Ideas and resources for parents of ESL/ELL students

These reviewed resources offer information so share with parents of ESL/ELL students. Some are resources parents can use at home with children to reinforce language skills. Others include suggested activities ESL/ELL learners can begin in school and share with parents. Be sure to read the "In the Classroom" suggestions for ways these reviewed resources can build language skills both at home and at school.

 

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English Interactive - A. Gil and H. Massingham

Grades
2 to 10
1 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This wonderful, highly interactive ESL site includes survival topics, grammar, culture, and vocabulary at three levels for English learners. The BIG caveat is that the explanation for...more
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This wonderful, highly interactive ESL site includes survival topics, grammar, culture, and vocabulary at three levels for English learners. The BIG caveat is that the explanation for the teachers and students and a lot of the metalanguage is in Spanish. Click on menu, though, and all the topics come up in English. The intermediate and advanced levels are still under construction, but the highly interactive quality of the beginning sites offers a promise of continued excellent material. Click on the "P" on the left side of the interface to see printable reviews of many topics, especially grammar, all in English. The most in-depth portions are survival vocabulary and grammar.

Be sure to turn off your pop-up blocker so you can "see" all the site content. Although the pronunciation is in British English, this is a great, high-content site. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): grammar (214), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Save this site to your favorites so you (and your students) can easily find this site. Include this site on your teacher web page for students and parents to access as a reference and for engaging extra practice.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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The Monticello Classroom - Thomas Jefferson Foundation

Grades
4 to 12
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Invite your students to step into Thomas Jefferson's Monticello and experience colonial life. This educational website is beautifully designed for both students and teachers to use...more
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Invite your students to step into Thomas Jefferson's Monticello and experience colonial life. This educational website is beautifully designed for both students and teachers to use the extensive resources to learn about Jefferson, Monticello, and daily life. The Monticello Classroom provides a student portal with fact and resource sheets, an image gallery, online activities, and a saved favorites section. Web pages offer information by reading levels: elementary, middle, and high school. The image gallery contains a slide show builder for students to create a presentation using the images and copies of primary source documents. The presentations can be saved, printed, or emailed. Students can register for an account to save favorites and other resources. Registration requires a user name, password, first name and last name. Check your school's policies before allowing student accounts, especially with full names! See more hints below.
Teachers can register for a teacher area to create assignments for classes, review the available lesson plans, or build your own, and save your favorites on your personal Monticello Classroom web page. Each class has its own log-in and password and students are able to submit their completed activities to the teacher for review.

tag(s): black history (61), jefferson (20)

In the Classroom

This site can serve a a hub for your unit on colonial life, Jefferson, or even inventors. If you wish your students to register for accounts, be sure to check the students' acceptable use policies or get parent permission in writing. Instead of students using their real first and last names, have students create their own colonial names for registration. Be sure to keep a list of these names to be able to review and assess student work. Give a class introduction to the Monticello Classroom using an interactive whiteboard or projector. Be sure to help your weaker readers and ESL and ELL students by sharing the vocabulary words prior to reading, either on a handout or by projecting on an interactive whiteboard or projector. Highlight the vocabulary words in the text as you come to them. Search the lesson plans, and teachers will find a few that will be particularly helpful for Black History month!

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ESL Podcasts - Internet TESL Journal

Grades
5 to 12
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This site offers a continually updated variety of podcasts on news subjects at a level appropriate for ESL and ELL students. A short description tells the subject of the podcast ...more
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This site offers a continually updated variety of podcasts on news subjects at a level appropriate for ESL and ELL students. A short description tells the subject of the podcast as well as other extras like quizzes, speakers, and creators or originators. Students and teachers can listen from the Internet or download to an MP3 player or local computer. A "Read the Web Page" link takes viewers to the news article or other special feature mentioned in the broadcast. Be certain to preview the podcasts that you plan to use in your class. Some are not appropriate for elementary students and young adolescents. This website requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): listening (91), podcasts (55), stars (65), vocabulary (324), vocabulary development (124)

In the Classroom

Use this page to listen to current events news in simple English. Play them on your speakers for an entire class or provide headphones for individual listening. Have the students try to write the main points of the podcast they listen to and then check their listening against the webpage with the original article. Special education teachers may want to use this resource as an adapted way for students to read and submit weekly current events articles. Mark this site as a favorite on your classroom computer so students can use it during their free time with headphones. Share the link on your teacher web pages for parents and students to access quickly from home, but be sure to suggest that parents of younger students monitor the topics for appropriateness.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Kids' Vid - Mike Keating

