Every student has a different way of learning. One loves to read and learn, another likes to listen and some can only concentrate for a few minutes and need instant feedback. As a teacher I know that I should be capable of offering all of these learning styles at once. However, that’s still a big challenge to me. This keeps me on my toes regarding effective tools and methods. And then … after a lot of thinking … I came up with a tool I wanted to develop myself.
Immersion and CEF levels
About half a year ago, somewhere in September, October 2013, I decided to give it a shot and started developing a new learning tool for everybody who wants to improve his or her English skills, preferably bit by bit. Not practicing two hours in a row, but every day a little bit. Call it immersion, although you’ll never be able to copy a real-life situation of being abroad, in an English speaking environment. That way one gets the most ideal situation of immersion. I’ve always recommended my students to go to NubeterEngels.nl, on which they offer a user 4 questions a day (through mail). This is a great site and it has inspired me till this very day. However, I miss a few extras in NubeterEngels, such as one or a few more questions a day, the CEF-levels and an adaptive learning system. I know that students want to get an idea of how their levels compare to the Common European Framework consisting of the beginners level: A1 – A2, the intermediate and upper-intermediate: B1 – B2 and the advanced and near-native speakers levels C1 – C2.
After you’ve answered the 5 questions a day in about 2 to 3 minutes, you always get to see what your score is. Nothing new, these apps, games and exercises do already exist for some time. However, I thought I could add value to a tool if I’d focus on adaptive learning. This means that the computer can ‘see’ how a user is doing and it will offer various levels of questions on various skills such as reading, writing, listening and vocabulary.
It was already in the title of this blog but here is the name of the tool: English a Day… Keeps the teacher away! The slogan winks to me as a teacher. Of course I don’t want to be sent away. I love to stick around and be involved in a classroom’s turmoil, or behind the computer with one, two or three students, enjoying a Skype training. Interaction, a secure learning environment, some learning goals and good fun are the best way to learn a language.
So, English a Day is a learning tool and web-app:
- for everyone who’s 16+ and wants to learn English on a daily basis;
- that is free;
- that offers 750+ questions with grammar, listening, reading and pronunciation exercises;
- that can be used on any device and with any browser;
- with instant answers, explanation and overall score lists;
- with explanation in Dutch and English, more languages available in the future;
- that is ads-free: the app is without any distractive, pop-up advertisements;
- for those who consider practicing speaking & conversational skills with international tutors.
More information and visuals of the app, click here: English a Day
The launching of English a Day is planned to be in August/September. Can’t you wait until that time? Consider being a tester at the beta test stage, which is to start at the end of May. Subscribe by sending a mail to: firstname.lastname@example.org. Only a max. of 120 testers may participate.