Elizabeth Claire's E-News

June 2012 E-News from Elizabeth Claire

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Contents of the June E-News:

Suggestions for students over the summer

Save money, order now. Prices increase July 1

INSIDE June's Easy English NEWS

Suggestions for students over the summer

ESL students need to keep up their rate of progress over the summer, so if there aren't classes with the wonderful YOU and no Easy English NEWS, what are they to do? In most other countries, there are no such long breaks...the teachers get a month off, but the students are piled high with work and assignments.

I won't go that far...and you might not be their teacher next September and don't want materials to correct to start out your fall term. But students are eager to do something other than relax and may ask for guidance. Here are some things to suggest to them.

1. Try the library, see if there are ESL or Literacy Volunteers or a group. Get a library card. Take out children's picture books to read; ask the librarian for suggested readings that would be at an appropriate level. Read in English every day, whether it's newspapers, magazines, books, or the backs of cereal boxes. Borrow movies and CD's. Read in your own language. Read to your children in either language. Keep a journal to list titles and authors you have read.

2. If there is a summer school program in your district, suggest the student take a course he or she has already passed in her or his native country...algebra, biology, world history...but this time, learn it in English. Or take a course in arts and crafts, cooking, painting, yoga, car repair, volleyball, anything. Following directions and talking about concrete matters makes English more comprehensible. Content courses are often more useful for intermediate and advanced students than English courses.

3. For middle school and high school students: See if you can get the textbook that will be used in the science or social studies course they will be in in the fall. Let them start the monumental task of reading it. If you can find out what novels or short stories they will be required to read, suggest they get those books and read them over the summer to get a good start. Suggest they read about those topics in their native language to help them prepare.

4. Buy or rent a movie in English that has subtitles in their own language. Watch five minute clips of it at a time, and repeat, first with the subtitles, then without the subtitles. Repeat as needed to "slow down the language" so the words in English are distinct, and there is an understanding of the dialogue. Progress to the next five minute clip. (I prefer using VHS for this, but not all new TVs or VCRs still have VHS capability). If they ask for suggestions, suggest classics such as The Wizard of Oz, The Sound of Music, Walt Disney's Sleeping Beauty, Snow White, or any of your favorites that (important) have clear, unaccented English dialog. Songs are a plus. A single movie can serve as an inexpensive textbook for the whole summer.

5. Give students a list of places to go and things to see in your neighborhood or community. Have them go on a personal scavenger hunt: Locate the fire department, post office, police station, a gas station, super market, pet store, hardware store...etc. Who is the council person who represents their community in the town or city council? Who is their representative in Congress? Who are their state senators and assemblymen? Where are their offices?

6. If you are on the East Coast or Gulf Coast, have students download and print, or read online the booklet, "Hurricane Safety in Simple English" free at my website.

7. Suggest they watch the news on TV in English after hearing it in their native language, or after reading their native language newspapers Give a list of things to watch for in the news: announcements of third party candidates for president, choices of vice presidential candidates, weather reports of hurricanes, and of course the competiton in the Olympics.

8. Encourage students to reach out and speak to others in English. Keep a journal of words they overhear in the street, on the bus, at the supermarket, etc. If they usually shop in their own ethnic stores, challenge them to shop in a different store, try different brands of food, and ask questions. At the supermarket, ask others to explain what products you cook some new vegetable, how do you tell if something is ripe? etc.

Save money, order now. Prices increase July 1

New prices will go into effect July 1, but hurry....if you place your order for next year before June 30, you will get this year's prices for next year's subscriptions. If for school budget reasons, your program can't order before July 1, call us by June 30, and we will "lock in" your cost at this year's prices for another month. Just be sure to note that on the order form when it gets to us.

Inside Easy English NEWS for June 2012

The Summer Olympic Games

Life in the U.S.A. Starting your own business What questions do you need to ask yourself and others? How do you go about getting help? What are the opportunities and risks?

Events in June covered in Easy English NEWS:
    • Flag Day (plus the Star-Spangled Banner)
    • Summer safety
    • The Fourth of July
    • Father's Day
    • Ramadan
    • Political Conventions
Dr. Ali: Ringing in the Ears

Ask a Speech Coach: ch/sh distinction and practice

America the Beautiful: Birds of America

Heroes and History: Nathan Hale: American Spy and Hero

Plus our regular features: This Is Your Page (readers' stories),  Funny Stuff, Idioms, the Crossword Puzzle, Let's Talk About It, and Word Help

NOTE: If you ever receive your package of newspapers without the Teacher's Guide enclosed, or if you misplace yours, you can find the current guide posted at the website. June Teacher's Guide

At the website:

June Teacher's Guide and Quizzes

June Short Answer Questions

Six cloze exercises for June's Easy English NEWS plus "Which Word Does Not Belong?" quiz

FREE materials for downloading and classroom use

Hurricane Safety in Simple English

Click here to go to my website:

(If you can't locate what you are looking for by checking the tabs, please use the search function.)

Elizabeth Claire

© Elizabeth Claire 2012.

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