Sunday, October 31, 2010

Scientific research shows how we "learn" without "learning"

According to interesting research done at the University of California" you can learn without realizing what you are doing."  The new study offers insights into the effectiveness of things like the Communicative Approach to language learning and Extensive Reading.

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Vocabulary Websites with Emphasis on Oral English

Teachers can differentiate instruction for students who need to hear the pronunciation of English words by referring students to two vocabulary websites that have an oral emphasis.

Vanessa Vaile wants to share "Integrate Technology in the Classroom"


Vanessa Vaile's notes: This site is setup to give you an overview of a book, "Great Ways to Integrate Technology in the Classroom-21st Century Curriculum: Activities That Will Keep Your Students Engaged". It is intended to help teachers integrate technology into their curriculum.

More of my teaching and ESL bookmarks at and
Delivered by the tastiest bookmarks on the web

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Free Movie Classics Online

Here's a fun way to practice your listening. Add writing practice to your movie watching experience by writing a review to share with the group. Here's a link to an article on how to write a movie review

Almost a year ago, we started scouring the web for free movies – for films worth your precious time. We started with 75, and now we're above 200. What will you find on the ever-growing list of Free Movies Online

Films by Orson Welles, Francis Ford Coppola, Alfred Hitchcock, Stanley Kubrick, David Lynch, Brian DePalma, Jean-Luc Godard, Andrei Tarkovsky, Fritz Lang, Elia Kazan, Howard Hawks, Ida Lupino, Ken Loach, Akira Kurosawa, Billy Wilder, and Martin Scorsese. 

The list covers many different genres (comedies, film noir, indies, documentaries, short and animated films, even some noteworthy B movies) and spans the entire history of cinema, moving from early silent films to contemporary movies. It also features brilliant performances by major actresses and actors – too many to name right here. 

For copyright reasons, there's generally a heavy emphasis on the classics. If you have time to spare, check out the full collection of Free Movies Online. And if we're missing any good ones, please feel free to send us your tips or add them to the comments section below.

Find more good free stuff on Open Culture. Follow on Facebook and Twitter

Your latest post


I visited your blog this morning. I could read your post dated on October 17. There was no your post dated on October 26.

By the way, I looked for "get somewhere" on my big dictionary and I understand what it means. Thank you for your e-mail. I got wiser.


A World To Change

Hello all,

Here is a project I have been involved with lately. It's not the only one but is the one that relates to what we are doing here. I am following, not taking for credit, an online course called a MOOC (Massive Online Open Course) that is about PLNs, learning technology and approaches to/ theories about teaching and learning. Sound familiar?

Personally, I'm partial to edupunk. What about you?

"This week I am in week five of an online course called PLENK, which I'm offering with three colleagues in the research community here in Canada.

As we reach the midpoint of the course, enrollment has just passed 1500 student mark. The discussions are reasonably active, we're aggregating 227 student blogs, 1340 of them are reading the daily newsletter, and the tweet count has just passed 1701.

We're not the first people in the world to offer an online course, of course. Nor is this the largest online course ever offered -- it doesn't even match our own record of 2200 participants, which we reached in 2008 with Connectivism and Connective Knowledge, much less the other online courses that have been offered over the years.

Our course is just the latest in a series of projects intended to rethink the concept of a course, to redesign learning, learning theory and learning technology, and to open access to learning to every person (or at least, every person with an internet connection) in the world. More on that in a bit.

PLENK -- Personal Learning Environments, Networks and Knowledge -- is about an emerging online learning technology called the personal learning environment, or PLE. Some of us are building PLEs."

PS Now it's your turn to write about what you've been working on.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

new learning video: In the House

 A new English vocabulary video, In the House, has been uploaded to My English Dictionary
The 28 words in the learn English video include: air conditioner, bathtub, bed, chair, chandelier
closet, clothes dryer, computer, curtains, door, iron, ironing board, monitor, night stand, painting, pillow, plant, radiator, rug, sewing machine, sofa, stairs, table, telephone, television, vacuum cleaner, washing machine, window

The address for the new video is

Please comment on the video and others at the same site. Do you recommend this video and website to group members? How would you rate the site? What learning level is it most suitable for?

The My English Dictionary site owner also welcomes feedback and invites you to share the video.

Does Language Emerge?

English (or any other language people speak) is hopelessly unsuited to serve as our internal medium of computation....People can be forgiven for overrating language. Words make noise, or sit on a page, for all to hear and see. Thoughts are trapped inside the head of the thinker. To know what someone else is thinking, or to talk to each other about the nature of thinking, we have to use – what else, words! Stephen Pinker – The Language Instinct

Does language emerge? And what exactly does that mean? Sugata Mitra defines emergence as the appearance of a property not previously observed as a functional characteristic of the system. Meddings and Thornbury (Teaching Unplugged) define emergence as “the idea that certain systems are more than the sum of their parts and that a small number of rules or laws can generate systems of surprising complexity”. All right, then. Why is it that I am writing about this?

On your way to the closing paragraph below, read the rest of Does Language Emerge? in Doing some thinking

The closing paragraph:
Language can be taught, it can be learned, consciousness awareness is also an important aspect to be taken into account, but language also emerges. Learners will go beyond the bits and pieces that they’ve been taught and will be able to come up with something original as long as we teach them it’s OK to try. It is language interaction that fosters language learning, not exposure alone. And interaction asks for originality, it asks for more than what was taught. It asks for a certain drive to speak and manipulate the language, which subsequently emerges naturally.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

English Learning Tips

Improve English Quickly - English Learning Tips Quick Learning and Teaching

The Best Places To Learn Web 2.0 Basics

As you may already have noticed, Web 2.0 and social networking tools play an important part in building Personal Learning Networks. Which ones do you already use? Which ones are you unfamiliar with? Try to become more familiar with at least 1-2 more and make them part of your Personal Learning Environment. Plus, you can learn more uses even for the ones you are familiar with.

