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Learn English Kids

What it is: Learn English Kids is a website especially for students who are learning English or need some remedial help in language development.  Created by the British Council, Learn English Kids has fun games, songs, stories, and offline activities to help students learn English.  All of the activities are created so that they can be done independently or with family members or friends.  In the listen and watch section of the site are animated stories and songs, many have accompanying activities to use in the classroom.  There are also videos and online activities designed to build listening skills and comprehension.  In the read write section are downloadable materials designed to help develop reading and writing skills.  The make section features online activities in which students can create something.  There are also arts and crafts directions to download and videos of children creating things.  In the explore section are additional resources and websites for English language learners. The game section features several games broken down into language games, fun with English, little Kids games, and games to play with friends.  Students learn basic English vocabulary, alphabetical order, phoneme matching (matching phoneme to its sound), hieroglyphics, months in a year, famous landmarks, seasons, recycling, ancient Egypt, animal habitats, around the world, bugs, Chinese New Year, Christmas, cities, colors, computers, countries, currency, daily routines, days of the week, dinosaurs, directions, environment, fairy tales, food, Great Barrier Reef, health, holidays, human body, maps, money, nature, numbers, Olympic games, pets, planets, plants, school, solar system, space, sports, technology, weather, just to name a few. How to integrate Learn English Kids into the classroom: Learn English Kids is a comprehensive resource that can be used in your classroom in a variety of ways.  The site was designed specifically for English Language Learners (or ESL students) but is appropriate for primary students or students who need some remedial language building.  The site has been created to be navigated and used independently and many of the activities would be perfect as a center that students can visit.  The games are outstanding for vocabulary and language building.  Listen and Watch has an impressive collection of songs that are traditional children tunes like Hickory, dickory dock, teaching songs that help students remember things like months in a year, and themed songs.  Each song is accompanied by a pdf of the lyrics and a print activity.   There are several well made short stories for your students to read along with.  The animated stories can be read with or without audio.  Each story comes with the ability to print and includes accompanying activity suggestions.  Kids Talk features videos of kids answering a variety of questions.  The Listen and Watch section also has a place for students to practice their listening skills.  Students watch an animated video and listen to what the characters say.  Then they are asked to interact with the activity according to what they heard.  These activities are great for ELL, but would also be excellent for students with sensory integration problems.  In the Read and Write section, students read a passage and are given follow up questions that they can write about themselves.  These would make an excellent writing center for students who need some prompting to write.  In the Create section students can create online stories, characters, etc.  There are also some offline printable activities and suggestions of things to create.  This site features so many great resources, it will keep you ready with activities for your students.  Every one of the activities/songs/read alongs are high quality and engaging.  Students will love this site!  I cannot stress enough that this site has something for every student, not just English Language Learners.  My kindergarten and first grade students really enjoy using this site. Tips: This site could take you hours to explore to find all of it’s hidden treasures.  If you are looking for a specific game, story, or topic, you may want to click on “Site Map” at the very bottom of the webpage.  Here you can sort through all of the resources by topic, finding exactly what you need quickly.  What a great website!! Be sure to check out the Teacher page where you will find lesson plans, resources, and guidance for teaching your ELL students. Leave a comment and share how you are using Learn English Kids in your classroom.

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Rewordify: help kids understand what they read

Posted by admin | Posted in Evaluate, Inquiry, Interactive book, Knowledge (remember), Language Arts, Middle/High School, Primary Elementary, Secondary Elementary, Understand (describe, explain), web tools | Posted on 14-08-2013

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Rewordify-understand what you read iLearn Technology

What it is: Rewordify is a neat online app that helps struggling readers, ESL/ELL students, etc. improve their reading comprehension and vocabulary development.  Students can copy and paste a difficult passage into Rewordify and it instantly transforms the text by highlighting words it has substituted with more common/easily understood, language.  Students can click on the highlighted word to view the original word that was replaced.

Teachers can use Rewordify to create vocabulary activities from any high-interest reading passage, make over 350 classics more accessible, and show students how to surf the web the way a strong reader does.

Settings within Rewordify let students adjust how they interact with difficult passages based on their own preferences and learning needs.

How to integrate Rewordify into your classroom:  Rewordify is a fantastic web app for struggling readers (or any reader!).  Often, non-fiction can be difficult for students to read and understand.  Even strong readers can struggle with the new vocabulary and terms used.  Rewordify simplifies the text so that students can read through it successfully for comprehension.  It doesn’t stop there!  Since all of the words that were reworded are highlighted, students can see new vocabulary in context.  Rewordify can help students build up the ability to recognize context clues and how to use them to increase comprehension.

Anastasis is inquiry based.  We do a LOT of research, even with our youngest students.  The Internet is packed with fantastic resources for learning, but these resources are typically not created with student readers in mind.  As a result, students may struggle through a text and lose out on some of the rich learning in the process.  Rewordify is a great solution for us because students can quickly copy and paste text into Rewordify (works on iPads too!) and instantly read a more student friendly version of the text.

Classic literature is classic for a reason.  This literature holds timeless truths, superior storytelling and enchanting characters.  Students rarely choose to read the classics on their own because the language can add a difficult layer to the reading, causing the story to be lost in the frustration.  Rewordify has more than 350 classics built-in to be read directly on the site.  Students can choose a book to read, modify their settings of how they would like to view the words, and jump right in.  Students can choose to have the words default to the easier, modified word; can ask Rewordify to highlight words that it would have changed so that they can click on the word if they need an alternative; or see both versions of the word in context side by side.

ESL/ELL students will enjoy this site for the way that it allows them autonomy in their reading and vocabulary development.

Rewordify is also a great way for students to learn and practice vocabulary and discovering new synonyms for words.  Any text can be added to Rewordify, high school students could plug-in their own writing to determine if they have used interesting language.  If nothing is highlighted, there could be some work to do on word choice.

If you only have one or two computers available to students in your classroom, why not set up a bookmark to Rewordify that students can visit as needed during research, reading, etc.?  Students will be empowered to read anything they encounter with increased confidence.

Tips: In addition to the classics, you will also see a variety of news websites and articles that work well with Rewordify.  Whole pages of the site are automatically reworded for ease of understanding.

What do you think of Rewordify?  How do you plan to use it in your classroom?

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[…] though, so i’m including a link to an excellent explanation from Kelly Tenkely’s blog. http://ilearntechnology.com/?p=5100 > > > Susan Stephenson > http://www.thebookchook.com > > […]

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