Grades
3 to 8
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Leap into video production with help from the Kids' Vid site! Kids' Vid steps you and your students through the process with tips on scripting, storyboarding, shooting video, and editing...more
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Leap into video production with help from the Kids' Vid site! Kids' Vid steps you and your students through the process with tips on scripting, storyboarding, shooting video, and editing it into a visual masterpiece. The site has classroom ideas, short exercises for story writing and learning video shots, an online storyboard creator, and lots of useful help from experts and kids on how to make the whole process an exciting educational experience. Some of the activities require Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): tutorials (48)

In the Classroom

Start the activity by showing the student-produced videos on the web site. Use the resources on the site for a whole class jig-saw exercise. Assign small groups the task of learning one aspect of the process and then reporting and showing it to the rest of the class. Share the knowledge by creating working groups, which contain an expert from each aspect of the process. Use one of the many class ideas as practice activities for students to learn the finer points of video production before they start their masterpieces.

Video is a great tool for authentic assessment - especially for ESL, ELL, and Special Education students. Think about letting each of your students create a short video about what they know for their parent conference meeting or Open House. Explore the realm of possibilities by having students develop and ask peers a "Question of the Week" and document the responses on video. Let students produce a walking tour of the school and key personnel as an introduction for new students. Post this video on the school website, but check the district and students' Acceptable Use Policies before videoing any student faces. You may want to ask your school's funding sources to consider purchasing a few USB plug-in "flip" video cameras that cost about $100 each so students can do these projects with an "indestructible" tool.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Owly Comics - Andy Runton

Grades
K to 4
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This cartoon/graphic novel site offers free previews of many wordless comic books and short graphic novels. You can select the regular length or mini-books. Some examples of the stories...more
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This cartoon/graphic novel site offers free previews of many wordless comic books and short graphic novels. You can select the regular length or mini-books. Some examples of the stories include The Way Home, A Time to Be Brave, Bee Nice, and several others. There are twelve lesson plans available for free download at the Teaching link. Pre-readers, ESL and ELL students, and those learning foreign languages will delight in making up the words to go along with the very expressive pictures here. The lesson plans at this website require Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): comics and cartoons (71), graphic novels (7), novels (24), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Ask students to dictate captions for these stories, write the captions on strips, and put them with the printed pictures. For students able to write, have them write their own captions. Have a caption-writing contest among pairs of students in the classroom. Have ESL and ELL students write simple captions and learn the words for items in the pictures at the same time. Students in foreign language classes can generate desciptions or dialog to go with the stories. Special ed teachers will appreciate the opportunity for students to "narrate" the comics -- and possibly place pages in sequence -- to develop vocabulary. Use printable versions for take-home work with parents, as well. Challenge students to create their own wordless books. Don't forget to check out the twelve lesson plans available at the
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Reading A to Z - learninga-z.com

Grades
K to 6
1 Favorites 0  Comments
This site has downloadable, leveled reading books for sale, but there are plenty of free stories with illustrations. Along with the stories are worksheets to test reading comprehension,...more
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This site has downloadable, leveled reading books for sale, but there are plenty of free stories with illustrations. Along with the stories are worksheets to test reading comprehension, focus on grammar from the stories, and review what took place in the story. The stories are organized by reading level, from A to Z. New free offerings appear frequently. Schools can apply for a free trial to check out the full offerings. Some stories are available in Spanish. The site offers other genres for free download including poetry, comics, pocket books, alphabet books, and wordless books. Phonics books complete the offerings.

Caution: although you are able to use many of these items for free, most downloads ask that you input your email address. You can bypass this by clicking submit without inputting your email address. This website requires Adobe Acrobat. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page. .

tag(s): poetry (224), worksheets (62)

In the Classroom

The books can be projected on an interactive whiteboard for students to highlight new vocabulary, signal words, etc. with their fingers then read independently. Tell your students' parents about this site to encourage them to read or download and print more stories for their children. Include the link in your class newsletter or on your website. Beginning readers, ELL, and ESL students will enjoy the wordless books whose stories they can tell themselves or tell in their own languages. Students may want to make up their own wordless picture books after seeing some of these examples.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Open English World - David Rogers and Michael Huskins,

