I found “gold” while reading a recent post in the Readable Blog.
I learned about the online support sites for three Cambridge EFL/ESL textbook series — Interchange, Touchstone, and Connect.
There are a ton of excellent activities on these sites, I especially like the What Do You Hear? and What Do You See? games (and there are probably well over one hundred of these alone).
I’m actually still in the process of placing the links to these great sites on my webpages. Some will go on the English Themes for Beginners under Favorite Sites while others will go on my English For Beginners page under Vocabulary.
Yes, they look interesting. The “what do you see game” I tried showed parts of the body. I would have liked to see “foot” and “leg” both in there, as Japanese does not distinguish well between these two, similarly “toe” and “finger”. That’s what you get when a major publisher tries to cover all the bases (i.e. make a book that will sell equally well in any country).
I’m using Touchstone 2, and I was eager to try the support materials out, but am a little disappointed: there could be more listening and less reading. Online listening materials and quizzes are a real pain to create and upload so that would have been something very useful CUP could do. And Touchstone 2, Unit 2 “Interests” has an activity called “types of music”, but it’s just a game of hangman, only not as interesting. 🙁
I definitely agree that the listening exercises are the most useful to students. Those are the ones I highlighted on my “Favorite Sites” section of my website. Between Interchange and Connect, there are quite a few “What Do You Hear” exercises. I think there are fewer on Touchstone. Your point is well-taken that one size does not fit all….
The best listening exercises I’ve seen from a textbook publisher are “Phrase Builder” and “Phrase Bank” from Oxford. You can find links to them on my Favorite Sites (if you don’t have them already):
And thanks for commenting in my blog!
Thanks for mentioning Readable Blog!