by Marc Anderson
smiling ladies with mustachios

5 Pronunciation Tips to Get You Started on Changing Your Accent and Increase Your English Speaking Ability

Are people concerned about accents?

Overall, it appears so based on the Internet searches and firsthand experience teaching ESL to learners of varied ages.

Accents reveal the background of a person and their unique characteristics. Lots of people are proud of their accents and really like hearing other people’s accents, too. But, sometimes accents interfere with understanding and communicating. It might be difficult for people to understand what you have to say. You might be embarrassed by what you perceive as an accent and avoid social interactions. Frustration might set in if you notice that others don’t understand you. You may be asked to repeat yourself. People might get distracted from your accent and not attend to what you have to say. Speaking with an accent that is not intelligible to others may limit your educational or career advancement. This in [...]

by Alysia Bartley
melbourne coloration festival

Casual Conversation in ESL – The Inside Scoop Part III

So what exactly is casual conversation?

Casual conversation means blabber, chatter, chitchat, gab, gossip, table talk, trivial conversation, jesting, joking, kidding, ribbing, dialoguing, and small talk. – Roget’s Thesaurus 2014.

The more social actions, the more activities you participate in, and the more time you spend with these actions and activities, the more opportunities you have to speak casual English. The [...]

by Marc Anderson
Woman running on the beach. Vacation.

Be a DREAM CHASER not a Dream Killer – Ignite Your MOTIVATION to Learn ESL

So many people think that those people who are successful at learning a second language have…

high cognitive abilities
a special talent
a unique skill

Research shows otherwise. The number one factor that is a predictor for successful ESL learning is MOTIVATION. And the number one word to help justify an excuse is the word BUT.

Check out this video and see how “BUT” [...]

by Marc Anderson
Man Shouting

A Review of VocabMonk.com – an Innovative Vocabulary building tool that Boosts ESL Skills

Words are the only things that last forever. – William Hazlitt (1778-1830), English critic and essayist. 

These words and many other pertinent quotes fill the pages of VocabMonk.com. Co-Founded by Vidhatanand, Deepasha, and Vaibhav Kakkar – and newly-released, it is advertised as a one-stop shop for personalized vocabulary building. Short-term benefits include helping with the vocabulary sections of competitive exams [...]

by Allen Mendler
small man walking on the rope

Keeping Teachers Healthy and Balanced In Trying Times

At the end of a conference on resilience I gave to a group of first year teachers, one of the participants told me her abbreviated story of the great stress she had been experiencing for months and what she did to end the slide.  Paula taught in an inner-city charter school traveling an hour and a half each way [...]

by Alysia Bartley
a super hero toy

2 More Ways to Talk (Casual and Formal)… in the English Language Part II

Introduction – Definition of Casual and Formal Language

In an earlier article I wrote about how to talk using casual language and formal language in English. I defined the words “casual” and “formal” before discussing the topic, and gave some practical examples of words and phrases, what they mean,  and when to say them. This is a brief review in [...]

by Marc Anderson
woman with colorful balloons on seaside

Learn to Speak Casual English Every Day Like a Native English Speaker

What is casual speech?

Casual speech is the way you talk with others who are close to you or in everyday informal situations like riding the bus, shopping at the store, chatting on the phone, and talking to your co-workers during work breaks. It is the language that is used on television shows and in the movies and often in [...]