Grades
8 to 12
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This site's free offerings include useful weekly idioms, business expressions to improve vocabulary, and listening activities on current topics. Translations of the listening sentences...more
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This site's free offerings include useful weekly idioms, business expressions to improve vocabulary, and listening activities on current topics. Translations of the listening sentences into the student's first language are optional and include French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Spanish, Japanese, Korean and simplified Chinese. Spoken utterances are always in English. Be aware there are some advertisements on this page, but nothing too distracting. Students can complete a free registration at this site, but it is not required. There is a Forum for discussion. See TeachersFirst's safety and use tips for using this site in class under Classroom Use. The listening activities require Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): business (58), chinese (50), french (90), idioms (44), japan (62), japanese (43), korea (15), listening (91), spanish (109)

In the Classroom

Mark this site as a Favorite on your classroom computer or on your teacher web page and assign ESL/ELL students to check it weekly for a new idiomatic expression. Newer ESL and ELL students may find the translation feature helpful. The foreign language options could be useful in a German, French, Spanish, or Chinese class. Check your school policies on allowing students to participate in the forum area, and obtain written parent permission before students log on. You may want to use the forum as a whole-class activity with a teacher account. Monitor the discussion boards for a week or two before deciding if they are appropriate for your school situation.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Telephoning English - English Portal.com

Grades
2 to 8
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Students learn appropriate language to use when telephoning and also begin to understand voice mail messages at this site designed for ESL and ELL students. Since using the telephone...more
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Students learn appropriate language to use when telephoning and also begin to understand voice mail messages at this site designed for ESL and ELL students. Since using the telephone is a big challenge when learning a new language, this site will be extremely helpful for newcomers. There are three levels of difficulty available.

tag(s): listening (91)

In the Classroom

Have your students practice the language on this site in a simulated telephone conversation. Have them record the voice mail messages and then play them for other students to respond to. Share this site on your class website or in your class newsletter so ESL parents can benefit from understanding telephone conversation better, too. Teachers of world languages may wish to use this site as a model to create similar information for their students of French, German, Spanish, and other world languages. Special ed teachers working on life skills will find these phone skills helpful, as well.

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Inspired Beginners Spanish Podcast - Ben Curtis and Marina Diez

Grades
5 to 12
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This language-rich website features podcasts spoken using British English. The podcasts review the previous episode, explain new English vocabulary, discuss the subject in English,...more
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This language-rich website features podcasts spoken using British English. The podcasts review the previous episode, explain new English vocabulary, discuss the subject in English, and then present the Spanish language podcast. Be aware that clicking to play a podcast will start a long pause as the podcast downloads to your computer, and it may appear that noting is happening! The subjects are of high interest for students. The name is somewhat of a misnomer, though, since people with no knowledge of Spanish might be a bit overwhelmed by the language used. Unfortunately, accompanying worksheets with complete transcripts are not free, and there is no text available elsewhere. There are a few other free worksheets available under the About link (see resources). Listening options include listening on your computer, iPod, or mp3 player as podcasts.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This site includes tools for blog users to interact (in English or Spanish). Any visitor can comment on the posts and podcasts or participate in Forums. There is also a link to a sister blog on Spanish culture. Check your school policies on students posting comments, etc. to the web and whether they are permitted to do so anonymously and/or with name or initials.

This site requires Quicktime. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): podcasts (55), spanish (109), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

This site is a treasure trove for Spanish teachers. It also provides a way for your ESL and ELL students to share their language and culture as the focus of a lesson, perhaps as you study other cultures. Have the ESL or ELL students and native English speakers work on understanding podcasts together. They can discuss what they understood and what they did not. You might have your Spanish speakers write out the dialogue and vocabulary selections, but be sure to have a knowledgeable adult check the Spanish before using it with your students.

To alleviate safety concerns, you might want to create a simple class policy (e.g. initials only) and obtain parent permission before inviting your class to participate in the blog, since you will not be able to monitor their submissions. The site does moderate to prevent "bad" comments from appearing online, but you do not control this moderation. ALL blog comments require an email address (kept hidden). If safety and school policy concerns limit student access, use the site as a whole-class activity and selectively choose portions for students to use. You can assign DIRECT links to podcasts by right-clicking the "Audio: download" link and copying the URL that shows in "Properties," ex. http://media.libsyn.com/media/learnrealspanish/nisbeginners20_el_kindle.mp3. Students can RIGHT-click >Save target as to download and load podcast files to their mp3 players or simply keep to listen over and over at a computer.
 This resource requires PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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The Story Connection - Dianne de las Casas

