Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

November 7, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo

The Best Ways To Use Mistakes When Teaching Writing


This is sort of an odd “The Best…” list.

I’ve written a lot in this blog and in my books about using student mistakes as an opportunity and not as a problem, and have an extremely long The Best Posts, Articles & Videos About Learning From Mistakes & Failures list.

This list, however, has a different take on the subject. I’ve only got three related resources now, but I’m hoping readers will contribute more.

You’ll see what I’m looking for after looking at these sites:

27 Reasons Why You Should Always Proofread is from BuzzFeed.

Wonderful Video: Brazilian Kids Learn English By Correcting Tweets From Celebrities

The Best Collections Of Funny Signs (For Use In English Classes)

In other words, I’m looking for more resources that, in a funny (though not cruel) way, highlight errors that have been made in language usage. Students can then identify the mistakes, fix them, and learn along the way — and, with a little luck, have fun doing it!

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July 11, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo

Good Grammar & Vocabulary Interactive Exercises

I’ve previously posted about the excellent British Council Learn English Teens website. Today, I’ll like to particularly highlight two of its features.

Grammar Snacks are a series of animations about…grammar, followed by interactive exercises. I’m adding it to The Best Sites For Grammar Practice.

Vocabulary Exercises contains a lot of thematic interactives on….vocabulary. I’m adding it to The Best Sites Where ELL’s Can Learn Vocabulary.

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May 14, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo

Important Research On Grammar Instruction

Grammar Errors? The Brain Detects Them Even When You Are Unaware is a report from Science Daily on new research related to grammar.

I’ve got to admit I’m still not sure I understand the description of the researcher’s experiment, but I do like their conclusion:

It may be time to reconsider some teaching strategies, especially how adults are taught a second language, said Neville, a member of the UO’s Institute of Neuroscience and director of the UO’s Brain Development Lab.

Children, she noted, often pick up grammar rules implicitly through routine daily interactions with parents or peers, simply hearing and processing new words and their usage before any formal instruction. She likened such learning to “Jabberwocky,” the nonsense poem introduced by writer Lewis Carroll in 1871 in “Through the Looking Glass,” where Alice discovers a book in an unrecognizable language that turns out to be written inversely and readable in a mirror.

For a second language, she said, “Teach grammatical rules implicitly, without any semantics at all, like with jabberwocky. Get them to listen to jabberwocky, like a child does.”

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May 1, 2013
by Larry Ferlazzo

A Beginning List Of The Best Sites For ELLs To Learn About The Pacific Region

March 22, 2012
by Larry Ferlazzo

“No Red Ink” Is A New Grammar Site

As regular readers know, I don’t spend a whole lot of time on direct grammar instruction (you can read more at The Best Sites For Grammar Practice). Sometimes, though, it can be useful and/or students can want grammar reinforcement opportunities, which is why I created that “The Best…” list.

Noredink is a new site created by a teacher for students to practice grammar using interactive exercises. It’s a nicely designed site, and students can pick choose the topics that they are most interested in — the NFL, NBA, specific TV shows, etc.

I think there are plenty of other sites on “The Best…” list I mentioned earlier in this post that are more expansive and don’t require registration, so I’m not going to add Noredink to that list.

However, since teachers can create virtual classrooms of their students there, I will add it to The Best Sites That Students Can Use Independently And Let Teachers Check On Progress.

Note that the site says that it’s free now. If and when they start charging, though, I’ll remove it from that list.

Thanks to Mashable for the tip.

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