Larry Ferlazzo’s Websites of the Day…

…For Teaching ELL, ESL, & EFL

August 9, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

“Time-Travel” With Merriam-Webster To Learn When Words Entered The English Language

Time-Traveler is a feature at the Merriam-Webster Dictionary site that lets you choose any date going back to 1500. Then, it will show you what words entered the English language during that year.

It’s pretty neat, and The New Yorker just ran a column about it, Time-Travelling with Merriam-Webster’s Dictionary.

You might also be interested in:

The Best “Words Of The Year” Features For 2016

The Best Posts To Help Understand Google’s New “Books Ngram Viewer”

August 6, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

Eight Free Downloadable Children’s Books In Khmer – More On The Way (Maybe In Other Languages, Too)

The Asia Foundation’s Let’s Read Initiative has just released eight freely downloadable storybooks in the Khmer language (spoken by Cambodians). You can download them here – click on “Books.”

As ELL teachers know, there are many benefits to having students read in their home language, as well as in English (see The Best Resources Explaining Why We Need To Support The Home Language Of ELLs).

You can read more about the books project at the NBC News story, Volunteers Work to Give Kids in Cambodia Books in Their ‘Mother Tongue.’

Here’s an interesting video on the project, too. I’m hoping they replicate it in others Asian countries….

I’m adding this info to The Best Sources For Free & Accessible Printable Books.

June 27, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

A New NY Times “Copy-Edit This” Interactive Just Published

The New York Times has been periodically publishing a neat ten-question interactive challenging readers to identify grammar errors that have appeared in The Times.

It’s called “Copy-Edit This.”  It’s too hard for most ELLs, and some of the questions are even too hard for me!  But they might have some use in the classroom.

They just published Copy edit This! No. 7 Quiz.

Unfortunately, they don’t appear to have tagged them in any way so you can access them at in one place.  However, I’ve got you covered!

I’ve been collecting all the links at Excellent Series Of Interactive “Copy-Edit This!” Quizzes In New York Times.

April 27, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

NY Times Learning Network Announces Their Fabulous Annual Summer Reading Contest

The New York Times Learning Network has just announced their annual fantastic summer reading contest.

You can read all about it at The Eighth Annual New York Times Summer Reading Contest.

Simply put, students can read whatever they want on The Times site and write about it, and then the Network publishes the best contributions each week.

Anything that can help reduce the “Summer Slide” is appreciated!

I have a ton of resources on the topic at The Best Resources On The “Summer Slide.”

You might be particularly interested in one of the posts on that list, Updated: Here Are The Sites I’m Using For My Summer School “Virtual Classroom.”

March 16, 2017
by Larry Ferlazzo

Help Me Create A Series Of Lessons On “Reading As An Act Of Rebellion” (Or Let Me Know If You Have One Already)

Today’s New York Times has a column headlined Books Can Take You Places Donald Trump Doesn’t Want You to Go.

I don’t think it’s particularly good – it’s more of an example of how to use a lot of words to sound fancy without having much substance. But it did remind me of a study that showed students were more likely to eat healthy foods if they viewed it as an act of rebellion against the food industry (see Study: Teens are more likely to eat healthy if they think it’s rebellious).

So I began to wonder if it couldn’t hurt to do a series of lessons on reading as an act of rebellion…

Obviously, excerpts from Fahrenheit 451 could be used. There are lots of online resources about real-life book burning (here’s a timeline a series of photos and a history of book burning).

I found this article in The Guardian: Reading the revolution: the book club that terrified the Angolan regime.

Of course, The Best Resources For Banned Books Week could be used, too.

I figure someone must have already created this kind of lesson, and I’m hoping you’ll read this post and share it in the comments.

I’m not thinking that it would have some kind of dramatic impact on a non-reader, but I also don’t think anything bad could come out of it.

It seems to me that Anne Frank (The Best Sites To Learn About Anne Frank) provides a ready template for a similar series on writing, but I’d also like to hear ideas on that, too…

December 24, 2016
by Larry Ferlazzo

New PBS News Hour Video: “This graphic novelist and reading ambassador tells kids to reach beyond their comfort zone”

The PBS News Hour just ran this segment.

Here’s how they describe it:

Graphic novelist Gene Luen Yang wrestled with his identity growing up, but he’s made the Chinese-American experience one of the main subjects of his critically acclaimed work. One of this year’s MacArthur Fellowship winners and the national ambassador for young people’s literature, Yang sits down with Jeffrey Brown to discuss his childhood, his love of coding and the feeling of being an outsider.

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