Jennifer Gagliardi: Hi, my name's Jennifer Gagliardi, I teach at Milpitas Adult School, and I would like to talk about some citizenship resources online. This was our year that we had planned out-- we had National Census Day, income tax was coming up, all sorts of things were going to happen politically. So I'm calling this timeline Before COVID-19.
Now this is cut timeline After COVID-19. In mid-March we got all our shelter-in-place orders. So our classes started migrating online, and a lot of people were not prepared. It was a real shock to the system. A lot of things have been delayed, including income tax, which is set in stone-- in fact, we think of it as it's a question on the for citizenship. Delayed is the pilot program for the USCIS 100 Questions. The pilot program was supposed to start in April, it's been delayed because USCIS is currently in their own shelter-in-place orders.
The Census follow-up has been delayed, and also, we're coming up against-- on the other hand, we're coming up against some really hard deadlines. We're having the California REAL ID is coming into play in October the 1st, we're having the presidential election on the 3rd, and the Census will be delivered December the 1st, which talks about apportionment-- and later on I am going to refer to apportionment.
I don't know how you felt when you saw this red banner across uscis.gov. I was absolutely sick to my stomach. They temporarily-- they initially closed-- excuse me, initially announced that they were going to close some local USCIS offices, but then the order came down that they're going to close all the public services because they wanted to protect their own workforce and they wanted to protect the people that they served. So USCIS me that very brave decision to shelter in place.
However, that left a lot of our students in a lurch because they were ready to go to their citizenship interviews and their oath ceremonies. So those have automatically been delayed, and we're waiting for letters to call us back for their appointments. USCIS has just posted a video maybe about two or three days ago about the benefits of filing online.
So USCIS is still doing case management, only they are doing it-- they're not doing it with the public, they're doing things in their own offices. They have some videos in Spanish and in English about how to create a USCIS online account, and they still have their very, very fine USCIS civics playlist, too. So even though the offices are shut to the public, USCIS is still on the job.
And one of the really great things to show that USCIS is still on the job is Gonzales Adult School was originally going to have one of the USCIS officers come into their classroom to do a presentation about becoming a US citizen. Well instead they're actually going to be broadcasting this on Facebook I believe it's tomorrow. So join them live, and then they will be locking that interview.
So if you can go to the Gonzales Adult School Facebook page, check out their services, how they're basically writing their citizenship program during this time and their adult education programs, that would be really great. So good job, Gonzales Adult School. I'm going to talk a little bit about my citizenship class. My students-- I created this website, uscitizenpod.com for my students maybe in 2007 with the podcast and some videos. Since then, I've been posting every day, and I have over 4,000 blog posts about preparing for citizenship or I have things related to civics.
But during this time, our last day that we taught in Milpitas, I believe, was-- let's see. I think it was March the 13th. So our classes meet for six hours a week, a three-hour session each time. So it would be Tuesday and Thursday nights. All the sudden we no longer had access to each other personally.
So what I try to do is post full-blown citizenship lessons on my website. And it's one thing to meet in class in person, it's a totally different experience of meeting-- going to an online website and trying to figure out what do I do next? So I've tried to be very specific online talking about do this, and then do that, and do that. However, there's still some confusion, so I've been basically posting videos that summarize what people should be doing or studying during that day.
So here is an example of a video, and I'm going to give a very short overview of what I do during the video. And I wanted to check, what's in the question and answer--
Melinda Holt: Yeah. One question, do you know how long oath ceremonies and interviews will be delayed? And I think you answered that, but if you could--
Jennifer Gagliardi: Well, OK. The offices are closed til May-- they're currently closed til May the 3rd. So they're supposed to open again May the 4th. However, Washington, DC and Virginia went into lockdown much later than California, so there's still no information yet about when those offices will be reopened. So that--
Melinda Holt: --would you would recommend-- would you recommend that people just watch the websites to find out or--
Jennifer Gagliardi: Absolutely.
Melinda Holt: --get the information-- OK.
Jennifer Gagliardi: Absolutely. Watch the websites, and anytime-- I constantly am checking that website myself. Whenever I see a alert like that, I immediately post something to my blog and also to my YouTube channel. I do want to see that USCIS is very, very good when it comes to an online social media presence. So use this opportunity to subscribe to their Twitter feed, also their Facebook page and Instagram page. But for my money, the Twitter feed is the best, and they have that in English and in Spanish. And they also send out summary-- sorry, summary email every day about what they posted. So that's another good way to stay on top of that kind of information.
