Saturday, November 21, 2009

A Wonderful Week in Istanbul

We just finished a wonderful four days at Enka Schools in Istanbul, working with 4th & 5th grade teachers on ePortfolios, and a few of their students developing digital stories... in English, their second language! They were wonderful, very short stories about themselves or their best friends, and their enthusiasm was energizing. They have new skills to enrich their ePortfolios, now in Powerpoint, but soon they will explore more interactive tools, on their own WordPress server.

It was an interesting experience having all of my presentations translated... forcing me to slow down, reduce my content to the most critical elements. An interesting insight: There is no word for REFLECTION in Turkish, so they had to use a version of "thinking about your thinking/learning."

On Saturday, we had a tour of the historical center of Istabul. Now we are getting ready to leave for Spain. More later... with photos!


Mohsen said...

Hi Helen,
Thanks again for all your efforts and scientific endeavors for promoting the "e-portfolio " development. You are travelling so much for your mission! great.
I would like to mention that the term "reflection" is something that we may have not such an equvalent for that in Persian/Farsi as well. In a general sense we have translation for it for instance in science but in education sphere it is a bit difficult to coin a term for that. " reflective thinking" "reflective practitioner" and such are my concerns when I am reffering to them in my language.
Also, this is very relevant for "portfolio" itself! I am doing my doctoral dissertation on e-portfolios of course in English but when I want to talk about it I can't find a good term for that which represent "portfolio" concept then in many cases we use the term itself without translation which might be understood by academicians but might not well by teachers and students. For translation in some books and resources it is used " collection of works" which I am not sure a good term for that!
But anyway, this is a problem all the time with us finding relevant scientific equvalents for scientific terms in my language.

Helen Barrett said...

Thanks for your comment. Please send me a regular email and tell me more about your dissertation research. (you can find my email address on my website: I agree with you that "collection of works" is not a great term for portfolios, but it is a place to start. Perhaps "collections of works with deep thinking" would address the next level... not short, but descriptive (that is my second level). The third level would be "collections of work with deep thinking, organized for demonstration of... [insert your purpose here]. This is outlined in my online article: