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Re: [ExtensiveReading] Working in mini-ER with a test prep class?

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  • Lynn Ellingwood
    What is an IEP? In New York, it means Individualized Education Plan for Special Education students and that is not what you mean! The GRE is for graduate
    Message 1 of 7 , Aug 14, 2007
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      What is an IEP? In New York, it means Individualized Education Plan
      for Special Education students and that is not what you mean!
      The GRE is for graduate school so your students are preparing to
      apply to graduate schools. Do all graduate schools require the GRE?
      And do you test the students for English Language Proficiency? Just
      wondering.

      Extensive Reading is great for any ESOL students to prepare their
      reading comprehension. I would highly recommend it. Lynn

      On Aug 14, 2007, at 1:42 AM, Clarissa C. S. Ryan wrote:

      > Hi--
      >
      > I'm teaching a GRE preparation class at an IEP in
      > California. The last quarter or two, I've had some
      > students who are nowhere near being able to pass the
      > GRE, mostly due to their reading comprehension
      > problems and vocabulary levels. It's not their
      > fault--they haven't been in the US long, and the level
      > of vocabulary on the GRE is ridiculously high. (Not to
      > mention the culturally-dependent analogies, which were
      > removed from the SAT after lawsuits, and were
      > *supposed* to be removed from the GRE in a radical
      > revision this year. The revision was cancelled.)
      >
      > If you're unfamiliar with the GRE, it's a standardized
      > test required by many master's and doctoral programs
      > in the US. Here's one GRE-level vocabulary list:
      > http://www.postech.ac.kr/~gla/gre/33new.txt
      >
      > My students not only don't know those words, but they
      > don't know the "support" words in the context of the
      > test items, so they can't guess well. In addition,
      > they're mostly East Asian and have not studied any
      > Romance languages, so they have no helpful cognates.
      >
      > I think ER would be very helpful for my students. I
      > have them twice a week for 2 hours at a time. The
      > classes have been small so far (only 1 to 5 students).
      > Can you help me think of a way to integrate something
      > like ER into my class without my students wanting to
      > leave early?
      >
      > I don't know whether I can order books beyond our GRE
      > text, but I definitely can't order a full library. Our
      > IEP's library has mostly graded readers based on the
      > classics, which are unpopular with the students
      > (mostly for good reason). I *might* be able to arrange
      > for each student to buy a book. Format, though, is
      > what I'm really puzzled about. I can probably come up
      > with content somehow.
      >
      > Creative suggestions are most welcome!
      >
      >
      > (Previously, I asked about ELL-specific GRE prep
      > books. The answer is, there aren't any that I can
      > find; at least not in English.)
      >
      >
      > --
      > Clarissa C. S. Ryan
      > wintersweet@...
      > http://www.sharedwing.net/
      >
      > http://www.readableblog.com/
      > (for English language learners)
    • Clarissa C. S. Ryan
      ... you mean! Sorry, it s an Intensive English Program. Some of the students are taking time off from their home universities, while others have already
      Message 2 of 7 , Aug 15, 2007
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        >What is an IEP? In New York, it means Individualized
        >Education Plan
        >for Special Education students and that is not what
        you >mean!

        Sorry, it's an Intensive English Program. Some of the
        students are taking time off from their home
        universities, while others have already completed
        their undergraduate degrees. Most of the IEP classes
        are a mix of EFL (as most of the students don't plan
        to remain here) and academic ESL (since many want to
        transfer to the university that hosts the program, to
        finish their bachelor's, start a certification
        program, or start a master's program). Some apply to
        other American schools, too.

        >The GRE is for graduate school so your students are
        >preparing to
        >apply to graduate schools. Do all graduate schools
        >require the GRE?

        No, not all universities require it, and not all
        individual graduate programs within a university
        require it. Generally, more competitive graduate
        programs do require it, though.

        >And do you test the students for English Language
        >Proficiency? Just
        >wondering.

        They take the TOEFL and possibly another placement
        test--I'm not sure. My students' TOEFL scores are
        around (and below) 500, I I think.

        --
        Clarissa C. S. Ryan
        wintersweet@...
        http://www.sharedwing.net/

        http://www.readableblog.com/
        (for English language learners)
      • dk
        Maybe it s time for English readers to go mobile. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ Mobile novels outsell paper books in Japan Fiction now read on a phone
        Message 3 of 7 , Aug 17, 2007
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          Maybe it's time for English readers to go mobile.

          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

          Mobile novels outsell paper books in Japan
          Fiction now read on a phone screen more often than on paper

          When we reported last year on the rapid spread in Japan of novels
          designed to be read on mobile phones we could hardly have guessed that
          they would be outselling print publications within a few months. But
          that's exactly what has happened in the first half of 2007.

          According to literary website Japanese Writers' House , two minor-league
          publishers have just celebrated selling more than the long-established
          behemoths that have always dominated Japanese publishing.

          More:
          http://www.tech.co.uk/gadgets/phones/mobile-phones/news/mobile-novels-ou
          tsell-paper-books-in-japan?articleid=1073198460
          Or:
          http://tinyurl.com/2ktxfk

          ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

          Dave Kees

          GUANGZHOU, CHINA
          Email - DAVEKEES@...
          Skype - DAVEKEES
          Blogs - INSIGHTS-INTO-TEFL.blogspot.com, DAVEKEES.blogspot.com
          Podcast - gcast.com/u/DAVEKEES/main
        • Abdulkarim Al-Nujaidi
          Sorry for the late reply. But being a non-native speaker who had to take the GRE, I believe that the GRE verbal section is designed to test native graduate
          Message 4 of 7 , Aug 31, 2007
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            Sorry for the late reply.
            But being a non-native speaker who had to take the GRE, I believe that the GRE verbal section is designed to test native graduate students. Therefore, the focus is on uncommon vocabulary to show exceptionally high academic skills. This would take non-native speakers an awfully a lot of time to encounter. Good luck.