Because if you're depending on somebody else for your news, you're that much further removed for your news. So doing direct contact to USCIS through social media is really going to be helpful. And it also gets people used to accessing the government as a direct resource. For example, people were spreading the news that-- a rumor that IRS was going to delay the taxes, but they had said it was going to be much later.
But when I went to check the IRS website, there was no news about that. And eventually it did come out and they had a-- the deadline was in July the 15th. So it's better to go and take a look directly at the government websites for that kind of critical information. At least confirm that that information is up there.
So when I am posting my videos and my resources, I'm using PDFs from my Mix-and-Match citizenship interviews, which are about 20 leveled interviews and 40 quizzes. I have the translation in Spanish, and I'm also getting information from Preparing the Oath Transcripts. Now Preparing the Oath is really great, because they have one video for each one of the 100 questions. However, they use it in Flash, and a lot of our students live and die by their cell phones, so they can't access the website on their cell phones.
So what I've been doing is going in and I took the transcripts and I made PDFs of the questions or the civic content of the day, and I was developing citizenship videos from that in material. So let's continue. So this is a video that I-- this is a typical lesson. I'm saying that we're going to take a look at a specific lesson, B5, and I do a direct link just to that page. I'm not doing it to the entire PDF up 64 pages, it's a direct link to that specific page.
There's the Spanish translation, there's this transcripts from si.edu from-- in English and in Spanish. I also do direct links to the USCIS lesson plans. And the USCIS lesson plans, I'm not referring to them in my videos right now. However, when I do a series of videos-- on the next series of videos I will be using that material.
I also have integration quizzes where I'm matching 10 questions from the N-400 and 10 questionss from the civic content, and I always have some extra credit. One of the examples of the extra credit is the videos from listen and read along. So they're taking DOA news content and they basically put up the transcript, and as the word is spoken, the word is highlighted. So it's really good to help reading and listening fluency.
So the American history series was originally published I think maybe in 2010 as part of a radio program. They've put this up-- and so the sound quality isn't that great on this. However, they've re posted this on VOA Learning English. Not these videos that highlight the words, but they've re posted them with better audio quality and with some really nice reading articles which you can basically use to create more level-appropriate content. So please take a look at this information here.
So here we are back in americanhistory.si.edu/citizenship. Again, they have one video for each one of the 100 questions. They put them together in themes. Up here I want to talk about a little bit more about the what they have available. They have lesson plans available for the teachers.
They have word lists-- so they basically have a word list not exactly of-- not only civic content, but also ESL content or supporting language content, and those kind of dictionaries or glossary is very helpful for the students, and they have the transcripts. So for every one of the civics videos, they have a transcript that will go along with it. So what I've been doing is taking the video-- the transcripts and slicing them up into smaller pieces for each one of the lessons.
Another thing that I want to point out to the teacher-- on the teacher is, they have-- very early in the page, they have something that talks about the list of links. So you cannot download these videos. However, they have a list of the direct links to the videos. Again, when the student accesses it through a video link, they're going to be asked if they can use-- or they can accept flash content.
So that is one-- so if you're on Canvas or using Google Classroom, you can pull out those direct links and put that-- embed that into your classroom or your learning management systems, and that's going to be really helpful.
Melinda Holt: Jennifer? I'm sorry, we have a quick question on the slide before that one-- actually, now two slides back.
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK. Let me go back. OK, please.
Melinda Holt: The one before-- right there. There we go. So someone is asking the website for this previous slide. So this is the one.
Jennifer Gagliardi: So this one is on uscitizenpod.com. I posted it on March the 27th. This one here, if you're talking about the video, which is a really cool video, this is on YouTube, and it's the-- the channel is called Listen and Read Along. Really good playlist about history. So take a look at their playlists and you'll be able to find the American history series.
Also, go ahead-- that's a link I should have posted. I'm sorry, I don't have it in my presentation, but I will add a little bit later. Voice of America has more modern editing of the content, and I will post that when I put this up on OTAN's website, OK? OK, so here's an example of the civics transcripts. I've tried to put short links with this.
The short links have been changing because I wanted to get something consistent, but for instance, when I had the English one, I said, OK, this is 10-US citizen, and this one's 10-Spanish citizen, I realized that was kind of like, hey, that's not appropriate. We want to focus on English language versus Spanish language, not US citizen versus-- we're both US citizens.
