Friday, November 28, 2008

Presentation Tips

Here is a website with some tips on presentations.

Which ones do you need to do?

Thursday, November 27, 2008

Changes to The Trylingual Page

If you look at the right hand side of this page you will see a section called Michael's Shared Items. This section will contain posts from other blogs that I think will be helpful for students. Don't forget to leave a comment on their blog.

Some of you will already know about Answer Tips. For those of you who are new here, Answer Tips is a gadget that has been added to this blog. If you double click on any word on this blog, Answer Tips will pop up with a dictionary entry for that word. Answer Tips will also give you the pronunciation of the word.

An idea worth spreading?: Definetely!

This lecture is by Nicholas Negroponte from One Laptop Per Child. One Laptop per Child is a great an NPO with a great idea.

Here is their mission statement:

To create educational opportunities for the world's poorest children by providing each child with a rugged, low-cost, low-power, connected laptop with content and software designed for collaborative, joyful, self-empowered learning.
—OLPC Mission Statement.

For an overview of One Laptop Per Child go here.

What do you think?

Is it a good idea? Will it work? How can you help?

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Howjsay: Making you speak clearer

This website is a really good resource for any student studying English. It is called howjsay. It works the same way as a dictionary. You enter a word you want to find. Instead of giving the meaning of your word, it will show your word in a pink font. If you put your mouse cursor on the pink word the website will say that word.

How can this website help you improve your English?

You should look up words that are difficult to pronounce. Listen to the pronounciation a few times. Then start trying to pronounce the word as close to the website as you can. This might take you a few tries.

You will need some speakers or headphones to use howjysay.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Thesis Statements: Help!

Thesis statements can be very hard for students to learn.

What is a thesis statement?

Here is a good explanation.

Here is a quiz where you can check if you can identify a thesis statement.

How can I become better at writing thesis statements?

You should try to find many examples to see different styles.

Try theses quizzes. Quiz 1, Quiz 2, Quiz 3.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Simple or Compound?

Here is a quiz to test yourself on simple and compound sentences.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Paragraphs: Bringing Order to your Writing

Here is a quick quiz about the order of sentences in a paragraph.

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

What will U learn on iTunes U?

What is iTunes U?

Watch this movie to find out more.

Here is what wikipedia has to say:

iTunes U was announced at Cupertino, California on May 30, 2007. The service was created to manage, distribute, and control access to educational audio and video content for students within a college or university as well as the broader Internet. The online service is without cost to those uploading or downloading material. Content includes course lectures, language lessons, lab demonstrations, sports highlights and campus tours provided by many top colleges and universities from the US, United Kingdom, Australia, Canada, Ireland and New Zealand.

What do you need to start learning form iTunes U?

You will need to download iTunes to your computer from here.

Then follow the instructions from the movie.

You do not need an iPod to watch or listen to the lectures. You can do that from your computer.


Academic Vocabulary: Is it useful for you?

Many of you have studued the AWL. It is such a long list of words. Will you ever be able to remember them all? Maybe. Will you ever have to use them all? Probably not.

It would be better for you to study words that will be useful for you. This website has a great list of exercises that are categorised by university subject. Choose the subject that is closest to what you will study and start learning.

Good Luck!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Playing to Learn II

Here is another great game. This one is from the Discovery channel.

You are lost at sea. This is a life or death game.

Will you survive?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Is Australian TV racist?

Soap Operas are popular in many countries throughout the world. Australia is no exception. Neighbours and Home and Away the two most popular enjoying success not ony in Australia but also the United Kingdom.

However, this article brings up an interesting issue about Australian soap operas. Are they too white? Most of the characters are white Australians and this does not reflect Australia's multicultural society.

Is Australian TV racist? What do you think?

Neighbours airs weeknight (Monday to Friday) at 6:30pm on channel 10.

Home and Away airs weeknights at 7pm on channel 7.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Concessions Fares for International Students in Melbourne

Here is a great movie made by some Monash University students on this issue.

What do you think?

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Playing to Learn

Many students often tell me about how much they love computer games. Have you ever thought about playing a computer game to learn English?

This Flash game lets you play a character who lives in a village in Nepal. You must read the instructions on the screen and complete the tasks.


Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Grammar Revision II

Here are a few quizzes on Subject Verb Agreement (1) (2) and Relative Clauses.

Monday, November 10, 2008

Labelling the Web

Many people worry about the unethical content on the internet. Unethical businesses have seen a wave of customers move over to more ethical businesses- Coffee is the most commonly quoted example of this. Fair trade is becoming a big part of modern business practices.

How does all this relate to the internet? This story is about the idea of introducing a labelling system for ethical websites.

Click on Download audio to listen to the story and think about the questions below.

Do we need a "fair trade" labelling system for the internet?

What will it change?

How will it help you?

The story also lets you read what the the speakers said. Click on Show Transcript to read it.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Half of Cambridge students admit cheating

The headline to this article immediately caught my eye. Cambridge University is one of the most prestigious universities in the world! Is the cheating situation better or worse in other universitites?

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Listening to Obama: What can we learn?

America had a very historic day yesterday. Barack Obama became the first black president of the United States of America. He will be a very important man for the world when he begin his new job in January next year. We should get used to listening to him. 

So...Here is a video of his victory speech, it also has the text of the speech so you can read as well as listen. 

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Americans and You: How do you compare?

As today is a big day in American history, I thought I would post this.

Here is a great multimedia presentation on the life of average Americans. Click on the topics on the menu on the left side.

How do Australians compare to Americans?

How do people from your country compare to them?

Are you the same or completely different?

Remember that 1lbs equals 454 grams and 1 gallon equals 3.78 litres.