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« March 2006 | メイン | May 2006 »
blog title Bon Jovi and iPod April 30, 2006

The other day I went to a Bon Jovi concert. I was never a big fan of Bon Jovi – I’ve never bought their albums. But a friend gave me a ticket, so I went, and after all I had a great time.

Before going, I downloaded all the Bon Jovi songs I could find. Listening to them on my iPod, I realized that I’d heard many of their hit songs on the radio, and in the background at various shops, over the last 20 years. But I was amazed to see how the music world has changed in these last twenty years. Now, after hearing about a new band, we can download their music quickly and easily – and enjoy their concert even more!

Do you download music? Do you listen to it on your iPod? Do you listen to podcasts?

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 11:34 AM |
blog title Movie and Television scripts for studying English April 28, 2006
It's easy to find your favorite movies and television shows on DVD at the rental shop. But after you rent them what do you do to study English? Some people watch them over and over, sometimes without subtitles, sometimes with Japanese subtitles, and sometimes with English subtitles. But why not go one step further and use the script to study vocabulary and conversation?

You can find many scripts for TV and movies on the Internet. One site is called Drew's Script-o-Rama. I t has transcripts from television shows like West Wing and CSI, as well as popular movies.

Unfortunately, the site is not easy to navigate because it has a lot of advertisements. So, I'll guide you through looking for one script for West Wing. On the first page, click on the link under the picture called TV Scripts. On the next page, click on the S-Z link. Use the scroll bar on the right side to find The West Wing and click on it. On the next page, use the scroll bar at the right and find the Episode List on the left side. Select a season, for example Season 3. Then, click on an Episode such as 3.06, Gone Quiet. The next page will have the transcript. You can print it and read it, follow along as you watch the episode, and practice the conversations with a friend!

What are your favorite American TV shows or movies?

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:27 PM |
blog title Watching Movies and Television to Study English April 26, 2006
westwing.jpg Watching American movies and TV programs can be a great way to study English. You can combine entertainment and learning. Some people watch movies over and over, sometimes without subtitles, sometimes with Japanese subtitles, and sometimes with English subtitles. What do you think of studying with movies? Have you tried it? What are you favorite movies for studying English?
投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:20 PM |
blog title Sing Along to Practice English April 24, 2006
Heard any good songs lately? Do you like to listen to English music? I like a lot of different kinds of music and I like to sing along with the radio or with my mp3 player. Sometimes, I can't quite catch the words to the songs. The Internet can help! There's a page that has a lot of Classic Pop and Rock Song Lyrics. Print them out, memorize them, and sing along. You can also use the online dictionaries like Popjiyso and Rikai to look up words you don't know.

Do you have a favorite English musician?

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:16 PM |
blog title Jokes in English April 22, 2006
The Jokes in English website has many funny jokes written in easy English. You can read the jokes and hear them in mp3s. Here is an example: John Says I'm Pretty
    Sue: John says I'm pretty. Andy says I'm ugly. What do you think, Peter?

    Peter: I think you are pretty ugly.

    Note: Insulting someone is often considered funny, especially when that person wants a complement.

    Note: pretty ugly = very ugly

Jokes can be a fun way to practice English! Try them!
投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:35 PM |
blog title Sing in English! April 21, 2006
You can learn to sing songs in English by listening to podcasts! Try it! It is a lot of fun.

Here is a very easy song: I'm a Little Teapot. Listen to the song, and repeat along. Here are the words:

    I'm a little teapot,
    Short and stout.
    Here is my handle.
    Here is my spout.

    When I get all steamed up,
    Hear me shout,
    "Tip me over,
    and pour me out."

You can learn this song on your computer, or you can also save it and copy it to your iPod (or other music player) and learn while walking around. It’s a lot of fun!

You can set iTunes to automatically download new songs to learn: iTunes > Advanced > Subscribe to Podcast…, and then paste http://www.manythings.org/songs/rss.xml

If you don’t use iTunes, you can find more songs to learn at the Learn a Song website. Enjoy!

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:30 PM |
blog title Voice of America podcast April 18, 2006
The Voice of America broadcasts news from the American government. You can listen to their podcast on your computer or iPod (or any mp3 player). This is a great way to learn about American news while practicing your English listening.

If you use iTunes, just click Advanced > Subscribe to Podcast…, and then paste http://feeds.feedburner.com/voa After that, iTunes will automatically download the latest news, and copy it to your iPod, so that you can listen while working, exercising, or commuting.