So I hope-- I did do the Spanish translation mostly through Google Translate and I'm able to read enough Spanish to see if it's appropriate or not. I would love to do the same thing in English-- or sorry, in Vietnamese and Chinese. However, I have not been-- the translation that comes out is not satisfactory according to my students. If somebody else would like to take that on and do it for Spanish and Chinese and Korean, I think that would be really wonderful.
Here's an example of some of the civics content. So we reviewed the civics content, now I'm using the text from the-- from Preparing the Oath. They have the questions always on the top. I have a picture and I have the content from the PDF, and then I always try to put my sources. Now when you're looking at the video on preparing the oath, they have some wonderful, wonderful graphics. There's movement-- this is kind of static, but this is the best that I can do. Hopefully my video skills will get a little bit better as I go on.
I always have something from the Citizenship Interview. So here's the example of one of the citizenship questions. So all week they've been reviewing the Citizenship Interview, they've been gaining more vocabulary. On Friday I deliver a quiz where they're being asked about information appropriate to the citizenship interview.
And initially, the first week, I didn't-- I wasn't giving people homework, I was assuming that they would be going through the website, and I go, hmm, I think I need to be more explicit in my instructions. So what I've been doing is trying to add more things-- more explicit instruction to my videos. So I've been saying, look, don't forget about your reading and writing. I do a summary of where people can access the resources. I always give them extra credit because I won't-- the best way to prepare for the interview is actually to speak English with another person.
So yes, I assume that they're practicing the citizenship interview, but I also want them to discuss more content. So for instance, who is the father or mother of your country? So looking at those kind of-- thinking about those kind of questions and doing a compare and contrast is going to be appropriate.
I summarized the videos-- extra credit videos that they could be looking at, and I also want to just show you this one series of VOA learning English. It's America's Presidents playlist. And so these videos are a one-minute summary of each one of the presidents. They go really fast, but they're really good at delivering content, and I'll show how I use those and a little bit.
Finally, I-- I don't know, maybe this is how I'm ending my videos. I take something random from my house that's appropriate or maybe I referred to during our presentations. I love to do puzzles, so I have a lot of civics puzzles, usually a cup of coffee. Something to share from my own home, because I'm in my own home making these videos, and some of the students say, hey, we really like this because we're getting a glimpse into people's lives.
You could also use something like this for a warm-up. So for instance, if you started your Zoom session, you may share a picture like this and you say, OK, well let's try to remember what the questions are. So for instance, this one's easy-- who was the first president? But then you see this one, this is Jefferson. Well what was the question about Jefferson? Who wrote the Declaration of Independence? You may talk about the 50 stars, all sorts of questions.
So I've had students-- when I've run my Zoom sessions, they annotated this, they've spoken their answer, all sorts of things. So you could basically use this as a summary or you can use it as a warm-up for you for your classes. And I like to drink coffee, so everybody has a coffee mug from Washington, DC.
And I always end my videos with stay home, stay healthy, stay strong, I know you will be a great American citizen. So giving them affirmation-- so acknowledging that we're all in this together and that we need to stay strong for each other I think is very appropriate. So I take those videos and I put them into a playlist, and I've done another-- so there's a series of 10 lessons right now. I also put in a video-- I originally made this for my ESL students about what's a activity you can do in your house?
You're not studying citizenship, but you're basically creating more content to remember what you're supposed to be learning. So here, I was talking about jigsaw puzzles, and there's a lot of free online jigsaw puzzles, and then I show off a couple ones that I've done, too. So making things fun and sharing things from people's personal experience is going to be really helpful.
I want to talk about more civics and ESL resources. Before I continue, are there any questions?
Melinda Holt: Yes, there is. How are your students responding to the DL-- the distance learning format in terms of attendance and interest?
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK, that's a really, really good question. We do try to have Zoom meetings on the times for our classes. However, my class started at 5:45-- people are eating at 5:45. So we've been meeting at 7 o'clock and usually meet for about an hour. However, the thing is is that what they find the most satisfying is personal phone calls or Zoom meetings or FaceTime meetings.
The reason why is that it's one thing to receive civics content in a group, but the whole point of citizenship is practicing your interview skills together. So they get a little bit of that when they-- when I do breakout rooms. However, invariably, somebody forgets their citizenship interview or what supposed to be talking about. So when I check in on them, they're not speaking English and they're not talking about citizenship.
So I really think that-- I know a lot of teachers are still doing the personal touch, but I wanted to show one group that is doing their entire class online. I know some students, especially in the-- San Diego has a really good series of citizenship classes. They're very practiced on using Canvas. So contacting the citizenship and ESL in their-- in the non-credit program of the San Diego Community Colleges would be really helpful, because they're really good at doing Canvas and citizenship there.
