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Listening to headphones
In preparation for an upcoming workshop on podcasting and audio tools for the ABE/ESL classroom, I've been testing out a free tool from CLEAR called Broadcasts. CLEAR is a federally funded language resource center, and they create, host, and share free tools for language educators. Broadcasts is intended to give teachers a simple, hassle-free, no special software required way to produce a podcast.
English for Work video screenshot
The English for Work Interactive Video Series, created by former MLC - Arlington Hills Learning Center teacher Bethany Gustafson, was designed to give students the vocabulary and language to succeed at work they were already doing in the hopes this would help prepare them for supervisory positions.
Minimizing teacher talk means not only limiting the number of words you use, but also thinking about which words you use. Here are some speaking tips to aid in communicating with your learners.
Stop sign with frost
I asked the students what they thought of the snow and most gave me a scornful look. But I was happy to see that falling snow and blustery weather wouldn't stop my stalwart students.
The new "visual thesaurus" online tools that are springing up on the Internet represent word relationships in a sort of web, showing the connections that are close as a knot of tightly grouped words, the loose connections sort of drifting away on a tether, the antonyms in an opposing color, and so on. By displaying information visually, they tell us something about words and the relationships among them that I don't think I can quite get from my old thesaurus.
This activity provides practice in spelling clarification and requesting to borrow something.
If you were a fan of the Minneapolis ABE Online Activity List I'm sure you have discovered that it's gone! The content, however, has not disappeared forever. It is being reorganized and republished on a new site: http://abeonline.mpls.k12.mn.us.
McDonald's meal
Susan, the nutritionist from the from the University of Minnesota Simply Good Eating program, returned to our class today, much to the delight of the learners. Students talked about how some of them had gained weight since coming to the U.S. and brainstormed why.
New Routes to Community Health is a program / project based in Wisconsin that is using immigrant-created media (video, podcasts, radio programs, etc.) to educate immigrant communities about health-related issues. Media projects include videos and audio programs that discuss issues as diverse as H1N1 flu, sexually transmitted diseases, childhood obesity, and mental illness & depression. All media projects can be accessed on their website at http://newroutes.org.
Pie
After explaining some typical traditions surrounding Thanksgiving, learners listed what they were thankful for.

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