You can see a list of all the VOA news programs. Click on “MP3” to listen to the file on your computer. You can also save the mp3 file to listen later. Click the title to read the text of the news article: You can read while listening! Click PopJisyo to read the English text with pop-up Japanese definitions. This is a great way to read and listen to English!

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:23 PM |
blog title Listen Up! Podcasts in English April 16, 2006
Do you like to listen to music on your MP3 player? Well, now you can also use your MP3 player to practice listening in English! Or, if you don’t have an MP3 player, you can listen on your computer.

If you like to listen to stories, EigoTown has Classic Stories like Cinderella and A Christmas Carol, and Mysteries you can listen to on your MP3 Player. StoryPatch has stories about a playful raccoon named Fatty. On that site you can listen and read and look up difficult vocabulary in a learner’s dictionary.

If stories aren’t what you like to listen to, then Englishcaster has a long list of English podcasts for English Language Learners. Users have rated them, so you can find ones that other English students have enjoyed.

With podcasts, you can “Listen Up!” anywhere, even while you’re running!

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:54 PM |
blog title Listen Up! Breaking News April 15, 2006
Another site to help you practice your listening is Breaking News English. It has news stories from around the world. Each story has and easier and harder version. You can choose which is best for you. When you click on Listening, an MP3 file will play on your computer. Besides the mp3, this site also has the full text of the news article. You can listen and read at the same time. Or, you can read first and then listen. Or, listen and then read. There are also some questions and activities, including discussion and quizzes (with answers!) that you can print to help you learn more about the topic and to help you learn the vocabulary. And because the sound files are mp3, you can listen to them on your iPod too (more about that next time).

Listening and reading are great ways to improve your vocabulary! So, Listen up!

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:44 PM |
blog title Listen Up! News April 13, 2006
Do you like to listen to current news?

There are several places to go on the Internet to listen to news. I will introduce you to some that are designed for English language learners.

The first site is called The Learning Edge. (It requires Flash Player. If you don’t have Flash Player installed on your computer, you can download it for free.) The Learning Edge is an interactive newspaper on interesting topics in Canada. You can read about health, diet, jobs, and culture.

When you click on Issue 1, the newspaper will open. Move your mouse over the text to select a story to read. Then, click the headline or the story to hear it and read it. This site is great for beginning English learners!

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:40 PM |
blog title Listen Up! Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab April 11, 2006
When someone says, “Listen up!” they mean you should listen carefully or pay attention. Computers can help you develop good listening skills in English. This week, let's look at several websites where you can practice your listening skills.

Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab offers listening practice quizzes at 3 levels: easy, medium, and difficult. If you click on the first easy one, Answering Machine, a new page will appear that has important vocabulary and questions to answer as you listen.

To listen, click either the Listen with Real Player button or the Listen with Windows Media Player button. Of course, you must have either Real Player or Windows Media Player installed on your computer. They’re free, so you can download them if you don’t already have one.

While you are listening, you should answer the quiz questions and then click the Final Score button to find out how well you could understand. If you want, you can listen again and again until you get a perfect score!

There are so many listening activities at Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab. It will give you listening opportunities for many days. So, everybody, “Listen up!”

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 3:35 PM |
blog title What could this mean? April 9, 2006
late.jpg
This is a sign from the recent Expo at Nagoya. What could it mean?
投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title What do you think of EigoSurf? April 8, 2006
What do you think of this blog? Are you enjoying it? Is the information helpful? Is it too simple? Too difficult? What would you like to hear about next?
投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title Tell your friends! April 7, 2006
If you've found them useful, please tell all your friends about Rikai.com, PopJisyo.com and this blog. Your friends will appreciate it, and you can start sharing information about ways to learn English!

If you have English-speaking friends who want to study Japanese or Chinese, or Spanish-speaking friends who want to read English, they can use Rikai.com to help read their languages too! Similarly, PopJisyo.com will help students studying or speaking Korean. I hope you - and all your friends - Japanese and foreign - enjoy using Rikai.com and PopJisyo.com.

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title Popjisyo.com - another online English/Japanese dictionary April 6, 2006
Once you've seen how helpful Rikai.com can be, you might want to try another similar site: Popjisyo.com. This site also defines English words, and you can use it the same way as Rikai.com. PopJisyo.com is slower, but it has many features, including a list of your Favorite English sites, a Study List of the words you want to review, a News Feed (RSS) reader, and a version that works on your mobile phone.