I know there is a Moodle course on the OTAN's website for citizenship. I think that is a little bit outdated, but it could be good. I personally like-- I've always done the delivering content by my daily blog, that's really good. And I'm not familiar with anybody who's doing it on Google Classroom. And I know that there's several teachers that do use Edmodo to deliver content. Is there another question?
Melinda Holt: Yes. What would you recommend for a class that used to meet Tuesday and Thursdays for two and a half hours weekly? All my students only have phone, low digital literacy skills.
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK.
Melinda Holt: And most do not have emails.
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK. I would initially contact them through-- if they have FaceTime, because doing things on the phone and doing-- nobody-- people rarely do-- well, I take that back. I know I've had job interviews on the phone. But people really need, especially low literacy, need facial clues to respond, and plus, people are glad to see you. OK, they really are.
So I will initially use FaceTime to contact my students, and I would ask them to commit to maybe a 10 to 15-minute session once a week, because you're going to get some real intensive work, and then they can-- you can give them practice outside of the classroom, but that one-on-one contact is going to be really appropriate. And that's been more helpful-- that's what my lower-level students have really appreciated. Now I'm going to show you another class that has been doing things on Facebook, and that's going to be really helpful, too.
Also, we try to WeChat with my Chinese students. They had a great time, but there was-- I couldn't understand really what was happening because there was too much back and forth in the original language. So we had to-- I had to be in a session where there was a little bit more control. Is there another question? Is that a satisfactory answer?
Melinda Holt: I think you got it. We do have a couple of suggestions from some folks, that their students use WhatsApp, and you can make video calls using that, too.
Jennifer Gagliardi: Whatsapp is very good, yes. OK. If you need to stay on track with ideas about civics content and especially if you're trying to deliver information to them daily or if you're trying to fill out a Canvas course, take a look at the civics calendar from the National Constitution Center. They basically talk about-- they celebrate the different amendments, and the big theme this year is women and the right to vote, so that's going to be very appropriate as we're coming up on the presidential election.
ESL Library is a wonderful system. They have a lot of lessons that you can share online with multiple-level students. One of the best or-- one of the best things that VOA, Voice of America News has done is that they have a special section about press freedom. So they basically take a look at what's going on in different countries, and even the United States-- so what's happening with press freedom, which is very appropriate, especially during the presidential elections and talking about various news sources.
VOA Learning English did a series on news literacy. So this is, again, a way to fill out your Canvas-- your Canvas courses and other-- or getting access to daily information for your students, because news literacy is critical, especially learning about health, what's appropriate to do and what's not appropriate to do, learning about what's happening with the presidential elections, et cetera.
We're still-- even though the Census-- April 1 has passed, there's still people who have not filled out the Census, and some people, I don't know what's happening with the-- what's happening with EL Civics, but the Division of Adult Career Education from Los Angeles still maintains really, really great resources about the Census, 2020 resources, and a lot of them take a look at government information. So taking a look at those and thinking about, how can I use this to teach my students more about the inner workings of the government is going to be really helpful. Plus, we got it-- now more than ever, we need to make sure that those-- or that we fill out the Census.
ICivics. So a lot of people are home, but they love to play games. So iCivics is a program from-- I think it was-- who's the first woman Supreme Court? Sandra Day O'Connor. Basically they've developed a whole series of civics courses-- or civics games teaching people about voting rights or news literacy or getting access to legal counsel. It's very, very helpful.
Now, this is going to be more appropriate for your higher-level students. However, sometimes I get my higher-level students to play these games, and then they come back and report to the students what they did-- what they learned during the games. So they make their own little presentation and say, look, I learned this and that and the other thing. So taking a look at icivics.org, and especially taking a look at their blogs because they developed games and they have activities according to different monthly things.
So speaking of news resources, Newsela has basically announced that a lot of their free-- their content is free. There was a debate between my co-workers whether or not you can create classes on Newsela, but again, this is a good way to get our students to learn how to access good critical content for-- that they need.
Elizabeth Claire has also basically released free-- there are issues free on the internet, so please take a look at Elizabeth Clare Easy English. Change Agent from the New England Literacy Resource Center is really great, and New Readers Press, again, has some really great content.
We want to go back to Elizabeth Claire. She's reading her feature stories and putting them on YouTube-- on her YouTube channel. So that's a really good way to get the students to dig a little bit deeper into the news and learn more information about what's going on in-- that's related to civics.
