Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

The Best Sites For Learning About “Cool” Cars (& Designing Your Own!)

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'Coolest car ever' photo (c) 2008, mapeye - license: http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0/

To have a little fun, and to cultivate some interest  — especially from my young male students — I thought a “The Best…” list on “cool” cars might be engaging.

I’m planning on having my English Language Learner students look through these accessible sites, identify which ones they found particularly intriguing, and explain why — in writing and verbally.  In addition, they can design their own cars and describe them.  The sites are listed in two separate sections — the photos, and the design sites.

It’s just a light exercise to do some day, probably after a day of taking standardized tests…

Here are my picks for The Best Sites For Learning About “Cool” Cars (& Designing Your Own!):

IMAGES OF COOL CARS:

Here’s a Time Magazine slideshow about The Plane That Drives.

Discovery has both a slideshow and a video about a flying car.

MSNBC has a video about an underwater car.

Breaking News English has an activity about the same car, and provides audio support for the text.

Ten Things You Should Know About The World’s Cheapest Car is a slideshow from TIME Magazine.

MSNBC has video about the Nano, the world’s cheapest car that sells for $2,000.

Not really a car, but I’m including a slideshow about motorcycles from Time Magazine — The Evolution of Harley-Davidson.

Here are three accessible resources on the new U.S. Presidential limousine:

You can see photos and a diagram of the new limousine created for Obama, and it’s pretty impressive, indeed.

Here’s another interactive graphic about the limousine.

Breaking News English has a good online lesson on the new Presidential limousine that will be unveiled on Inauguration Day.

The Shape Of Alternative Power is a slideshow from The New York Times featuring some pretty cool-looking cars not powered by gasoline.

Take a look at this slideshow of the all-electric Tesla Roadster.

Flash In The Pan is a New York Times slideshow of the recent New York Auto Show.

Here’s a CNBC slideshow of the 2009 Detroit Auto Show.

Here’s a CNN slideshow of the latest “concept cars” — cars the auto companies have on the drawing board for the far-future.

CNN also has a slideshow of cars that have been in science fiction movies. The site also lets you rank them and compare your choices with those of others.

Cars Of The Future is another engaging slideshow.

Here’s an online exhibit of Lowrider cars.

Forbes Magazine has a slideshow showing the world’s most expensive cars.

Which Cars Are Most Expensive? is another slideshow.

Here’s an audio slideshow from the San Jose Mercury News about the Tesla, the electric roadster.

I don’t know if I would call the cars in this next slideshow “cool,” but they are Very, Very, Very Small Cars.

The Boston Globe’s The Big Picture has a series of images of Formula One racing cars.

Take a look at 12 Of The World’s Strangest Vehicles.

Here are 15 of the World’s Strangest Limousines.

CNN has a video about flying cars.

Eye-Popping Car Designs is a slideshow from LIFE Magazine.

Here are some Insanely Decorated Cars.

Check-out 12 Cool and Unusual Limousines.

“40 Wild and Wicked Art Cars” has some pretty wild images.

Car Design As High Style, 1930 to 1965 is a slideshow from TIME Magazine.

Word’s Smallest Cars has text, photos, and videos about…very small cars.

The Maverick Flying Car is one weird contraption.

The New York Times has a video of a convention of “tiny car” enthusiasts.

Concept cars in pictures is a slideshow from The Telegraph.

“Car That Runs On Thin Air” is a video from CNN about a care that runs on….air.

How cars of the future were perceived in 1948 is a fun video from…1948. It shows some pretty “interesting” looking cars.

The World’s 15 Ugliest Cars is a slideshow presentation from CBS News.

Amphibious vehicle made from a lawnmower and boat is a video from CBS News.

50 outrageous cars is a CBS News slideshow.

New record for world’s fastest toilet on wheels is from The BBC.

DESIGNING YOUR OWN COOL CARS:

Create A Ride lets you design your own race car.  Boys in particular will love it.  You can save your design with a special number, but it doesn’t provide you with a unique url address.  So to access it again you just have to go to the site and type in the the number.  Students can learn some vocabulary and write about their car.

It’s not a car, but Create the Honda lets you design the motorcycle of your dreams. Be sure to click on “Europe” to get to the English version of the site

In a related application, users can create their own Race-Car Driver and have him/her “say” a message using the site’s text-to-speech feature.

As always, feedback is welcome.

If you found this post useful, you might want to look at all the previous over 200 “The Best…” lists and also consider subscribing to this blog for free.

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Author: Larry Ferlazzo

I'm a high school teacher in Sacramento, CA.

2 Comments

  1. Larry, I am a 51 year old woman with almost no interest in cars, and that Create a Ride game is very entertaining!

    I’m going to go design a motorcycle!

  2. Larry,
    Thanks for the interesting sites. It’s awesome for driver education students. Bravo!

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