Grades
2 to 6
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This website offers printable (retold) stories by Dianne de las Casas. She offers quite a collection, and adds new stories each month. The stories come from all around the world. ...more
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This website offers printable (retold) stories by Dianne de las Casas. She offers quite a collection, and adds new stories each month. The stories come from all around the world. Other offerings on the site include holiday stories, fingerplays, play scripts, activities to do with stories, and puzzles. Don't forget to check out the extensive suggestions under Resources such as Story telling games. These help teachers and parents know what to do after they've all read a story together. Teachers, school librarians, and even parents can sign up for a free monthly newsletter about using stories in education; The Story Connection Express. This site requires Flash and Adobe Acrobat. You can get both from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

In the Classroom

Use the activities in class after reading one of her stories from a country you have represented among your ESL or ELL students. Have your students write their own story activity suggestions after you have used a few of Dianne's. Be sure to include this link on your class website and in your letter home to parents. Suggest that they read just one short story and find accompanying activities for the family to do.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Literactive - Entertainment & Information Industries Ltd

Grades
K to 3
1 Favorites 0  Comments
This site assists beginning readers by providing screen sized, illustrated stories with limited rhyming vocabulary. You are required to go through a free registration. You can play...more
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This site assists beginning readers by providing screen sized, illustrated stories with limited rhyming vocabulary. You are required to go through a free registration. You can play rhyming games with the newly-learned words. The site also has a sections of stories for ESL and ELL students, guided reading for kindergarten students, downloadable traditional picture books, e-poetry, and many learning activities! Some of the topics of the learning activities include Match the Sounds, Sequence Game, and several others. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): guided reading (45)

In the Classroom

Provide this link in your class newsletter and on your class website, so parents can reinforce the reading skills you are teaching their children in school. Share the activities link with your students on your interactive whiteboard or projector. Then have your students explore the activities with a partner on your classroom computer center or cluster.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Lil' Fingers - David Lumerman

Grades
K to 1
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Little fingers meet big fun at this free interactive website. Designed with toddlers and Kindergarten kiddies in mind, this site offers storybooks, interactive games, holiday activities,...more
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Little fingers meet big fun at this free interactive website. Designed with toddlers and Kindergarten kiddies in mind, this site offers storybooks, interactive games, holiday activities, coloring sheets, and much more. There are even interactive games for ABCs and telling time. Bright colors, quick loading pages, short stories, and extra large buttons (arrows) are just some of the features that make this site easy to use. When viewing the storybooks, just make sure you are not too hasty to click. Clicking your mouse too early may mean missing out of some of the animation. Warning - at the end of each storybook, a recommended book is featured. If you click on that recommendation, you will be taken to a retail book site. This site requires Flash. You can get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): holidays (151), time (139)

In the Classroom

Primary teachers, make simple printed text from the storybooks to reinforce the reading skills. Use the holiday games to liven up your computer centers. During Kindergarten Open House, set up a computer center with the storybooks--ready for parent/child interaction. ESL and ELL teachers will appreciate the simplicity of the text for their beginning English-learner students.

Be sure to provide this link in your class newsletter or on your class website.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Chuala - Chuala

Grades
4 to 12
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This site allows students to practice pronunciation in 10 languages, including English, European languages, and Mandarin Chinese. After a free registration, you can put in a search...more
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This site allows students to practice pronunciation in 10 languages, including English, European languages, and Mandarin Chinese. After a free registration, you can put in a search term for lessons. It's a bit difficult to guess search items, so looking at the entire list in any given language is a good way to start. Currently, English has 298 items. You are also able to contribute lessons.

One helpful document is the Chuala inventory which allows instructors to quiz ESL students on their pronunciation by having them pronounce 144 distinct items. They can then search the lessons for practice, recording, and making comparisons on these phonemes.

Some of the lessons take the whole language approach and appear as dialogs, discussions, or Q and A. Most, however, have students practice distinct sounds only, with no context. One advantage of the program is that you can select lessons by distinct language area. For example, American English students can hear examples of American English rather than British English. You can also request that other lessons be created. This site requires Flash and enabled Javascript. Get Flash and directions on enabling Javascript from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): chinese (50), pronunciation (44)

In the Classroom

Set ESL/ELL or speech/language students up with this site on a classroom computer cluster or in a lab to practice phonemes they can't hear or pronounce (see safety notice below). You MUST have a microphone or use a computer that has one built in. Use the inventory to make initial ESL/ELL evaluations as well as periodic progress checks. Students may like the site so much they'll want to practice at home.

