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Week 2

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on January 4, 2010 at 11:51:38 am

Week 2 (01/18/10): (Moderator: Mike)


  • Real English



Assignment 1

Assignment 2

Assignment 3


On Jan. 18th, or as early as possible in the week, Mike will make a short, general presentation of Real English in Elluminate or Adobe Connect. The beginning of one lesson will be used as an example showing how Real English exercises and videos work together. More precise information concerning date, time, and how to get there will be provided asap.


Assignment 1: 

Do two lessons minimum, as if you were a student.

The 2 lessons are to be chosen from the lesson core: http://www.real-english.com/new-lessons.asp

i.e., choose one lesson between 1 and 20 and another one from 24 to 80, or simply choose lessons at a level corresponding to your students' levels.


Do at least 2 (two) of these lessons:


1 - Hi


3 Alphabet & Spelling,



6-Introducing People,

7-Astrological Sign,

8a-Cardinal Numbers,

8b-Ordinal Numbers,

8c-How old...?,


8e-Phone numbers (at least 3 parts of lesson 8 count as one lesson),

10-The Jones Family,

11-Are you married?,


14-The British,

15-Can ,

16-The French,


17-The Italians,

20-Going to a place,

21 - Intro to Do and Does,

22-Continental Airlines,

23- Got/Have got/Have,

24-What do you do?,

29-Like to do-I,

30-Like to do-II,

31-How long...?,

32-Where do you live? (Flash Exercises by Birgit Ferran),

37-What are you doing?,

38-What are you wearing?,

43-Intro to Did,


55-Women (Conditionals),

80-How to learn a Second Language,

and the very recent Walk Score Lessons.


For those of you who want to experience very well-designed Dictation Exercises by our colleague Glenys Hanson, which include some of my own favorite videos, you can include one lesson from this list:


Lessons 9-Time,

12-What's the Weather like?,

19-Giving Directions,

34-Intro to doing,

40-Intro to Going to do,

48-Intro to Present Perfect,

52-Present Perfect II,

and 53-Present Perfect III.


Again, begin here at the lesson core: http://www.real-english.com/new-lessons.asp  

Choose a lesson, watch the video without subtitles, and then click on Exercise 1. Follow the instructions.


Assignment 2: 

After having gone through 2 lessons or more, write a short essay explaining how you would you use a Real English video and lesson with your students.

Evaluate the lessons in relation to your own needs. 

What works for you in your classroom?


Also, write about practical concerns, for example,


- Do you have a classroom projector hooked up to your computer? This allows you go through the lesson with your students in class and perhaps assign the unfinished exercises as homework, assuming your students have internet access at home.


- If you do not project to a classroom screen, can you share your own online computer with student(s), for very small groups or one-on-one courses?


- Would you make up your own exercises for the videos? If Yes: in all cases, or only if you had the time?


Please post your essay in the body of your message on our Yahoo Group. This is probably the easiset way to facilitate discussion between participants.


Third Assignment,

for Teachers Who Discover Hot Potatoes for the First Time via the Real English Exercises and Want to Learn More


In the Abstract to this workshop, we begin "Are you looking for resources that will save your prep time …?"

If this is your primary concern, I suggest you ignore Hot Potatoes and use an easier online exercise maker such as Ryan's www.eslvideo.com which you will discover next week, or the exercise maker implemented on ESL Café which Jennifer will speak about in Week 5.


However, it is interesting to note that compared to other Exercise Making software, Hot Potatoes allows you to create any sort of interactive exercise which you can imagine. You are not limited to multiple choice. It includes many varieties of Matching exercises, Rearranging words in several different ways to make a question or a sentence for example, Several types of  typing (writing) exercises, Fill-in the missing word(s) quizzes, Crossword puzzles, MCs in 4 flavors, all with the feedback you supply for the different answers, and finally hybrid exercises combining aspects of 2 different exercises enumerated above. Hot Potatoes is intuitive. It only takes 10 minutes to start making your first interactive HP exercise. However, you will need several days or weeks to discover its potential. If any members of this workshop are interested, I will also show you how I use this tool to make Real English exercises.


Forum discussion:

  • Why emphasize the importance of realia? Isn't the wide range of accents confusing for beginners? What about the fast delivery of speech? Why make everything more difficult for beginners and intermediate students? What's the point? Don't students need slow, controlled examples of speech in order to learn?


Synchronous Chat/Presentation:

  • Adobe Connect presentation featuring the first few exercises of a Real English lesson. This is designed to show how pictures, text, video and "teacher audio" are used to make spontaneous speech understandable, and how the exercises "mix" controlled speech with the natural.


A Japanese EFL group called English Star interviewed me. I was surprised to be on the other side of the camera. I'm not very good in this clip, but here it is:

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