This project (2020-1-PT01-KA226-HE-094809) has been funded with support from the European Commission.
This web site reflects the views only of the author, and the Commission cannot be held responsible for any use which may be made of the information contained therein.

Select language  >  EN ES HU IT LT PT RO

Database of Teaching Sources

A database of selected, reviewed, tested, assessed and validated e-learning based language teaching sources addressed to Higher education students for the learning of 18 different European languages.

Back to Teaching Sources

La casa sostenibile di Chiara Tonelli

Date of Publication

16 aprile 2015

Target Group


Domain Area

Journalism & multimedia

Learning Scenario

Autonomous learning
Classroom Context

Target Language


Language of Instruction

Any language

CEFR level


Type of Material


Linguistic Features



Critical Thinking


This video comprehension activity – created by Roberto Balò, a L2/LS Italian teacher – is intended for students and professionals (teachers, interpreters and translators) from level B1 onwards and aims both to deepen the knowledge of the lexicon of eco-sustainable architecture through the analysis of an authentic video and to improve written and oral production skills. In this way, the resource can be used for multiple task: note taking, transcripts, summary or expansion.

In the video, Chiara Tonelli – architect and team leader of the first Italian group admitted to the international Solar Decathlon Europe competition held in Madrid in 2012 – presents “MED in Italy”, a prototype of a house powered by renewable energy, explaining its working and its principal characteristics.

The materials can be used both for classroom context in a course if appropriately prepared by the teacher and for autonomous study, allowing the interaction of the participants through the possibility of leaving comments and receiving feedback from Roberto Balò on the activities carried out.

Case study

The resource was tested and evaluated by 12 ERASMUS students (9 at B1.3 level and 2 at B2.2/B2.3 level) enrolled in Italian language courses at the University of Bologna.
The following positive aspects emerged from the analysis:
- topical theme. The content of the video is extremely motivating due to its topicality. In this way, you learn the language and at the same time you learn something new about ecological architecture;
- gradual difficulty of the exercises to better understand the multimedia material;
- links to other articles and related activities; suggestions for further self-study and deepening of content;
- the web page offers a variety of exercises: one for reading comprehension, one for oral comprehension with a Youtube video and one on vocabulary. The activities are so diverse because they make use of different types of materials; this aspect is very positive because the student learns a lot from different types of input;
- Regarding the technical features and graphic aspects, the video is very dynamic and attractive with music in the background.
Negative aspects:
- Cannot write on the page;
- Lack of interactivity on the website;
- Lack of answers/results/corrections to activities;
- The design of the web page is not very attractive;
- One cannot click directly on the video;
- Lack of updates on the website;
- Advertisements on the side of the page do not help the reader to concentrate, given the information overload.
Suggested use: The activities are geared towards university students or adults in general, as the structure of the activities requires the ability to study independently. There should be an interactive input mask and the possibility of self-monitoring/correction.


The video is suitable for both students as they can explore it autonomously and teachers who can use the materials with their students in classroom setting in the context of Language for Specific Purposes. The activities proposed can be used flexibly to suit students’ needs, combining written tasks with audio and visual materials. Also, this resource could be implemented as a part of a much more comprehensive teaching unit in a largely communicative, active and learner-centred approach.


Comprehensive approach
Capacity to match the needs of lecturers and students


Added value
The provided tangible improvements


Motivation enhancement
The capacity to motivate students to improve their language skills


Effectiveness in introducing innovative, creative and previously unknown approaches to LSP learning


Measurement of the transferable potential and possibility to be a source of further capitalisation/application for other language projects in different countries


Skills assessment and validation
Availability of appropriate tools for lecturers to monitor students’ progress and for students to assess own progress and to reflect on learning


Flexibility of the contents and possibilities for the LSP lecturers to adapt the contents to their and to students’ need


Assess the technical usability from the point of view of the lecturer and the student


Assess the accessibility from the point of view of the lecturer and the student


This teaching resource offers interesting insights from both linguistic and topical point of view, suiting the needs of intermediate and advanced students who want to expand their language proficiency in the field. It can be implemented as part of a much more comprehensive course. The resource presents the subject in a clear manner and can increase students’ interest and motivation: the short video, text and activities provide good opportunities for the development of listening, reading, writing, speaking and vocabulary. The resource meets teachers’ needs to use recent, up-to-date and appealing materials; furthermore, the same structure of activities can be adapted for other existing audiovisual sources. The materials proposed could also be used by professionals (translators and interpreters) to deepen their vocabulary.
Website of the Teaching Source: