There are so many English language learning tools out there and with the sometimes daily advances in technology, you are sure to find new and ground-breaking techniques and devices which make great tools for learning English. Here we provide you with a quick run-down on some of today’s learning English tools and electronic devices.
But before we look at the devices themselves, here are two great and increasingly traditional and often free English learning tools that you can get started with:
MP3 English lessons: There are a wide range of places you can download English lessons from and store on your MP3 player, such as an iPod. As most people now have iPods and they’re portable, you really can listen and learn wherever you are and whatever you are doing.
Audio tapes and CDs. These are great tools for learning English. All you need do is dust-off your cassette player, Walkman or CD player and you can listen and learn wherever you are. Audio CDs are great to keep in the car, so the next time you hit a traffic jam pop on your English language learning CD of choice and passively better your English skills.
Another great English language learning tool, which helps with reading, writing and speaking English is an electronic translator or dictionary. Again, as they are portable, they can be used in a variety of situations, from travelling on holiday, downtime on a business trip or even while talking with people in English. These devices have come on leaps and bounds since I first saw the international students at my school use them and the majority of the models on the market today will include fantastically accurate text-to-speech and voice recognition software. In fact, you can easily find many models which have vocabularies of more than 1 million words! I bet that’s more than you know in your own language and it’s certainly more English words than I know!
The great thing about these devices that make them fantastic English language learning tools is the fact that they come pre-programmed with numerous common expressions, phrases and grammatical constructs. This makes them great English learning tools and the two most popular models currently on the market are the Talking Electronic English Dictionary and the Audio Phrasebook. Both are handheld, include hundreds of thousands of words, definitions and thesaurus entries, let you view the word onscreen and can even read the word aloud to you.
For those that want devices which function strictly as English learning tools, there are devices which come pre-populated with the popular SAT exam word list and ones which come with grammar guides, exercises, tests and even English language learning games and quizzes!
If portability is not a key feature you require or you are looking for potentially free English learning tools, you could consider downloading English language software to your computer. You could in fact make this semi-portable by installing it on your laptop. The majority of this software will allow you to do advanced English translation inside the programmes you use day-to-day. For example, you will be able to translate English language websites, emails and documents. Many free-to-try English learning tools will have interactive language learning tools, study materials and even speaking and non-speaking dictionaries too. With the advancement in technology of mobile phones and PDAs, there is much development of English language learning tools for Smartphones such as the iPhone and Blackberries, Pocket PC and Palm OS, to name but a few.
By far the best free English learning tools may well also be the most fun: TV and radio! Sounds like every students dream right? Watching TV and learning English. In fact, watching and listening to English TV shows is a fantastic way to learn English. And once you’ve studied enough for the day, why not watch your favourite TV shows in your own language, but with the subtitles on; a great free English learning tool.
In summary, you will be able to find many great English language learning tools on the market and many free English learning tools too. Before you buy, make sure you research each device to ensure it fits with you and your lifestyle.