Effortless English Archives

Automatic English For The People

Friday, February 03, 2006

English Podcasts for Students

by AJ

Just found a new site called English Feed. They do regular podcasts (audio) for English learners. Currently they've got a few on the topic of Groundhog Day. The blog contains scripts for each podcast, plus explanations of key words. This is the sort of thing I was hoping to do with my "Effortless English Class"... but was too busy/lazy to! Luckily, more dedicated people are doing a very good job.....

Another great source of English audio for students is English Conversations. They've got a number of recorded interviews. The blog has transcripts for each podcast... with hyperlinks scattered throughout for further reading. Currently they have a couple of interviews featuring my old students at Thammasat and Aaron's students in Kyoto. What I love about this site is that they (Aaron and Mark) use lots of natural conversations.... they aren't reading from a script.

Im sure there are more such resources on the web (please give your recommendations in comments). These are very powerful tools for students.... tools that I have underutilized. As teachers, one service we can perform is to direct our students to these self-study sites. This will help them become more autonomous learners.

For my part, I think Ill first use a few of these podcasts (with transcripts) in my class.... get the students familiar with the format. Then I may "assign" a podcast as homework.... to nudge them to the sites in their free time. In the end, I hope they will continue to use these resources on their own. In particular, I will encourage them to download the podcasts and listen to them often... to get plenty of repetition and thus thoroughly acquire the language used.