Sunday, March 28, 2010

Previewing Books Online

People can use the internet to access just about everything. However, when it comes to books, I like to see what I'm getting and read parts of it before I buy. Sometimes, however, I don't have the time to drive out to my local Barnes and Noble to browse.

Recently, I found that the Hachette Book Group lets you preview many books online. The selection is limited, but if you're an educator or a student in a browsing mood, this site is an option for you. When you find a book that is 'open' to this feature, you just click on it. Then go to the top of the page and scroll down to the Table of Contents or one of the chapters that is 'open' to this feature. Click on the chapter and begin reading. It's as simple as that.

There are also podcast excerpts available that could make great short listening exercises for my ESL classes. If only I had more time to browse....

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Saturday, March 20, 2010

Teaching Parts of Speech

When I teach grammar in my ESL classes (at any level), I like to make sure that my students know the eight parts of speech (recognize the terms, that is) and how they function. What are they? Nouns, pronouns, verbs, adverbs, conjunctions/connectors, adjectives, prepositions, and interjections.

For Cambridge students preparing for any exam, it's essential that they have a consciousness of the parts of speech to make a sound choice of word to fit into gaps and clozes for the Use of English, Paper 3.

Native speakers of English also benefit from familiarity with the parts of speech. This cartoon series (which has been around for a long time, actually), The Schoolhouse Rock/Grammar Rock , is a fun way to learn and review these forms. Adverbs and adjectives color our speech and writing, and English would be pretty dull without them.