Learning English, on your own and according to your own wishes and needs, has never been easier. Everyone with internet access can become autotelic, or self-directed, in creating their own educational program. Naturally, innovative ESL educators and EFL schools have embraced these possibilities to enrich their English classrooms.
The endless web continually offers pleasant surprises. This weekend I found new more exceptional free websites for English teachers, tutors, and students: USA Learns, BBC Learning English, and YapPR. I strongly recommend you explore them.
USA Learns – www.usalearns.org This U.S. Department of Education website for adult immigrants and future American citizens combines video lessons and clear written ESL materials. Launched in November 2008, this site has rapidly developed an international audience of English language learners worldwide.
BBC Learning English http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/newsenglish/ An outstanding website with audio, transcripts, and sometimes video of the world news written for English language learners. This excellent resource works for English students, ESL teachers, and EFL tutors.
YapPR – www.en.yappr.com – This innovative public relations site highlights short music videos, amusing commercials, and AP news stories with English transcriptions for English language learners. An accessible, clean videosharing site designed for ESL/EFL students. Does the public relations element bother me? Not really. The transcription feature provides valuable information for students which outweighs the apparent “pay to play” selection bias.
This is the best time – so far – to study and teach English. Never before have we had so many resources available – often for free -to explore and experiment with new technologies.
And tomorrow will be even better!