ESL/ EFL Site Forecast for 2011

I’m curious to see if anyone reading this will suggest a website we should all keep our eyes on in the future. Do you anticipate the growth of any particular resource or contributions of an individual content creator? Let me share a few sources that I predict will develop some good materials for ESL/ EFL teachers and students in 2011. If you can, please add to the list.

In no particular order, here they are.

1.  Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab.  This is already a well-known site in the ESL/ EFL community. However, I anticipate much growth in 2011. First off, Randall promises to make his materials accessible for use on portable devices, such as iPhones. Second, I appreciate his collection of Video Snapshots because they offer lessons on both language and culture. Yet another project I find interesting is Randall’s Multimedia Language Activities. It shows his willingness to experiment with other online tools, namely Voice Thread, to enage more of the learner.

2.  Voice of America. This is another big name, but perhaps not so many are aware of The Classroom, which offers a growing collection of multimedia lessons based on readings that range from American Life & Culture to Science & Technology. The activities that follow each article are consistent in format and pedagogically sound. Explore VOA’s virtual classroom and you’ll also find additional activities for all levels, from grammar practice to mini lessons on common idioms.

3. EnglishCafe. There are good reasons why I often collaborate with this site. I truly like the spirit of community and the willingness of all the teachers to support one another. Also, I have observed and participated in the site’s growth over the past couple of years. More and more talented teachers are joining, and that means more free resources are being developed for ESL/ EFL learners. Check out the blog posts and lessons published by Paul Meier, for example. When students ask if I have materials on a certain pronunciation topic and I don’t, I often look to see if Paul does. Then I recommend it. I do the same with the materials created by Kenneth Beare regarding grammar. When I receive requests for online lessons and I’m not available, I often steer students in the direction of fellow TESOL member, Smiling7 (aka Holly). In short, EnglishCafe is a growing community, and in 2011 I expect to see dozens of contributions to the already sizable collection of blog posts and interactive lessons created by qualified teachers around the world.

4. English with Jennifer. You didn’t think I’d miss the chance to put my own website on this list, did you? Of course, I’m excited about how it will develop in 2011! The site was launched in Februrary of this year, and over the past several months I’ve been able to consolidate my online work and make it easier for users to find resources they need. The site features projects I’ve created in response to popular demands for help with writing (Improve Your Writing), vocabulary (Word of the Day and Everday Vocabulary), listening and speaking skills (The Jim & Jen Show), and self-study (Study Tips). I hope to continue working on all these projects as time allows, and I suspect that new ideas will come about in response to other requests for online resources.

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13 Comments on “ESL/ EFL Site Forecast for 2011”

  1. Alfredo Says:

    Thank you for posting this list.

    I was aware of all the websites that you mentioned except for the resource from the Voice of America. The site looks like it is laid out really well and has really interesting content.

    One site to keep your eye on in 2011 is OnTargetEnglish.com. I have been helping to create and present English video lessons on this site.

    I’ve been quite impressed by the spirit of synergy, as you have mentioned, in the online English-teaching community, and I look forward to greater activity in that community in 2011.

    Thank you for all that you have offered online. I enjoy your YouTube videos, and you have an extraordinarily helpful site here.

    • englishwithjennifer Says:

      Thanks for sharing this website, Alfredo. The introductory video itself looks great. Good energy and good presentation. You and Holly make a good team. I’ll keep my eye on you and your work. :)

      Best wishes for a wonderful new year!
      Jennifer


  2. I would like to follow this blog in way, is that possible?
    Regards!

  3. Deb Chittur Says:

    I would not put my own website in the category of those above, but I have shared it with 5-12 teachers and they have found it useful with their students. I have picked the highest-interest activities on the web that my students can do independently and organized them by level. There is also a teacher page.

    Jennifer, if you take a look at it I will be happy to pieces of your website or your whole website wherever you think it’s appropriate.

    Deb Chittur

    • englishwithjennifer Says:

      Hello Deb,

      I took a quick look at the useful collection of original and “linked” activities. I think the strength is in your niche. It’s so true that tweens need material that’s created with their needs in mind. They can’t always use the same materials that adult learners or very young ELLs use. My vocabulary pages may be age-appropriate (see Everyday Vocabulary and Word of the Day). If you think the presentation and content suit the curriculum for that age group, feel free to use the links. Good luck in developing the site.

      Best,
      Jennifer

  4. Deb Chittur Says:

    Oh, BTW the URL is: ecomputerlab.com

  5. Julia Says:

    EFL Classroom 2.0 a Ning site

  6. Quora Says:

    What are good tools for learning English as a second language?…

    I know it’s slightly cheesy to plug my colleagues’ stuff, but Voice of America genuinely has a bunch of really useful resources. VOA “Special English” content is great for people who are trying to practice their English – these are articles and aud…


  7. Hi Jennifer, forgive me for blowing my own horn but I’d like to invite you and your readers to keep your collective eye on English Attack! (www.english-attack.com), a new 100% entertainment- and social networking focused site dedicated to increasing and enhancing exposure to English for the digital generation. We are currently in Beta with 18,000 test users worldwide, and will soon launch our definitive version. We’ve had great encouragement and feedback from EFL and ESL teachers around the world, many of whom are already using it in class or as homework for their learners. You’re all welcome to check it out!

    • englishwithjennifer Says:

      Go ahead and blow that horn. :) It’s nice to learn about new resources on the web. I think it’s necessary and useful to explore forms of edutainment. Congrats on the initial feedback and good luck moving forward.


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