I know this is not specifically citizenship stuff. However, We Speak NYC is a great series that came out in 2009 and then was re-upped in 2018, and it's focused in on low literacy students. And they go through different ways to learn about money, to learn about online life, to learn about workers rights. So they have a lot of great supporting PDFs. So taking a look at these resources, and they're high interest stories, and they're really, really great. So again, this is another way to basically pursue appropriate content that's tangential to citizenship resources.
Of course, we have USA Learns, and you can put your classes on here, you can create classes. You need to go to the teacher link down here, and you have the citizenship content up here. The class is divided into four sections. There's one about legal resources, there's the part about the N-400, there's a section in there about the civics questions, and then there's another section in there about-- let me see, about what happens after the interview.
One problem with USA Learns Citizenship, there is so much content, the students can really get weighed down. So you really need to keep on top of them, especially at the very beginning of the course, because there's a lot of legal content on there, and they're just like, hey, I just want to learn about the N-400 or I want to learn about civics.
So making sure that they get over that hump and into the more interesting speaking and listening sections where they're talking about, oh, just have a little bit of a rest, OK? Not too much of a rest, or I had a very interesting love life, OK? And the complications that comes from filling out your N-400 application from that, making sure that they continue on and get through that is really important.
I see that there's two questions.
Melinda Holt: There are, yes. Let's start with USA Learns one first. Do you know how long the USA Learns citizenship course takes?
Jennifer Gagliardi: I would say at the very-- at the lowest end, 30 hours; at the highest end, 60 hours. So it could be very appropriate for somebody who needs to do distance learning. However, you do have speaking practice in there, so that's really, really good. And you have listening practice and you could go back and review some information.
However, I still think that you need to make sure that you're checking in with the teacher at least once a week and practice what they should be-- what they should they just learned. So basically setting a goal, like you need to get through this amount of work, you need to do these assignments, and then creating your own oral check with your students. So maybe you're talking to them 10 or 15 minutes a week. Make sure you basically touch on some of the stuff that they learned. I think that would be the best way to learn USA Learns.
So just throwing anybody on the computer is a recipe for disaster, OK? It's much better to basically make sure that they have some teacher supervision, and basically that they know that there's other students doing this as well. So if they have a question, they don't always have to contact the teacher. Maybe they can contact one of their friends and practice some of that information on there. And getting the students to report back on that would be really good.
I believe then Gonzales Adult School is using this, and perhaps you can connect with the teachers to talk to them about that later. Is there another question?
Melinda Holt: Do you use Remind? Does anybody use Remind for low level--
Jennifer Gagliardi: Yeah. I initially used Remind for my low level students, and they were not responding to the messages unless I translated them. And a lot of them miss them simply because they didn't know that they were supposed to be-- they were supposed to basically opt in.
So if you're in a classroom and you teach everybody how to get on to Remind when they're in the classroom, that's the best way. Trying to get them on Remind outside the classroom is really, really difficult. The best way is-- I've used WhatsApp or Facebook, and that's because they're already on there. So going to where your students already are is really the best way to get that stuff happening.
Melinda Holt: And there's a comment-- I'm going to address this. It looks like teachers can keep track of the amount of our students spend in this program if teachers create a classroom in the USA Learns and then they invite their students. Yes they can to an extent, and we're going to be doing a USA Learns webinar in the future. So look for that on the OTAN website and you'll get more information there.
Jennifer, which online resource is best for students to practice Part 12 questions from the N-400 citizenship application?
Jennifer Gagliardi: I would say USA Learns, but I have a lot of content myself on Part 12 stuff, too. So yeah.
Melinda Holt: And we also have requests about-- I'm going to save this to the end. If we have time, Jennifer can address how she uses Facebook, but let's let her continue with the presentation.
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK, I'm going to--
Melinda Holt: --come back to that.
Jennifer Gagliardi: I'm going to go back to Part 12, OK?
Melinda Holt: OK. Sure.
Jennifer Gagliardi: So as with the Mix-and-Match citizenship interviews, as I continue through the series, I basically stop asking so many personal questions and start asking more Part 12 questions about the vocabulary. That series is going to be finished probably next week. So the week after that, I'm going to be going through my 30-- so I have an N-400 PDF, and it's basically cut that into 30 different pieces.