This website could be very useful to French, Spanish, and German teachers (or teachers of other world languages). Use this site to learn new vocabulary and improve pronunciation of world languages.

Safety concern: This site requires FREE membership to use the audio tools and access content. Membership includes social networking tools, such as "friends" and "messages," and requires an email address. You may want to set up a single class account for in-school use, entering your "extra" email address to avoid unsafe use of the site by your adventurous students. If you KNOW how they are logging in (with your account), you can remove any friends or other unauthorized contacts. The problem with this approach is that you will not know which student has done what. If you do permit individual user accounts (according to your school's policies, of course), have parents and students sign an agreement that spells out permissible behavior and consequences -- and get your principal's OK!
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Story Nory: Kids Audio Stories - Blog Relations: Matthew Lynn and Hugh Fraser

Grades
K to 5
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This site offers over 100 audio stories, downloadable to mp3 players or playable from your computer using Flash. It also has constant updates, news about new offerings, and several...more
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This site offers over 100 audio stories, downloadable to mp3 players or playable from your computer using Flash. It also has constant updates, news about new offerings, and several complete books available as well. The stories available include animal stories, poems, fables and legends, modern stories, and some holiday stories. A few stories include an animated video. The text of the story is included, so students can follow along during the audio reading The audio quality is high, so enthusiasm will be contagious! This site does have some small unobtrusive advertisements. Be aware - this website is a blog, so students can add comments about a story (using first names only), if this is within your school policies. This site requires Flash. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): folktales (59), listening (91)

In the Classroom

Beginning readers will enjoy this site as much as more capable readers, listening intently to the high quality presentation. Share this site with parents in your class newsletter or from your teacher web page. Use it also when you read Alice in Wonderland, and when you teach the concept of "series" stories (try the "Bertie" stories). ESL/ ELL and learning support students will benefit from reading and hearingstories at the same time. Project the story on an interactive whiteboard or projector with small groups of readers so students can follow along and even highlight words during the audio reading.
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Picture Prompt Story Starters - Story-It

Grades
K to 4
1 Favorites 0  Comments
This page offers a series of illustrated, printable story prompts. Printing in portrait or landscape for larger spaces between the lines. Another option includes a black and ...more
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This page offers a series of illustrated, printable story prompts. Printing in portrait or landscape for larger spaces between the lines. Another option includes a black and white drawing that the children can color before or after writing the story. The pages also contain a box to write a word list for help spelling more difficult words. The story topics include many seasonal and holiday offerings, as well. Some of this site requires FLASH. Get it from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): vocabulary (324), vocabulary development (124), writing (367)

In the Classroom

Use this site with beginning readers, beginning writers, and ESL students to reinforce the skill you are teaching and to show connections between reading and writing. Make it available for your active writers to choose their own prompts, too, or for parents to use at home during breaks. Special ed teachers will appreciate these prompts as a way to promote language development. Use the pictures to record students' vocabulary on the lines below as they "tell you about the picture."
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Kindersay - Webmosis

Grades
K to 1
1 Favorites 0  Comments
  
Although it describes itself as being "preschool" site, Kindersay is a great web site for primary readers, ESL/ELL students and special education students working on speech and language....more
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Although it describes itself as being "preschool" site, Kindersay is a great web site for primary readers, ESL/ELL students and special education students working on speech and language. This site offers simple, easy-to-use activities such as letter recognition and vocabulary. Each letter and vocabulary word has a corresponding video with correct pronunciation. The Favorites tab provides an opportunity to create differentiated instruction for each child. Registration is free!

tag(s): alphabet (89), vocabulary (324)

In the Classroom

Add the link to a classroom homepage for center-time or for parents and children to practice at home. Use a different activity category each day or week with ESL/ELL or special ed students to build vocabulary. Then use a digital camera to create some pictures and sound files of your own for new categories using PowerPoint slides or the online "My Family" area.

