assignment by collaboratively:
§ Selecting one of the vignettes
§ Write a five scene script for machinima using at least 25 distinct Latin phrases (from a list of 100 phrases from 3 previous class lessons)
i. First, in English
ii. Second, in Latin
iii. Each scene must have at least five distinct Latin phrases
§ Use interactive whiteboards to create storyboards for each scene, which include:
i. A background image of the Roma location
ii. A text-based English-Latin translation
§ Producing machinima of the vignette including:
ii. Latin translation version of the script
iii. Relevant settings in the Roma environment
iv. Each scene should be at least 45 seconds in duration, but should not exceed one minute.
v. The total project should be no longer than 5 minutes
vi. Credits, which identify the actors and the director - camera operator (each member will direct, operate the camera, and capture the video for one scene)
While in Second Life each student will complete a five-question multiple choice quiz. Students may access the quiz by “touching” the golden obelisk in the Roma classroom in Second Life. Results will automatically be transferred to the Sloodle learning management system
§ (Q) Why was Trajan so popular? (A) He released unjustly imprisoned individuals and returned confiscated private property
§ (Q) During Trajan’s reign, did the territory controlled by the
§ (Q) Historically, Trajan is best known as a: (A) military commander
Each student will:
§ View the other three group machinimas
§ Post a short reflection on the class blog about his or machinima creation experience
§ Post his or her interpretation of at least one of the other machinimas
Each group will:
§ Provide the instructor’s avatar with a copy of the whiteboard/storyboard assignment
§ Post the machinima assignment, as directed, on http://youtube.com
§ Post the time of their scheduled Roma visit on the Google class calendar. Due to server limitations only one group may access the Roma site at one time.
The class will, during the next class meeting:
§ Watch all four machinimas
§ Discuss the machinimas
As specified in the rubric in the course syllabus, the evaluation for this lesson includes:
§ The group whiteboard/storyboard assignment
§ The group machinima - overall
§ Individual student’s pronunciation and grammar of Latin in the machinima
§ Individual student contributions to the class blog
§ Individual student contributions to class discussions
§ Quiz results automatically recorded in the Sloodle learning management system
After working in Second Life for several weeks, the students will be familiar with the Second Life interface. However, due to sporadic technical limitations, the instructor will:
§ Record the class session as a machinima and post the machinima on http://youtube.com and will also distribute the file to each student via email
§ Have a Graduate Assistant available to present the whiteboard presentation, lead the class discussion, explain the assignments, and answer questions
Second Life servers are equipped to handle a finite number of avatars simultaneously in each location. Therefore, Roma has agreed to reserve 30 minutes each week for EU Latin 101 class meetings. However, the groups may only access the facility one at a time according to the schedule which is posted in the Google class calendar.
Students who do not complete the assignments during class time may access the school computer lab or work at home. All components must be completed by the following week before class.
Students who have questions or need assistance may contact the instructor in person during class, and during scheduled office hours, or by phone, or email.
Group projects often create conflict. Typically, groups will resolve disagreements internally. Nonetheless, the instructor will intervene, if the problem is escalating, persistent, or if the root problem violates school policy.
Since this will be most students’ first attempt at creating a machinima, related technical problems and questions are anticipated.
Screen Captures of Lesson Environment
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