So predominantly my focus is on the Part 12 stuff. So I take like almost every one of the Part 12 questions and I associate it with some sort of graphic, and then I have a definition of that. That's probably going to be the very best practice that I've seen. I've seen some really, really super great practice on Quizlet. That is probably the best way to practice Part 12-specific information. And then quiz Q-U-I-- Quizziz? Q-U-I-Z-Z-I-Z, or something like that. Those are, again, really good, but again, coming up with the different scenarios-- and I think that's what USA Learns is really good-- that enables people to practice that information.
And I think as adult education teachers, we have to think about ourselves, how can we come up with different scenarios or stories-- because our students love stories-- about how to employ some of that Part 12 information would be really helpful. So anyway, I'm going to continue. And I'm going to talk a little bit about using videos. So here's a really-- this is BPSOS from Westminster, and they're basically doing all their classes on Facebook or-- yeah, mostly seen them on Facebook.
They're recording them-- and so you can do it through Facebook Live, and then they're posting them to their website. So this website-- so their-- this YouTube channel, excuse me. This YouTube channel is about two or three weeks old, OK? So this is very fresh content, and what's really helpful is that there is a teacher there who basically when she teaches, she teaches-- she says things in English and then she'll say them again in Vietnamese.
You have-- so you have some really good teachers there who are sharing their information and some of their citizenship resources. So taking a look and talking to them about how they're doing their classes on Facebook and on Zoom, and then basically posting their classes is going to be really, really helpful. Please go ahead and take a look at their YouTube channel, and then also their channel on Facebook.
One of the things that I really like to use, VOA, VOA News videos to talk about different aspects of civics. Here's information about a woman who is basically joined the military so she can basically become a US citizen. So what I basically did, initially in 2018, I would take a video like this, I would embed it in my blog, and then I would also be asking a couple citizenship questions, so something very, very basic. But you can do better.
You can take short videos. So for instance, I took a whole bunch of videos from the Census and I embedded them in Google Forms. I also found a really good-- so when you embed them in Google Forms, they play for about 30 seconds or one minute, however long you would like, and then the student could basically respond and you get the results.
I found another interesting citizenship site that I'm going to be interested in taking videos from them. It's called George Washington's Mount Vernon, and he has some-- they have longer lectures there from some of their professors, but they also have very short minute videos about different aspects of George Washington's life. So I thought, hey, those would be really great for the students to simply watch those for about a minute and answer some questions. So starting-- I'm starting to look around for those kind of mini-videos that could be really-- help illustrate what's happening with citizenship.
I also have used Edpuzzle. And so I took the series from VOA Learning English Presidents, and basically the video will stop-- or it will play and then stop at the appropriate place and prompt the student for a citizenship question. However, in this minute video, I asked about 10 questions, and that is really inappropriate. So it's kind of like, you just said a sentence and now I have to answer the question.
So what would be more helpful, if you have a very, very short video, about a minute, maybe ask like two or three questions at the max. But this is helpful, again, because the students-- you're checking for understanding with the student, and this is helpful. You can also use this with Peak Deck and Nearpod, and all these have really great professional development websites that you can learn more about their apps. So you can take content that you already have, whether it's videos or PowerPoints, and you can import it into these apps to basically create something more interactive and to use it for assessments.
Melinda Holt: There's a couple of questions, yeah, and we're going to save the Facebook for later. Is family involvement good while you are teaching? How do you include or exclude family involvement while you are teaching online? Distractions, kids help or help too much?
Jennifer Gagliardi: Well, a lot of-- so one of the ways-- it's always good to use sugar instead of a stick, and one of the things is that I acknowledge the kids that pop their heads into the face. And sometimes they actually are-- they sit down and they'll sit with their parents during that. Another way is-- that's one of the reasons why I posted the video of doing puzzles together, because puzzles are a really good family activity. I'm going to be posting more videos about family-friendly activities related to citizenship.
So I would say that kids are welcome, because a lot of people are doing citizenship so they can provide for a more secure future for their family. A lot of people came here so they can get a better opportunity for their family, so it's really super important to acknowledge the kids. Oh, I forgot. One very, very important app that I did not put in this presentation, it's called getepic-- G-E-T-E-P-I-C .com, what it is an online digital library for kids.
So you can create playlists or basically reading lists about-- for different levels on different civics or citizenship topics. So there are online kids books about going to an oath ceremony, there are online kids books about geography, there are online kids books about the presidents. So creating those kind of reading lists and then sharing them with your adults so the kids could be something similar to what the parents are learning about is going to be really, really super helpful. So again, I can't recommend getepic.com enough. It's that helpful.
