Thursday, February 28, 2013

Fun With Words: Collective Nouns

One of the craziest oddities of the English language is that there are so many different collective nouns that all mean "group" but which are specific to what particular thing there is a group of: a herd of elephants, a crowd of people, a box of crayons, a pad of paper, etc. There is great diversity of collective nouns associated with animals, from a sleuth of bears to a murder of crows Visit the page linked below for a list correct terms to describe groups of various types of animals.

Fun With Words: Collective Nouns

What is your favorite fun with words?

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Movies for Learning English

…are an effective way to build listening comprehension and vocabulary ~ and entertaining too. Sadammu recently wrote asking about movies:
My Dear Teacher Vanessa  
Sorry for my not writing to you for a long time. Though I didn't e-mail to you these days, I had read your post on Facebook. So I know you are in high spirits.  
By the way, you taught us many resources before. I'm now interested in watching movies. I looked for it on my PC. But I couldn't find it. I missed it. Would you tell me resources for free movies which you showed us?  
Regards, Sadamu

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Reading Sage: Reading Boot Camp

…reading is the key to learning grammar, vocabulary, spelling, and writing. The "reading boot camp" described here is for a classroom but can also be adapted to self paced study. If you teach, think about trying it. If you are in a class, ask your teacher about trying a reading boot camp. You could also form a reading a group based this model. 
Reading Boot Camp uses the Finnish model of cooperative learning structures, collaborative teaching, enrichment, and active student learning! 
Putting great literature, poetry, games and books in children’s [and any readers'] hands is the foundation of Reading Boot Camp, not predigested workbooks, endless photo copies, and needless busy work. Reading Boot Camp is back to basics with a common sense sledge hammer to the outsider. Students find it rewarding and fantastic! Why implement Reading Boot Camp? 
The real answer is kids love reading and learning! The administrative answer is, 95% of all students that attend Reading Boot Camp make over a years growth in reading. 90% of all students including NES, ESL, and special education students pass state reading test in some of the poorest Title I schools! Reading Boot Camp is the same Education model that is used in Finland with amazingly the same results!
Reading Sage: Reading Boot Camp 

Thursday, February 07, 2013

Is English Easy for You?

Chances are you can't give a yes or no answer to the question: "Is English easy for you?" Perhaps a better answer would be: "It depends." The use of the phrase it depends can take a number of different forms:
It depends on the class.
It depends if I have enough time to study.
It depends on what type of English class it is.
This guide to the use of 'It depends' will help you use this form to give more complete answers depending on the situation.

Is English Easy for You?

Monday, February 04, 2013

VOALearningEnglish Video

…I keep tagging posts from the VOA Special English's Learning English YouTube channel to share but not getting around to it. You can also subscribe to video updates on the YouTube channel, as well as following on Facebook, Twitter or both.

Add the links to your personal learning network ~ your own personal collection of pages and tools to help you learn English. I haven't posted about that for a while. The topic is overdue a return revisit. Have you have been working on your own PLN?  If you have it online, please share the link with us.

VOALearningEnglish has uploaded Income Inequality Seen as World's Biggest Risk Over Next 10 Years.
Income Inequality Seen as World's Biggest Risk Over Next 10 Years
From VOA Learning English, this is the Economics Report in Special English. The World Economic Forum says the most likely risk facing the world over the next 10 years is a big difference between rich and poor. The estimate was made in a new report called the World Economic Forum's Global Risks 2013. Food availability and the spread of terrorism are noted every year. But new risks, especially technological and economic ones, are getting more attention. The report was based on surveys of more than 1,000 experts from around the world. They considered the likelihood and impact of risks should they become reality. Sharp income disparity was considered the most likely problem to take place in the next 10 years. This is the second straight year that a wealth gap was named. Next was what the report called "chronic fiscal imbalances," or the failure of governments to deal with heavy debt over time.The risk said to have the biggest possible impact was a major failure in the world financial system...
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