To avoid confusion and use basic tools effectively, you need to know more about even ones you don't think you'll use. You don't have to use all of the Web 2.0 tools you learn about, but knowing more will help you make better choices. 

ESL Teacher Larry Ferlazzo, who maintains an outstanding website on learning links, writes, 
"I thought it would be helpful to share a list of the sites that I’ve found most helpful and accessible in explaining how to use key Web 2.0 tools like blogs, wikis, Flickr, social bookmarking, RSS readers, etc. You can also find links to the sites I list here, and many more, on the Teachers’ Page on my website.  
There are three sites that I think stand above all the others. They all provide very understandable step-by-step explanations for a variety of key tools. And I think all three are equally good. One is Sue Waters’ Mobile Technology In TAFE Wiki. Another is Vicki Davis’ Cool Cat Teacher Wiki. And the third great site on my list is Russell Stannard’s Teacher Training Videos.
It would probably be okay to stop reading right here, since these three sites more than likely can provide you with all the information you need. However, there are a few more excellent resources you might want to check-out if you have the time.
There are two other places that offer exceptional information on a number of Web 2.0 tools. One is Common Craft, which makes simple explanatory videos. The other is Tim Davies’ blog, where you can print-out a series of one-page guides he wrote about Web 2.0 resources. Other sites have good resources for specific tools.
 (read more on The Best Places to Learn Web 2.0 Basics)

Monday, October 18, 2010

PLENK Week 6: October 18, 2010

Not required reading for he Blogging English study group but posted in case anyone is interested I would recommend the readings for educators, anyone using communication technologies extensively... and  perhaps anyone raising their own crop of or working with digital natives. As for CLW (Computers, Language, Writing), since I'm cross-posting, adding commentary, reflections and such will be in order. I'd like to read and think about selections first as well read PLENK blog reactions and any reactions from the Blogging English study group. Maybe by the end of PLENK I'll have figured out how to add my link there.

Readings: Using PLE/Ns effectively: skills, mindsets, and critical literacies

How have you developed in your understanding of PLE/Ns? After discussions this past week, we've closed the loop on the main topics that relate to defining and evaluating PLE/Ns...detailing tools...and considering future directions.

In week 6, we will focus on the skills needed to be successful with PLE/Ns. What does a learner need to be able to do/to think/to be in order to function in a digital world? The term "literacy" is central here. What does it mean to be literate? By my (George) definition literacy is the ability to participate in the dominant modes of discourse in a particular era.

Being literate requires technical skills, conceptual mindsets, as well as an attitude of tolerance of complexity and ambiguity. These skills are not prominent in many schools and universities. Many students aren't digitally literate either. Our generation is in a transition phase where those who need to teach literacy are often not digitally literate themselves. So it shouldn't surprise educators that students sometimes do silly things online - they are raising themselves in this environment...the mentors are not the adults and teachers that modelled behaviour for previous generations. Mind you, that might not actually be a bad thing

Readings for this week:

New Media Literacy in Education (Robin Good, Howard Rheingold)

Critical Thinking Resources

Some factors to consider when designing semi-autonomous learning environments

Speaking in LOL Cats: What literacy means in the digital era

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Saturday, October 16, 2010


a couple of links on networked and self-paced learning from an online open course I'm following, PLENK2010 (PLENK = Personal Learning Environments, Networks and Knowledge)

My next post

Hi Takaran

I walked today for 70 minutes in Kawagoe to attend my contract bridge club. It was warm and fine day today. In USA, they say that it is like Indian summer,don't it?

I walked slightly slowly. Then my pedometer showed only 1,400 steps. It's difficult for me to walk 20 thousand steps in a day.

I have to go out tomorrow and the day after tom mow. I'll write to you next Tuesday.
Good night!


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Test Yourself | English, Oct. 14, 2010 -

A reading and rhetoric (writing) lesson from The Learning Network at the New York Times + links to more lessons. Check out this learning resource. Is is appropriate for your learning level and goals? Would you add it to your Personal Learning Network, make it part of your Personal Learning Environment? Why or why not?

"Test your reading skills with today’s question, created by Danielle Hoagland and Judith McCaffrey at Grammarlogues from the Times article “For Jenkins, Scary Moment Leaves Career at Crossroads.”

After you’ve clicked “submit answer,” more information will appear. To learn more about this topic, visit a related page on Grammarlogues."

Sunday, October 03, 2010

Posting your pictures


If you want to post your pictures to blogs, please click "Add image" on your new post screen.
You can easily
choose your picture from your PC. These pictures show myself playing my ocarina last week. You can't hear how well I played my ocarina, can't you? Sadamu

My self introduction


I think that I had introduced myself already. However I couldn't remember when and where. I had read your introduction before. I'm not sure whether it was written for our class mates.

I use Google to communicate with Vanessa. As I was inactive on blogging-English for long time, I think that you are able to see almost no MSG between Vanessa and me on it.

Today, I linked your blog to mine on Google Reader. I hope this works well.


Friday, October 01, 2010

PLN: Porte-cochere: Teacher Vanessa,Thank you very much for your kin...


I read your post. I now understand that your blog and mine are linked together. At first, I'm very pleased to start PLN with you. Thank you for your acceptance.

By the way, you use three kind of name on your blog. I called you Takaram on my last MSG, but you signed Takeshi on your MSG. If you don't mind, would you please use only one name on your blog.


: Teacher Vanessa,

Thank you very much for your kin...: "Teacher Vanessa, Thank you very much for your kind invitation. It was a very long way to come up here. It was a hard job. I have learned a ..."
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...