Melinda Holt: Yes. For those taking Spanish-only interview, what can instructors give to students to practice their N-400 apart from the paper?
Jennifer Gagliardi: So there is-- so I do have the Mix-and-Match citizenship interview. That is in Spanish. I do have a copy of a translation of the N-400 in Spanish, and I was talking about the 30 interviews based on the N-400, those are currently being translated into Spanish now, and I hope to have those really soon.
So if the person could leave their name so they could get a preview of those interviews, that would be really helpful so I can get some feedback on if the Spanish is good or not. Because during the-- especially the N-400 part, there's going to be information in there about N-400 vocabulary for the Past 12 section. I want to know if those are appropriate translations of my definitions. So if that person could-- if people are interested in the Spanish section, I would really appreciate that kind of feedback.
Melinda Holt: We got her.
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK, great. Anybody-- and what's the next question?
Melinda Holt: Well, it's asking you to talk more about how you use Facebook. And if you want to table this until the end, it's up to you.
Jennifer Gagliardi: I personally don't use Facebook. I use FaceTime or I chat with my students on Facebook because they already have Facebook. I have not conducted classes on Facebook. The people who do conduct classes on Facebook are BPSOS Westminster, and I know that Gonzales Adult School has a presence on Facebook-- they're not doing their class on there, but they're probably one of the better schools that really has leveraged Facebook to get information out to their students. I know there's a couple schools back east who also are doing the same thing.
If the person could say what kind of context of what they were thinking about doing with Facebook, that would be helpful. And what other questions are there?
Melinda Holt: Actually, some comments. We have Gayle Hall who said she had a student-- not lower level-- who decided to have her interview in Spanish, although that wasn't necessary. She didn't pass the 100 questions because we had practiced them in English. She had her second interview in English and passed with flying colors.
Jennifer Gagliardi: That's really interesting, thank you for sharing that. So this is an old video about how will we use Census information to assign representation to different states. I cannot think of a drier, more geeky subject, OK? And if you-- even saying this, even saying that sentence-- I wanted to go to sleep.
However, what can you do to get this information out? I would say create a transcript and then do a Cloze exercise. So I'm going to talk about how you can create a transcript. What do you do? This is the video. Down here there's the three little dots-- dot-dot-dot, it's basically steps towards getting more information. You do a right-click, you open the transcript. And so here, you're seeing the transcript. You can-- you see that dot-dot-dot up here, the snow man, you can toggle it and get rid of all the timestamps.
Now you simply basically copy-- so you just scroll down and you highlight it and you copy it and you put it into a Word or a Note file or whatever the case may be, and you can basically fix the transcript the way it should be. You can make sure that the transcripts you're getting is English or there's the automatic English version. The English version has been cleaned up so there's the periods in the right places. If you have the automatic captions, they're not going to have all the punctuation in there.
It's been really interesting that I used to give that to my higher-level students and they would basically test the grammar by cleaning up the information, but this is a way to take snippets of probably the more difficult parts of some of these very important videos and basically allowing them to have a transcript-- perhaps even translating the transcript via Google Translate or whatever the case may be, you can turn it into listening lessons, you can turn it into basically Google Forms.
So learning how to get that transcript, getting that information, and basically using and manipulating that information for our students to make it more level-appropriate is really going to help that level playing field that will eventually guarantee success for our students. I can share some more resources online, but does anybody else have any questions?
Melinda Holt: You have tools that target the N-400 interview questions such as focus on the vocabulary. Also, how do you practice with students in the event the interviewer asks a student what a term means following a response to a previous question?
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK. So a lot of times I address that on some of my YouTube videos. So if you go to take a look at some of the YouTube videos that I have. So one of the things that I've been finding is that some people have been sharing-- what do I want to say? Content-- so they're showing their textbooks, and I don't know if that's appropriate or not, because a lot of that-- let see, go to Share Screen now. Because a lot of that is copyrighted. So that could pose some problems for people.
And this is my website. And let me bring it down a little bit. Do you see the website that I'm-- do you see my website?
Melinda Holt: Yes.
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK, great. So this is, again, the Mix-and-Match citizenship interviews. And so when you click this one, this is the-- a whole bunch of interviews that I put together that are basically leveling up. So especially down here, there's going to be more practice for the Part 12, and as you continue along in this series of interviews, you're going to get further information about practicing the Part 12 information, and again, probably if you want to see some flashcards about that, take a look at what's going on-- or do a search for them on Quizlet.
