Sunday, October 30, 2011

The Art of Building Virtual Communities

What if after planning a self-paced study group, setting up a blog, preparing and study materials, and taking time to answer students asking about lesson and nobody shows up? Or worse, people show up, take a quick look around, decide it isn’t worth their time and leave! A self paced, cooperative study group is the only way I can offer more than just a few and those at different levels the opportunity to work on their English.

We are getting more visitors but still none stopping to ask questions or leave a message. I am looking for ideas to get visitors to stick around and still not giving up.

One model that holds merit an be found on the Learning Circuits Blog. How do you think this would work for Blogging English?

It is developed around the roles and interactions members of a community have as participants in that community: Linking; Lurking; Learning; Leading.

I bet w already have linkers (visitors who bookmark and save or share the link) and lurkers. Now we need active learners. More leaders would help too.

'via Blog this'

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Welcome to Blogging English

Welcome to our self-paced study group for English learners. Please take the time to visit the site. Check out resources and links. Join our ESL open study group by clicking the "follow" button on the right hand side of the page.

PS ~ Before you go, don't forget to leave a message introducing yourself or just saying hello!

Where do you want to go with English? What are you working on? What are your goals? Please leave a message telling us more about your learning interests and plans. How can we help? Do you have a personal learning plan? We can help you develop a plan and customize your own Personal Learning Network.

Do have suggestions, ideas about features to improve the study group?  Should we add a separate discussion group, chat, bulletin board to leave messages, voice messages? Let us know.

If you have questions about grammar and usage, please post them at StudyCom's Question and Help Board. You will also find many learning resources, mini-lessons and study guides there.

In the meantime, check out these Great Sites for Students to Practice English

I look forward to reading your messages and welcoming you to our group,


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

About ESL Newsletter: Speaking Speaking is the topic of this week's About ESL newsletter. For "dessert" ~ spooky talk. Poe's Raven and a candy haunted house for Halloween,

Speaking English well is the goal of all English learners. In this newsletter, you'll learn about speaking English on the telephonespeaking English in situations at work, and speaking English in everyday situations, also known as small talk.

Here are ten questions to help you 
start speaking English
. Each of these questions help to begin or continue a conversation. The questions are in two categories: Basic Facts and Hobbies / Free Time. There are also a number of questions that can help you continue the conversation after the first question.

Teachers can help students with lesson plans on practicing telephone English, and making small talkTeachers will also be interested in this lesson focusing on how to get an ESL class conversing.

candy haunted house ~ how to make one

Finally, it's Halloween here in the United States soon. Have fun learning spooky English with the Halloween resources on the site, including a vocabulary quiz"The Raven" by Edgar Allan Poe and more.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Schools and Creativity [videos]

 This video is to help non-native speakers of English understand the gist of Sir Ken Robinson's TED 2006 conference keynote on "Do Schools Kill Creativity" (below).Please watch it before or after viewing this one. 

Sir Ken Robinson's TED 2006 conference keynote address "Do Schools Kill Creativity" makes an entertaining and profoundly moving case for creating an education system that nurtures (rather than undermines) creativity.


What do you think of these videos and the ideas they express? Do you agree or disagree with Sir Ken Robinson? What was your school experience like?

Monday, October 10, 2011

More Larry Ferlazzo “Links I Should Have Posted"

via Larry Ferlazzo's Websites of the Day... by Larry Ferlazzo on 10/9/11. He writes, 
I have a huge backlog of resources that I've been planning to post about in this blog but, just because of time constraints, have not gotten around to doing so. Instead of letting that backlog grow bigger, I regularly grab a few and list them here with a minimal description.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Beginner Level - The Best ESL Videos

Real English ESL Video & Lessons ~ Beginner Level. Double-Click on any word on the page for an English definition, or translation
Real English is different. Students who have not lived in an English-speaking country should begin with Lesson 1! The people in the videos are spontaneous. Spontaneity is difficult, just like real situations with strangers are difficult. The people seem to speak fast, but in reality, they are speaking at normal speed.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

100 Most Often Misspelled Words in English

Help with #spelling for ESL learners and native speakers. They have problems with English spelling and make mistakes too. English spelling is notoriously inconsistent. Improving your spelling will help you not just with writing but also reading and vocabulary development. Be patient though - mastering spelling won't happen overnight.

"Here are the 100 words most commonly misspelled ('misspell' is one of them). Dr. Language has provided a one-stop cure for all your spelling ills. Each word has a mnemonic pill with it and, if you swallow it, it will help you to remember how to spell the word. Master the orthography of the words on this page and reduce the time you spend searching dictionaries by 50%. (Use the time you save celebrating in our gameroom.)"

Teaching Spelling Strategies to ESL Students (also from YourDictionary)

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Beginners - Resources, Lesson Plans, Activities

The current issue of's ESL's Newsletter focuses on beginners and includes: helpful 20 point absolute beginner teaching guide; other beginning level English lesson plans; review or starter with 25 basic English lessons; practice exercises for asking questions in English; a lesson explaining the common verbs do or make.

Are You an Absolute Beginner? 
Do you understand the question? If yes - you are not an absolute beginner. If no - then you might be an absolute beginner. A simple definition of absolute beginners... Read more

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