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Friday, 28 January 2011

Breaking News English - Reading, Writing, Listening and Speaking with Current Events (for higher level)

Today's Website~

●   Breaking News English
  
    

What is it about?

●  This website provides lesson plans and podcasts of current events and news

     for learning English.

●  It also provides PDF handouts with activities of all language skills for teachers

    to select to use in the classroom.  

●  The MP3 file can be downloaded.  You can either play it through the Internet or

     your MP3 player.
  
●  It also provides interactive quizzes and games related to the content.

Why is the content good for language learning?

●  Provide the latest news and up-to-date events, and they are short.

     (Authentic English)

●  Provide audio files which can be downloaded.  Learners can practice listening and

    do listening activities as many times as they like.

●  Various activities and games help learners learn new vocabulary and be familiar

    with its meaning.  The sentences constructing game is challenging and fun.

●  The PDF handouts and activities can be used by teachers in class to encourage

    students to practice all the skills, particularly for the speaking part.

●  The interactive games and activities could be done many times without feeling bored.

How might you use it in a language teaching context?

● Take "the word "Dear" disappearing in e-mail" for example.

●  Have students work in group and talk about their experiences in writing e-mail 

    and letters.

●  Have students listen to the news and then talk about the main idea they hear.

●  Provide students with handouts, have them underline the new vocabulary and

     guess the meaning from the context.

●  Have students play "Flash cards" in their group.  When they are familiar with the 

    new vocabulary and the meanings, have them to play the "Match" game. 

    Encourage them to try "Fill in the blank" and "Hangman" at home to be familiar

    with the vocabulary.

●  Have each group play "Sentence jumble" to construct the whole news.  Those 

    who finish "Sentence jumble" could then challenge the "No letter" game. 

●  Have students work individually to play "Missing words".  Students listen and 

    type in the words in the spaces.

●  Ask students some questions about the content (could use the ones in the 

    handout), and encourage them to have a discussion, take notes and present

    in class.

●  Have students write a 200-word e-mail sharing their opinions about the 

    content as homework. 

Limitations~
  
●  There seems to be only one broadcaster reading all the news and the quality 

    of the sound of the broadcasting is not stable.

●  The layout of the web page looks complicated and fills with ads in between, 

    which makes it hard to get the information.

●   Teachers have to select the news which is suitable for students' level.   

●   The news is difficult for lower-level students.   
   
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Example

  Flash cards

     the meaning of the vocabulary:

      
     Flip the card- the matched vocabulary:



   

  Match  

    Choose the matched vocabulary.


    


Sentence jumble  

    What comes next?  Construct the news.



   
 
No letter game 

    Guess the words in the newsSee how many words do you remember. 

     Notice the sentence patterns and you can easily construct the whole text.


   

  Missing words 

     Dictation and check if you could spell the words correctly.




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