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English for All - US Department of Education

Grades
7 to 12
0 Favorites 0  Comments
    
This multimedia online program allows teachers to set up English classes for ESL/ELL students from all language groups. The website includes online stories, accompanying print materials,...more
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This multimedia online program allows teachers to set up English classes for ESL/ELL students from all language groups. The website includes online stories, accompanying print materials, videos, and optional videos and CDs for purchase. Teachers can set up this FREE program (including 20 lessons) for unlimited classes. Each lesson has vocabulary, a video, support work, listening requirements, grammar, and a test. Students go through a series of activities; results are reported back to the teacher. Videos are available as downloads or podcasts. Teacher guides are provided. This site requires Flash and Quicktime. Get them from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..

tag(s): pronunciation (44)

In the Classroom

Be sure to take advantage of this FREE website to help your ESL/ELL students improve their English. For older students, this program can help them prepare for the world of work. Some parents of ESL/ELL students may even appreciate the resource for their own learning. ESL teachers may want to share the site at an open house or conferences as a non-invasive way of drawing parents into the process.
  This resource requires Adobe Flash and PDF reader software like Adobe Acrobat.

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Robert Munsch Virtual Story Room - Robert Munsch

Grades
K to 5
6 Favorites 0  Comments
 
Beloved children's author Robert Munsch offers many of his stories/books here in audio format. All students, including ESL students, will enjoy hearing these stories as they read along....more
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Beloved children's author Robert Munsch offers many of his stories/books here in audio format. All students, including ESL students, will enjoy hearing these stories as they read along. Users must have the capability of listening through an MP3 player.

tag(s): folktales (59), listening (91)

In the Classroom

Set up these recordings as a center with the book at hand and headphones for the students (see download tips below). Or play them for the whole class with your speakers turned up after lunch or at the end of the day. Include the link on your teacher web page and newsletter for parents, as well. You must first click that you agree to the terms of use, then DOWNLOAD the files (SAVE to your desktop for easy access and delete after use). The "Terms of Use" appear in a pop-up, so make sure your pop-up blockers is turned off. The files will play with Windows Media Player, iTunes, or Real Player, whichever you have.

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ABC Toon Center - Jack Armstrong: ABC Learning Time

Grades
K to 4
3 Favorites 0  Comments
 
This interactive site, hosted by Hoot and Kat, features 25 games and story links. Some games are more educational than others. Hoot's Story Time and Learn with Kat ...more
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This interactive site, hosted by Hoot and Kat, features 25 games and story links. Some games are more educational than others. Hoot's Story Time and Learn with Kat areas are a good place to start. Players may solve special challenges that allow them to become a Junior Ranger. Once a Junior Ranger, they will be invited into a secret clubhouse which contains more surprises and games. What a fun, literacy-based site to use when rewarding good learning! This site provides hours of safe fun for our primary and elementary learners. ESL teachers will be pleased to know that the homepage can be read in five different languages.

tag(s): alphabet (89), literacy (106)

In the Classroom

Share this site with parents via a link from your teacher web page for safe learning fun at home or use specific literacy activities as a center in your primary classroom.
 This resource requires Adobe Flash.

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Language Arts Online Clips - Thinkport

Grades
1 to 6
10 Favorites 0  Comments
  
This wonderful site has an extensive list of free video clips of favorite children's books, author interviews, and author documentaries. Users can open them with Windows Media or Real...more
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This wonderful site has an extensive list of free video clips of favorite children's books, author interviews, and author documentaries. Users can open them with Windows Media or Real Player (the listings tell which one is needed). Some clips offer both options. Get the plug ins from the TeachersFirst Toolbox page..This site MUST have a high speed connection! It can be slow to load during "peak" times (11 a.m. to 2 pm Eastern time in the U.S.). Be patient while clips download, even on a peppy network. While the videos are downloading, you may not think anything is happening. TURN OFF your pop-up blocker (including the ones built into the Google and Yahoo toolbars) so you can see the video pop-up windows.

tag(s): interviews (17)

In the Classroom

Preview the video clips before recommending them to students or using in class, since the quality of video and audio varies significantly. None is designed for full screen projection, though some will project about half-screen. Share a partial video with the class or as a center to inspire children to read a book or allow them to watch videos after they have read books. (A Dark, Dark tale would be great for Halloween week). Remember to turn up speakers for group viewing or provide headphones at your center. If you are ready to try podcasting, use these dramatic readings as models for students to record some of their favorite selections as a podcast (and possibly illustrate with student artwork). Share this link with parents on your web page or in your newsletter to encourage reading at home. Most of the books will be in our school library, so students can follow along. School librarians should know about this site as well! ESL students and weaker readers always benefit from listening to different voices read the same story as they follow along.

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