language

Lingua.ly

Lingua.ly is an App and a web application which helps you to learn a new/second language. The application offers more than the usual Language Apps. Lingua.ly provides namely much more than the vocabulary and sentences enough to get around in another country as a tourist.

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In order to master a language, at least four different language skills should be trained:
  1. reading (and understanding)
  2. writing
  3. listening
  4. speaking and conversation
In addition the knowledge about vocabulary, grammar, idiom, pronunciation, and culture is required.

You will find many programs which assist in training vocabulary. It is hard to find a program that you can use to train the expressive language skills: writing and speaking/conversation.

Lingua.ly mainly offers training in reading and vocabulary. Lingua.ly does this in a creative and motivating way aiming at adult students. The motivational aspects lie in the fact that Lingua.ly  selects texts based on the words the user has entered. The texts come from recent newspaper articles and magazine clippings, often from the countries where the target language is used. This implies that the information you read is based on your level, your interests, it is up-to-date, about current events, and  rovides insight in the culture of the country.

The program does not yet offer ample material for all languages you can choose. However, when your mother tongue is English you can choose many target languages that contain and generate enough learning material.

The PC version offers more functionality than the App!

 Purchase  Free
 Hardware  iPad, iPod touch, iPhone, Android tablet, PC
 Requirements   iOS 6 /browser

 

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Critical Thinking

Think-O-Meter is the name of Pearson’s Critical Thinking App. Pearson uses the RED-model for critical thinking. The App provides texts with multiple-choice questions. Answering the questions requires close reading, thinking and reasoning. The App provides useful feedback.

The texts and questions can certainly be discussed in pairs or small groups, which will make it more valuable as students have to argument with each other.

The level of the texts and the questions are at a high level. I would say pre-university or university level.

The App is difficult to find in the App Store. Go to Pearson’s website to get to the App in the App Store.

 Purchase  Free
 Hardware  iPad, iPhone
 Requirements  iOS 3.1 or higher

Dictionary App

Merriam Webster logo

We, and definitely our students, live in the 21st Century. They constantly use digital resources and equipment. We will loose them if we only offer them the good, old,  paper-based Dictionary. Teach them how to use Google Translate properly. Besides, there are very good (FREE of charge) dictionaries available for smartphones and tablets. In my opinion, Merriam Webster English Dictionary is one of the best.

Functionalities of the Merriam Webster App:

  • example sentences
  • thesaurus : synonyms and antonyms
  • audio pronunciation
  • voice search
  • when you type in the ´search field´ the App offers alternative suggestions

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 Price  Free
 Hardware  iPhone, iPad, iPod Touch, Android
 Compatability  iOS 6.0 or higher