This one was when I was talking about the 30 interviews, and this is being translated into Spanish right now. So here, we're going on to maybe talking about acts of violence. So we have pictures, but then we have the definitions about this. So some people have created videos about this, but if this can be also printed out or shared, interview by interview-- excuse me-- page by page. So today we're going to have a practice Question 14, and tomorrow we're going to practice Question 15, and then we're going to go on to the whole section of the prison and detention center.
So I know it's a lot to put up the entire PDF at once. So what I've done, if you go to the N-400 PDFs, here, you're going to have a whole bunch of different levels of PDFs, and on the bottom, here, we have the 30 section practice interviews, and you can basically click on the individual ones and share them with your students. So these are the interviews that are being translated right now.
Melinda Holt: We have a question, Jennifer. If we post one of your videos of a practice interview in the Google Classroom or on a Google site, is that OK? And--
Jennifer Gagliardi: What you need to do is simply get the link. Do you want me to show you how to--
Melinda Holt: No, no, no, no, no. She knows how to do that, she's just asking you if it's OK. If she gives you credit-- this was created by Jennifer from Milpitas, is that OK? Can she use the video on her site or her classroom?
Jennifer Gagliardi: I don't see what the problem is, but--
Melinda Holt: She's asking for permission.
Jennifer Gagliardi: Is she asking for permission?
Melinda Holt: Say yes or no.
Jennifer Gagliardi: The reason-- the reason why-- OK, I'm going to say yes, OK? Because--
Melinda Holt: OK.
Jennifer Gagliardi: --extraordinary times, OK? The only thing is is that if you basically download it and then upload it to your site instead of using the link, I don't get credit for that. So when you embed the link into your Google Classroom, I get credit for it, OK?
Melinda Holt: So use the embed code.
Jennifer Gagliardi: It's better to use the embed code or use the link. However, right now it's much more important because there's security issues and people are still working out the whole online activity-- or the whole online sharing of resources. That's more important to me personally right now than me getting credit from YouTube.
The only problem is that I know that people are also sharing the videos for sale in China and Vietnam, and that I don't like. So I'm glad people are making money, but I think it's an inappropriate-- it's theft of material.
Melinda Holt: Exactly. So just to reiterate, if they go to your site and use your site, no problem, because you're going to be getting the credit that way or the loot kits is what we're looking for. Or if they hit the embed code-- if they get the embed code from the video, that rocks, that's good, too.
Jennifer Gagliardi: No problem. However, I acknowledge that there are some people that have so much security on the different school districts, and sometimes they have to download that video and upload it to their Google-- to their own Google site, I acknowledge that, and like I said, it's extraordinary times. So--
Melinda Holt: If that is the case-- I'm just going to jump in here real quick. If that is the case, they can email OTAN, firstname.lastname@example.org, ask for the Google person, and we have a workaround on that. So contact us and we can help you out. Jennifer, is your website a Google site?
Jennifer Gagliardi: Yes, it's-- actually, it's Blogger, which was purchased by Google.
Melinda Holt: OK. Only students taking the English civics test get asked vocab questions? Question mark.
Jennifer Gagliardi: No, I don't think so. I mean, I've known my Spanish students who have asked-- been asked, define something in Spanish. So I don't see how they could possibly not ask that. But then again, people-- they don't-- it's not a vocabulary test, it's an interview. They're only asking the questions to make sure that the person understands what they're agreeing to legally, OK?
So maybe they'll get one or two questions just so the interviewer can be assured that the person knows what they're agreeing to, because this is a legal-- they're undertaking legal obligations here. So don't frighten them about the vocabulary, simply prepare them.
Melinda Holt: And I'm interested in some kind of glossary of terms-- Spanish-- for instructions on how to explain online learning to students to get them started with Zoom, Google Classroom, et cetera.
Jennifer Gagliardi: I would love that! I'm sorry--
Melinda Holt: So it looks like you're interested in it too. [laughs]
Jennifer Gagliardi: Yeah.
Melinda Holt: OK.
Jennifer Gagliardi: I've been interested to see-- I mean, how effective have people-- so my default is basically I run things through Google Translate and then I check the translation, but I'm not a native speaker. Have people been able to do that with some online instruction and has it been successful? Have people been able to do that with Vietnamese? And Brandon, I open that question to you.
Melinda Holt: I've posted your website, Jennifer. It's https://uscitizenpod.com.
Jennifer Gagliardi: OK. And when I shared this-- when I shared the slides for this, I'm going to add Get Epic and the further information from VOA Learning English about the updated history content.