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The we-Learn portal is an avenue to li nk tasks

together, i ncorporating video and audi o stimulus


wi th speaking, wri ting and readi ng assi gnments to
engage students in an interacti ve manner.
Teachers are able customi se onli ne templates to suit
their teachi ng purposes whil e students can receive
i mmediate feedback.
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After watchi ng an online vi deo about a teenage girl who overcame an eating disorder, students from Kranji Secondary
School were asked to write a letter to encourage a 'friend' in a si mi lar predicament.
As issues such as buli mi a and anorexi a are very real and relevant to teenagers
today, the students were keen to get down to work and draft thei r letters on we-
Learn, an onli ne learning portal provi ded by the Mini stry of Educati on.
ntroduced in 2010, the we-Learn portal allows teachers to use information
technology to engage Normal (Technical) students i n English language learni ng
and assessment. The portal is an avenue to link tasks together, incorporating
vi deo and audio stimulus with speaking, wri ti ng and reading assi gnments to
engage the students in an interacti ve manner.
Customi sing and Shari ng Online Resources to Benefit All
An added advantage of this online portal is that teachers are able to customi se
online templates to sui t thei r teachi ng purposes, whi le students can recei ve immediate feedback as the system i s able to
check students' inputs automati cally.
'The onli ne portal i s able to provide quick feedback, and allows students to make multiple attempts to re-visit the tasks. The
immedi acy and flexibili ty i s very helpful, especially for the Normal (Techni cal) students as it i ncreases engagement and
makes learning more dynamic as compared to pen and paper assi gnments,' sai d Miss Serene Lai, the Head-of-Department
of English Language i n Kranj i Secondary School.
The school has been i nvolved in the piloting of the onli ne portal since it was
introduced in 2010. Currently, there are 59 schools which are usi ng this portal
for teachi ng and learning purposes. Other online learni ng portals, such as EN[ a]
BLER, was also developed in 2011 for English Language teachers to develop
e-assi gnments for students i n the Express and Normal (Academic) courses.
Such portals create a virtual environment where teachers are able to benefit
from the sharing of online resources. More importantly, students look forward
to the lessons and enjoy learning because there i s immediate feedback.
Another feature which helps to make the portal more attracti ve i s the high-score
board, where scores are tabulated and helps to act as a moti vator for students
when they see improvements from their previous results.
English Lessons Made Fun
Page 1 of 2 Schoolbag.sg: Engaging Students through Online Learning Portals
5/11/2013 http://www.schoolbag.sg/archives/2013/10/engaging_students_through_onli.php
Sufiah Bte Su'eh (centre), a Secondary Three student
who has been usi ng the we-Learn portal si nce she
fi rst joi ned Kranj i Secondary School, enjoys Engl ish
lessons more than in the past.
learn better as we can do peer evaluation and di scuss how we can i mprove our
reading, wri ti ng and speaki ng skills,' said Sufiah.
As students get more engaged in learning, the quali ty of lessons i mproves as
well. ' t is a natural boost for teachers as they are then motivated to search for
relevant materi als to i mprove thei r teaching pedagogies. When teachers create
customised content on the portals, it can add to the onli ne resource bank and
other teachers can benefit as well,' sai d Miss Lai .
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2011 Mi nistry of Educati on, Si ngapore
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Page 2 of 2 Schoolbag.sg: Engaging Students through Online Learning Portals
5/11/2013 http://www.schoolbag.sg/archives/2013/10/engaging_students_through_onli.php