Give it a try! Popjisyo.com

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title Rikai.com - pro and con April 5, 2006
Rikai.com is not perfect. Like any dictionary, Rikai.com will sometimes show you a wrong translation, or it may show many different translations. In contrast, the word lists in Russell's World show the exact meaning of some of the words used in the blog. But Rikai.com will show you the Japanese meanings of any word in any web page, and is still easier than using a paper or handheld electronic dictionary - much easier!
投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title How to use Rikai.com to read English April 4, 2006
  1. Go to Rikai.com in your browser.
  2. If you see "Enter a web-address" in the center of the page, click the "Japanese (英和)" link in the upper right.
  3. Select the text "http://" in the box at the left of the page.
  4. Type or paste in any English text (such as "Hello. My name is Miyuki."). This could be text from an email or part of a web page. Or, you can type or paste the URL of any web page. For example, paste in the address of Russell's World: http://blog.eigotown.com/Russell_Willis/
  5. Click the "Go" button. (You need to click this button. Unlike other web forms, you can't just hit the Enter or Return key on your keyboard.)
  6. Point your mouse at any English word on the screen. A Japanese definition pops up! This is a really easy way to get help reading English; It's much easier than using a paper or electronic dictionary.
投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title Easily read English with Rikai.com April 3, 2006
If you want to learn English, it's important to read as much English as possible. Reading is a great way to learn new words and expressions, and it can be a lot of fun. But reading English can be difficult, when there are words you don't know. It's a lot of trouble to look up these words in a dictionary.

Today I'd like to introduce a great web service: Rikai.com. Rikai.com will help you read English web pages, by very easily showing you the Japanese meaning of any English words. I use it all the time. You could use it to help read English web pages, emails, or any other text on your computer. It's a great way to practice reading English, without having to look up words in a dictionary. Rikai.com looks them up for you! Give it a try; I think you'll use Rikai.com every day.

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title Hello! I'm Chris Houser. April 2, 2006
Oh! I forgot to introduce myself. Hello! My name is Chris Houser. I love to read blogs and listen to podcasts. I believe that these web services are the future of all education. Already MIT and Stanford - two of the most famous universities in the U.S.A - are distributing their academic lectures on web sites and podcasts. In my university here in Japan, we're putting all of our course materials online. I want to use the Internet more and more in all my studies and teaching!

I hope that you decide to read this blog every day. If you do, you will every day get better and better at studying English! Let's surf and learn together!

投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |
blog title What's coming up at EigoSurf? April 1, 2006
Over the next few weeks, I'll introduce myself and talk about my experiences as an American living in Japan. We'll talk about interesting ways to learn English, especially using the latest media and technology. I'll also describe working and attending schools in America and Europe. Finally, we'll surf the web in English, concentrating on web sites that help you study English:
  • dictionaries and translation services - and ways to use them effectively
  • how to find blogs and podcasts, and how to make your own
  • all sorts of great information sources, like wikipedia, wikibooks, RSS feeds, and big news sites
  • stories, songs, and music
  • how to find and even make your own video programs
  • how to find pen pals and chat partners
  • educational games, quizzes, and flashcards that will make learning fun
All of these sites will work on your computer, and many of them will also work on your mobile phone. Get ready to surf!
投稿者: Chris Houser 日時: 9:00 AM |

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最近のエントリー
Bon Jovi and iPod
Movie and Television scripts for studying English
Watching Movies and Television to Study English
Sing Along to Practice English
Jokes in English
Sing in English!
Voice of America podcast
Listen Up! Podcasts in English
Listen Up! Breaking News
Listen Up! News

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最近のコメント
Bon Jovi and iPod
Movie and Television scripts for studying English
 └ Yuka (05/02)
Watching Movies and Television to Study English
Sing Along to Practice English
Jokes in English
Sing in English!
Voice of America podcast
Listen Up! Podcasts in English
Listen Up! Breaking News
Listen Up! News
Listen Up! Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab
What could this mean?
 └ MASA (04/13)
 └ (04/21)
What do you think of EigoSurf?
Tell your friends!
Popjisyo.com - another online English/Japanese dictionary
Rikai.com - pro and con
How to use Rikai.com to read English
Easily read English with Rikai.com
Hello! I'm Chris Houser.
What's coming up at EigoSurf?

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