jueves, 26 de mayo de 2011

Good Reads

This is a post for Ana, who has been an excellent  (though quiet) student throughout the year and who is likely to be a great doctor in the future.

Undoubtedly, the best way to learn English is through practice but when you cannot practise it with native speakers in an English-speaking country, you have to find some other ways to make up for it, and that means, basically, reading and listening.

If you like the cinema, one of the best ways is watching films, videos or documentaries - and there are plenty of them for free in the internet; listening to songs and singing along is another of my favourite ways to get better at English. As for books, here are some suggestions.

  • Classic reader is an online library with thousands of free books by authors such as Dickens, Austen, Shakespeare and many others.
  • Read Print is a directory that catalogs books that are freely available online; there are some 3,500 authors cataloged, with a wide selection of books, poems, plays and short stories.
  • Forgotten Books offers lots of classic works as free PDF downloads.
  • Learn Out Loud offers over 3000 free audio and video titles including  free audio books, lectures, speeches, sermons, interviews... Most audio titles can be downloaded in digital formats such as MP3 and most video titles are available to stream online.

Click here to go to a former post of mine where you can find a few web pages with lots of information about free audiobooks online. I would like to add one more page, Books Should Be Free which allows you to download some free audio books to either an iPod or an MP3; for example, Mansfield Park by Jane Austen

But the most convenient page for students, in my view,  is Google eBook Store. It is a great place to find free and paid ebooks to read on your computer or iPad. What makes it great is a helpful feature: when you're reading a Google eBook title on your computer you can highlight and right click on words to find definitions and translations of those words. When you select definition, you also have the option to hear your highlighted word pronounced or you can search the web for information about that word... See how it works in one of these books, Aesop´s Fables or Jane Austen´s Pride and Prejudice

Some online books include videos, which makes reading really entertaining. Check this one, for instance, Philogelos: The Laugh Addict, the 21st century adaptation of the world's oldest joke book. This edition includes an academic introduction by Prof. Bill Berg, videos of Jim Bowen performing some of the gags in front of a live audience in London and a selection of the jokes themselves.

Do you know any other pages you would like to share with us?

3 comentarios:

  1. Hi Rosa. The books are long, and I don´t have enough time.
    So, I prefer read and listening things more shorts.
    At the "BBC Learning English", http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/ , for example, the section "Six minutes English" ttp://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/general/sixminute/ have interesting, and free, text and audios.

  2. Ana Rodríguez31 mayo, 2011

    Even if there are only a few books in English,I think it is quite a good page to download books in Spanish language.

  3. Thank you very much, Ana, I´ll have a look. By the way, you are the the Ana I mention in the post.


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