Today's #ThrowbackThursday brings us to a post I wrote when I was frustrated with a project I was working on with a vendor that didn't understand the value of free translation tools. Instead they were trying to figure out how to translate everything via a human translator making the project an impossible undertaking in terms of man power and money. Fast forward several years and many of these tools, such as Google Translate, have become common place. I also touched on some less commonly known tools like Odiogo which makes text talk.
Written: November 9, 2008
Topic: Translation Tools
Who might be interested: Educators who work with students and parent for whom English is not their first language.
Favorite excerpt: The internet has changed the rules and really has made information accessible in ways never before possible. So even if a site or vendor you are working with has not incorporated these tools, you do not have to wait. These are all available, FREE, TODAY for all innovative educators interested in enhancing student achievement for ELLs, foreign language students and those reading below grade level.
Reader question: What resources are you using to support English Language Learners?
I'm currently deploying a large-scale online program which is internet-based and in English. The problem in New York City is we have students who speak over 100 languages for whom this tool is barely accessible since they are not proficient in the language. So now we're discussing potentially making the site English/Spanish with possibly additional languages to come down the road. This decision will take a significant amount resources including funding and human manpower providing a perfect translation by hand...in one language and, of course this person will have to be brought in any time there is a site change or update, which in the ever-changing 21st Century means often.
Lisa Nielsen writes for and speaks to audiences across the globe about learning innovatively and is frequently covered by local and national media for her views on “Passion (not data) Driven Learning,” "Thinking Outside the Ban" to harness the power of technology for learning, and using the power of social media to provide a voice to educators and students. Ms. Nielsen has worked for more than a decade in various capacities to support learning in real and innovative ways that will prepare students for success. In addition to her award-winning blog, The Innovative Educator, Ms. Nielsen’s writing is featured in places such as Huffington Post, Tech & Learning, ISTE Connects, ASCD Wholechild, MindShift, Leading & Learning, The Unplugged Mom, and is the author the book Teaching Generation Text.
Disclaimer: The information shared here is strictly that of the author and does not reflect the opinions or endorsement of her employer.