English Idioms Illustrated are memorable comic images to learn and remember idioms, as the proverb goes, “a picture is worth a thousand words”…
Not only are the images that accompany the idioms laboriously created but they also appear with a detailed description about the history of the proverb. So while the pictures enable visual learners to store and retrieve the idioms, the text enables analytic learners to put logic to the origins and lexical meaning of the proverb.
Available for iPad, iPhone and iPod Touch.
If you are experimenting with learners using the video mode of their iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad, I can highly recommend this app. Horizon Video Recorder allows the user to capture and create a better quality clip because no matter how your device is held, it will always film in horizontal mode allowing for a clearer image in playback mode without cutting out some of the content.
An incredible voice activated translation app that can be used to help with pronunciation, lexis and encouraging learners to experiment with learning English inside and outside the classroom.
Learners speak into their devices – iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad, and the app provides an audio translation of what was said. There are 42 available languages. Some translations are not explicit as they could be but I still think it is an amazing app.
I have used iTranslate Voice in a grouped class race activity where I have boarded a couple of phrases in Spanish for students to translate into English and shout out once they think they have the correct answer. I then put jumbled phrases in English on the board for learners to order the by using iTranslate to hear the phrase in L1 to check what the correct order of the words should be.
British Council Learn English Grammar (UK Edition) is a great way for learners to practice their grammar structures in their own time outside class. Great for making use of commuting time to brush up on grammar skills while on the move. Any queries can be verified with teachers in class. Elementary, Intermediate and Advanced level packs available.
Available for Android on Google Play, Windows Phone and iPhone, iPad, and iPod Touch.
iTranslate for iPad, iPhone and iPod touch is a quick and easy translation app that allows learners to choose from 92 languages from Burmese to Swahili, and switch between them depending on where they come from.
I have found the app useful with low-level learners who are unable to communicate their ideas with ease and find another way to say the same thing. By putting in the words in their L1, iTranslate gives learners a visual record of new lexis, that they can consult again in their own time by referring to the “history” of the words they have looked up.
The Phrasal Verbs Machine from Cambridge ensures that phrasal verbs will never be the same again! Learners select the correct phrasal verb from the five options given by the Phrasal Verb Machine, in response to the animation shown. The animation is in a 1920’s style as is the machine and the accompanying music. Hours of fun and a great way to engage learners in their own time so they feel confident and motivated to incorporate phrasal verbs more frequently in their discourse.
Available for iPad, iPhone, iPhone Touch and Android on Google Play.
A great app that exposes learners to authentic language content through short audio and video episodes. Interactive audio scripts are available for every episode with highlighted target language. The series include “How To” say things right in different situations, “Professional Podcasts” aimed at improving English in the workplace, and a “Magazine” that tackle issues like feeding the world.
Available for Android, iPad, iPhone and iPod touch.
Nutshell enables learners to create short cinematic stories by using 3 stored images, personalised captions and a voice recording. Unfortunately the app is only currently available for iOS 8 which limits its usage.
Fun, creative and good for engaging learners.
The iBooks Author app enables the user to create multimedia material with static and dynamic images, voice threads, audio and text. I see numerous possibilities for it to be exploited because the learning potential and affordances it provides are endless and think it is a particularly interesting resource. However, the one principle drawback of the software is its limitation to Macs and iPads.
I have used iBooks author with learners by setting them a homework task to create a digital travel brochure. The students were highly motivated at the prospect of using technology as a tool to demonstrate their abilities in English, and the end results were impressive. I think there is also great potential to use the software to practice pronunciation by using the voice thread function and video.