learningchocolate.com

Website Review: learningchocolate.com

In short: This site will really help students get better vocabulary.  You can practice almost 100 different groups of words. Some groups are for beginners (numbers, colors, etc.) and some are for intermediate or even advanced students (internal organs, beef, etc.). There are five different ways to practice each group of words.

Also, you can find a nice links to other helpful sites.

For students: The pictures and the sounds are very useful for your memory. This site is easy to use. Why not do one set every night before you go to bed?

For teachers: Before doing a lesson on one of these topics, send your students to learn the vocabulary here. Then, when you start the lesson, you’ll start the lesson with a review and they’ll learn it that much better.

Review Questions Game

Review Questions Game

This is a Jeopardy like game for classes that have studied a lot of materials

Create five categories For categories, you might choose “Grammar”, “Vocabulary”, “Spelling”, “Culture Bits” and “Your Teacher”. It depends on your class and your textbook.

Create fifty questions Now, think of 10 questions for each category. Order the questions by difficulty. The easiest questions will be worth 100 points. The hardest questions will be worth 1000 points.

Set up On the board, create a grid. Label the columns with the categories. Then there should be rows for 100 point questions, 200 point questions, etc.

Create teams and play Divide the class into teams. The teams choose a category and a point value. If they get the question right, they get the points. If they get it wrong, the next team gets a chance.

Beyond Practice Tests: Negative Factual Information Questions

Beyond Practice Tests: Negative Factual Information Questions

On a test like the TOEFL, Negative Factual Information questions ask you to find missing things. You’ll get four choices (A,B,C,D). Three things will be true. One will be false. You should choose the false thing. These are the opposite of Factual Information Questions where one thing is true and three are false. For example:

Steven can’t go to the party because of all the homework he has to do. Plus, he doesn’t even have money to get a bus. And Sarah will be there. He really doesn’t want to see her. So, he’ll stay at home again. Tonight he will do his homework. After that, he’ll watch a movie and go on the internet.

Why can’t Steven go to the party?

  1. a. He doesn’t know where the party is.
  2. b. He has a lot of homework.
  3. c. He doesn’t have money for a bus.
  4. d. Sarah will be there and he doesn’t want to see her.

What will he do tonight?

  1. a. He will play video games.
  2. b. He will do his homework.
  3. c. He’ll watch a movie.
  4. d. He’ll go on the internet.

Negative Factual Information questions are pretty easy. The thing that you can’t find is the answer. You should find three things and make sure you can’t find one thing.

Here are five study strategies.

Answers First First, make a list of four things. Then write something that uses three of them. For example, if your list was “bread, butter, eggs, sugar”, you might write “I bought bread, eggs, and sugar.” Of course, your answer can be much longer, but you’ll get used to how to create the questions. This will make it easier for you to answer them.

Change Factual Information Questions Look at some “Factual Information” questions on a practice test. Change the factual information questions into negative factual info questions by changing the grammar of the question. For instance, if the question is “How many cars did he buy” and the answer is “two”. You could change the question to “How many cars didn’t he buy”?

Add to Groups You’ll be very good at these questions if you can see groups quickly. You’ll see groups more quickly if you find groups of things that have stuff in common. Then think of things that you could add to the lists. For example, if you found an article that talked about France, Germany, and Spain; you might write Holland, Italy, and Poland. (They’re all European countries.)

Create Groups After reading something, add sentences to it. Add sentences so that there are groups of three things. So, if the text talks about apples and oranges, you could write about bananas to create a group of three.

Three Truths and a Lie Think of people, places, objects and events. Write three true sentences and one false sentence about them. For example, think about New York City. You could write: It’s in  the USA. The Statue of Liberty is there. It’s the biggest city in the world. The New York Yankees play there. Three are true. Which one is false?

iteslj.org

Website Review: iteslj.org

In short: One of the five best ESL sites on the internet. They have everything. They’ve been putting out great material for 15 years and let’s hope they never stop. Their own menu bar says it all: Articles, Lessons, Techniques, Questions, Games, Jokes, Things for Teachers, Links, and Activities for Students.

The site is organized perfectly. There’s no distracting advertising. If you have a slow connection, this site will still load quickly. What more could you want?

For students: The “Activities for Students” button will take you to this site a4esl.org, There, you’ll find many fun things you can do to improve your English.

For teachers: You can learn from the articles and use the lessons, techniques, etc. Why not contribute as well? See if you can get an article published. You’ll learn a lot while preparing it and give a little back to the community of teachers and students around the world.

Running Dictation

Running Dictation

Imagine: It’s a beautiful day out. A day that, by all rights, should be reserved exclusively for picnics and frolicking. You walk into your classroom and it’s clear the students feel the same way. Here’s an activity that the students will remember for years.

First, you need some bit of text—a paragraph from a reading in your textbook, a dialogue on the theme, or something else.

You’re going to go outside, but before you do, explain the rules of the game.

Students will be in groups of three. The playground will be divided into three sections. The first student can only move in the first section. The second student can only move in the second section and the third student can only move in the third section.

The first student should read the text and tell the second student. The second student should tell the third student. The third student should write it down.

The first team to correctly write the whole text is the winner.

Notes: If that’s clear, you can stop reading, but here are some additional notes:

Before you go outside, you might draw something like this on the board

Book/Sun Hee–>

<–Michael–>

<–Sasha/Paper and Pen

Book/Yosep–>

<–Vakhtang–>

<–Makiko/Paper and Pen

Book/Fatma–>

<–Hye Young–>

<–Pavel/Paper and Pen

Etc. Etc. Etc.

If you take a few chairs outside with you, then you could put the books and papers/pens on the chairs and insist that they stay there.

You might stay by the students with the paper and pens in order to say when they’ve finished or tell them if it’s not correct yet.

Or, you could make them just hand it in to you. If the first finishers have any mistakes, then they won’t win. The winners are the first ones to finish without any errors.

This was inspired by part of this lesson plan at the British Council’s fabulous site. Thanks!

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