What is MailVU ? MailVU is a tool which you can swap from sending people a boring plain email into an interesting video email. You can record yourself talking up to 10 minutes and send it to your friends. It is a simple and easy website, with a couple of clicks - click allow website to use webcam, record youself and click send - you can send a video email to everyone and they can reply with their own video email too! You can never imagine the excitement of sending and receiving MailVU until you try it yourself!
How MailVU can benefit English learners?
- Learners can use the tool to send video email to their friends and family instead of writing an email. This way they can practice to use English in speaking and it is a good way to express themselves. They can always record and re-record the video message until they are satisfied with the speaking. At the same time, they can listen to their own speaking, making sure they are using the correct language and they can improve themselves if there is any mistakes such as wrong pronunciation.
- This is a great tool to be used as a connected classroom. Connected classroom is when an activity that has been done in the classroom is extended and the interactive activity is done outside the classroom as well. Let say, in the classroom teacher discusses with the learners on how would they spend their Christmas and winter holiday. As a homework, teacher might ask the learners to produce their own MailVU message and talk about the topic for a maximum of ten minutes. This way, learners can practice to speak in English not only in the classroom but also at home. What teacher can do is, listen to their recordings, make some notes on their use of English and send them a reply video to give them any comments or feedbacks.
- It is a good opportunity for the learners to improve their speaking skills. It is useful for learners who are afraid to speak in front of other people. They can practice speaking by themselves without having any interference such as other people which might discourage them.
- The examples of speaking activities that teacher can suggest the learners to do are interview (where learners can do the interview in pairs), advertising or promoting a product (practice speaking to get a market for a product), telling a story about themselves or people that they admire (personalisation) and even a mini cooking show!
The advantages of MailVU:
- It is free so you can record, re-record and send as many video emails as you like. You don't need to register to be able to use the tool.
- It is fast, simple and easy to use. Even younger learners can use it easily.
- It encourages learners to do speaking outside the classroom.
- A new way to learn English despite of the traditional classroom language learning.
- The video messages can be sent via email and you can play them on smart phones!
The disadvantages of MailVU:
- There is no such embedded code so you can only share your videos through email and view them online.
- It is not suitable to be used in the classroom as the recording process might get interrupted by interference such as background noise, time constraint and of course we need enough computers for all the students.