We are proud to announce that Ponder is the recipient of a generous grant from An Chomhairle um Oideachas Gaeltachta & Gaelscolaíochta (COGG) to adapt Ponder for Gaeilge, the Irish language. The grant covers the costs of the language work and a professional development workshop to kick-off a pilot in schools across Ireland in preparation for broad availability in Irish-language classrooms and reading groups.
More than ten schools have registered their interest so far, and we will be running a day-long workshop in early December. Interested Gaelscoileanna and English-medium schools should contact us by selecting Webinar Request in this ticket form. We began running online webinars to provide additional background and answer questions and will be running more in the coming weeks.
More about Ponder
Ponder is a higher-order literacy tool, designed to support students in their critiquing and evaluating of texts and videos. It does this through a flexible and fun social media platform intertwined with the learning experience. There is an introductory video on our site, and a series of interviews with current Ponder teachers discussing teaching challenges and the ways they have implemented Ponder.
Ponder is already used across the US, and this year together with Anna Davitt (Hibernia College) and Fiona Nic Fhionnlaoich (NUIM-Froebel), we will be collaborating with teachers from Irish schools to develop a version of Ponder for Gaeilge.
Language teachers are familiar with the challenge of fully immersing students in a language. Reading casually in the language and chatting with friends are important parts of building and maintaining fluency. Outside of assigned homework, Ponder supports these activities by creating a pedagogically-sound social media environment for students to practice Gaeilge.
Adapting Ponder for a new language is both a linguistic and a cultural translation process and is always fascinating.
Beyond the opportunity to shape Ponder for Gaeilge, participating schools will receive:
- A free year-long site license of Ponder for all of their teachers and students
- A travel stipend for one teacher to attend a day-long workshop on using Ponder
- ICT Implementation support
The Ponder workshop will include:
- An overview of Ponder and common implementation strategies.
- Small group brainstorming of lesson ideas by subject area.
- 1:1 hands-on setup of classes, using materials teachers bring with them to the session.
- Small group live Ponder lesson amongst attendees.
- Growing and evolving the draft set of Gaeilge sentiments as a group.
Ponder for your favorite language
Behind the scenes here at Ponder, we have been slowly expanding our language coverage in collaboration with enthusiastic Ponder educators! Beyond the work on Gaeilge, we now support Español and عربي, and have a sentiment set in progress for Rwandan.
Adapting Ponder for a new language is both a linguistic and cultural translation process – you can’t create a slang-infused critical thinking scaffold without a lot of head-scratching and word play. One component is identifying and incorporating relevant idioms and proverbs to provide a more fluent and poetic discussion experience. It’s a collaboration with native-speaking educators, and requires classroom time to get the gather the feedback necessary to get the tone of individual sentiments correct as well as getting the distance between different sentiments correct.
If you’d like to work with us to create a sentiment set in another language, let us know!