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Saturday, July 26, 2008

Palabea.net - The Speaking World

Palabea.net

Are you looking for people who you can practice your English with? That language partner with whom you can speak or write to in English? Palabea is the social network that will help you find them.

In this web page you’ll be able to chat and talk with people whose native language is English and who are interested in learning your mother tongue. Moreover, palabea offers very interesting material for learning English, such as:
  • Documents, podcasts and videos. Along with the possibility of uploading your own resources.
  • Joining a virtual classroom or creating a new one.

Not only does Palabea exist for learning English, but in this social network it is possible to learn other languages: Spanish, German, French, Japanese, Portuguese, etc.

Palabea is a very intuitive, easy-to-use and well organized web site. Summing up, 100 x 100 recommended. Do you palabease?

Visit Palabea.net
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Monday, July 21, 2008

UsingEnglish.com - Huge Collection of Resources

UsingEnglish.com

UsingEnglish.com provides a large collection of tools and resources with which to learn English. It has so much material that probably you won’t know where to start looking! Fortunately, the resources are well organised:
  • English Language Reference: English Idioms, English Phrasal Verbs, English Irregular Verbs, Grammar Glossary.
  • ESL (English as a Second Language) Tests: English Quizzes, Language Tests, Reading Comprehension, Language Polls.
  • ESL Articles: Grammar Usage Articles, ways to improve your English, etc.
  • ESL Teacher Resources: Teacher Handouts & Printables, PDF Lesson Plans & Worksheets, etcetera.
  • ESL Discussion Forums: find answers to your doubts or ask new questions.
  • More Tools & Resources: Text Analysis & Statistics, Essay Samples, Free Software Downloads, ESL Web Directory.
Personally, what I most like from this web site are the tests. Using these tests you can check your knowledge of the English language. After finishing a test, you are graded and shown which questions you got wrong and the number of questions that you answered correctly.

This web page contains very valuable material. What are you waiting for?!

Visit UsingEnglish.com
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Saturday, July 19, 2008

Languagecaster.com - English and Football

Languagecaster.com

Do you like football? Do you want to learn English? In that case we present you with the perfect combination: languagecaster.com. This is a Web page with many football related news reports/articles/items that will allow you to improve your English, while finding out about your favourite sport. The web page is in blog format with weekly posts written in English.

There is a wide variety of material for every post:
  • A podcast that relates the news: the podcasts are in m4a format so if you want to listen to them you need to install compatible software. For instance Quicktime (it’s free); download it here.
  • Worksheets and complete transcriptions: the worksheets contain questions related to the podcast (true or false, vocabulary and so on) as well as the answers, so you can check your responses for accuracy.
  • Interesting vocabulary appears in the podcast.
Note also that the Web page offers online games and puzzles with which you can have fun and learn from, or you can proofread the new vocabulary.

Furthermore, the posts (with the podcast) are created weekly. However, there may be a gap between the creation of the posts and that of the worksheets, i.e., the last post might be out of synch with its corresponding worksheet. So be patient; you can always work with previous posts or hold on until the new material is uploaded.

Will Ronaldo leave Manchester United?

Visit languagecaster.com
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Sunday, July 13, 2008

LingQ - Improve Your Vocabulary with Podcasts

LingQ

“The number of words that you know is the best indicator of your command of the language”. This is what LingQ proposes and personally I pretty much agree with it. This online resource provides the necessary tools for increasing our English language vocabulary.

The method of working is easy. Firstly, select a text from the extensive library from which you can choose articles, audiobooks, conversations, interviews (there are about different categories.) After selecting the text, start working on it: reading it, listening to the associated podcast and registering the number of times you have read and listened to it, as well.

Another very interesting feature is that you can choose words whose meaning is unknown to you. Press the “LingQ!” button and you’ll see its meaning in your own language. If you opt to save that word, it will appear highlighted in the text (very useful!) and will be inserted in your own vocabulary list.

The words that you’ve saved will appear in the Vocabulary tab and from there you’ll be able to proofread them, mark them as known, and change their state, etc.

Finally, note also that LingQ allows you to create flashcards with the new words; and what’s more, there’s a handy graphic that displays your goals and progress.

Let’s increase our vocabulary!

Visit LingQ
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Saturday, July 12, 2008

Learn English Kids

Learn English Kids

Do you want the kids to learn English? Are you looking for games which they can have fun with and learn from as well? This web page will definitely help you to “Learn English, Kids!” It contains a lot of material from which the children can have a fun time while improving their English.

Some of the resources that this web page offers are:
  • Games: huge quantity of games, truly enjoyable.
  • Print some activities to do: colour, join images.
  • Songs: dozens of catchy and educational songs.
  • Stories: short stories, longer stories, stories for little kids.
  • Get Writing: it is possible to create personalized poems or stories. It is also possible to write reviews about your favourite books and films.
If you don’t know where to start, you can always go to the topics section and see the existing resources about ancient Egypt, the alphabet, pets, pirates and much more!

A 100 x 100 recommended web site for the youngest learners (and not so young!)

Visit Learn English Kids
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Sunday, July 6, 2008

WordReference - Superb Online Dictionary

WordReference

What does “hush” mean? Let’s have a look in our online English dictionary, WordReference.com. This resource is very useful for looking up unknown words or words whose meanings are not easily remembered. It’s really fast; write the word, press search and in a few seconds we’ll get the meaning.

WordReference translates from English to Spanish, English to French, English to Italian, English to German and English to Russian, and vice versa.

Another attractive feature of this online dictionary is its supportive forums. Sometimes the words that we look for are not found in the dictionary entries, though they are found in the forum entries, in which case we can have a look there and see what has been written about a particular word or sentence. Moreover, if we don’t find what we are looking for we can always create a new entry in the forum and wait for someone to help us out.

Very good online dictionary… what was the meaning of that word “hush”?

Visit WordReference.com
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Saturday, July 5, 2008

Find Great Podcasts on ESL Podcast

ESL Podcast

Are you looking for podcasts? We are pleased to present a web page with thousands of them in English, organised into different categories: Dalily Life, English Café, Transportation, Health/Medicine, Business, Relationships, Travel and Entertainment.

The podcasts are complete and structured in the following way:
  1. Short description about the podcast itself (title and number) and the web page where it is taken
  2. Dialogue read at a slower pace.
  3. Descriptions and examples of how to use the vocabulary and grammar employed in the dialogue.
  4. Same dialogue read at a standard pace.
Every podcast can be listened to online or downloaded so that it can be listened to on our ipod, or any other compatible device.

Notice that listening to podcasts online, or downloading them, is free. However, this web page offers a Learning Guide for each podcast and the guides contain complete transcripts, definitions, additional explanations and etc., but they are not free of charge.

The podcasts, whose average length is between 10 and 15 minutes, are really good, so go on, try them!

Visit ESL Podcast
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