            ----- Original Message ----
            From: Clarissa C. S. Ryan <wintersweet@...>
            To: ExtensiveReading@yahoogroups.com
            Sent: Tuesday, August 14, 2007 8:42:05 AM
            Subject: [ExtensiveReading] Working in mini-ER with a test prep class?


            Hi--

            I'm teaching a GRE preparation class at an IEP in
            California. The last quarter or two, I've had some
            students who are nowhere near being able to pass the
            GRE, mostly due to their reading comprehension
            problems and vocabulary levels. It's not their
            fault--they haven't been in the US long, and the level
            of vocabulary on the GRE is ridiculously high. (Not to
            mention the culturally-dependent analogies, which were
            removed from the SAT after lawsuits, and were
            *supposed* to be removed from the GRE in a radical
            revision this year. The revision was cancelled.)

            If you're unfamiliar with the GRE, it's a standardized
            test required by many master's and doctoral programs
            in the US. Here's one GRE-level vocabulary list:
            http://www.postech.ac.kr/~gla/gre/33new.txt

            My students not only don't know those words, but they
            don't know the "support" words in the context of the
            test items, so they can't guess well. In addition,
            they're mostly East Asian and have not studied any
            Romance languages, so they have no helpful cognates.

            I think ER would be very helpful for my students. I
            have them twice a week for 2 hours at a time. The
            classes have been small so far (only 1 to 5 students).
            Can you help me think of a way to integrate something
            like ER into my class without my students wanting to
            leave early?

            I don't know whether I can order books beyond our GRE
            text, but I definitely can't order a full library. Our
            IEP's library has mostly graded readers based on the
            classics, which are unpopular with the students
            (mostly for good reason). I *might* be able to arrange
            for each student to buy a book. Format, though, is
            what I'm really puzzled about. I can probably come up
            with content somehow.

            Creative suggestions are most welcome!


            (Previously, I asked about ELL-specific GRE prep
            books. The answer is, there aren't any that I can
            find; at least not in English.)


            --
            Clarissa C. S. Ryan
            wintersweet@...
            http://www.sharedwing.net/

            http://www.readableblog.com/
            (for English language learners)



            Yahoo! Groups Links





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          • Ron Murphy
            Hi all, I have taken on the challenge of designing a curriculum-wide reading course for my university. I was able, a few years ago, to get a library of 1,000
            Message 5 of 7 , Sep 11 4:43 PM
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              Hi all,

              I have taken on the challenge of designing a curriculum-wide reading
              course for my university. I was able, a few years ago, to get a
              library of 1,000 or so graded readers begun. The uni has added to that
              slowly, with a bit of variety being achieved, but still the basic
              graded readers.

              I will use these materials in my course, but I would very much like
              other types of materials in English that might interest relatively
              low/mid-level students. ... magazines, easy authentic novels, comics,
              manga in English, posters....

              I have a (very) small budget and hope to spend it wisely.

              This course won' t officially begin for three more semesters. Until
              then, I have a couple of 'free' courses in which I can trial methods
              and materials. Any and all advice or suggestions is welcomed.

              Thank you.

              Ron Murphy
              Ehime University
            • Julian Bamford
              ... Hi Ron, I didn t notice any replies to you on this list. I have just a few ideas, most of which have been on this list recently but here they are. I ve put
              Message 6 of 7 , Sep 27 10:27 PM
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                > I would very much like other types of materials in English that might
                > interest relatively low/mid-level students. ... magazines, easy
                > authentic novels, comics, manga in English, posters....
                > I have a (very) small budget and hope to spend it wisely.

                Hi Ron,
                I didn't notice any replies to you on this list. I have just a few
                ideas, most of which have been on this list recently but here they are.
                I've put Japanese prices as you're in Japan

                Mary Glasgow magazines (very attractive and topical): Click
                (beginners); Crown (pre-intermediate); Team (intermediate). 6 issues
                per year. (I can't put my hands on the Japan agent's address or price
                list. Mail me offlist if you want me to hunt for it.)

                To find the easy authentic novels, see Eigo Tadoku Kanzen Book Guide
                2nd Edition: thousands of book titles, each with a reading-ease level.
                2600 yen (get rid of any line break if you paste this long link into
                your browser)
                http://www.amazon.co.jp/gp/switch-language/product/490209150X/
                ref=dp_change_lang/503-2161258-6862331?ie=UTF8&language=en%5FJP

                manga in English are not easy, but the interest factor can make them
                understandable. Perhaps buy Volume 1 of a few popular series, and see
                if students ask you for further volumes. Some popular series available
                in English (see Amazon.jp site, about 1000 yen each) are
                One Piece
                Dragon Ball
                Dragon Ball Z
                Prince of Tennis
                GTO
                Initial D
                Death Note

                For free graded online material, see Kieran McGovern's ESL Reading site
                http://www.gradedreading.pwp.blueyonder.co.uk/

                More URLs for material and reviews are listed on the Extensive Reading
                pages
                http://www.extensivereading.net/er/materials.html

                Best,
                Julian
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