What should I read?

Magazines are a great way to improve your reading skills.  Most magazines focus on specific topics – sports, music, science, etc.  With short articles with high interest topics, even reading one or two a day will help you develop fluency.

If you want to read online sources, the following websites have a lot of high-interest, short articles.

Listening Practice

One of the hardest skills to develop when studying English is listening.  But like everything else, you get better if you practice.  There are a few sites I recommend

  1. Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Cafe – There are many kinds of listening activities from conversations to quizzes.  They come in three levels so you can find the level that matches your ability.  http://www.esl-lab.com
  2. TED talks –  These are wonderful talks about many, many topics – from ants to extreme sports, from music to war. They range from 3 – 18 minutes. – www.ted.com




Quizlet.com is a wonderful way to practice and learn English. It allows you to:

  • learn new vocabulary
  • practice listening skills
  • hear clear pronunciation of vocabulary
  • improve spelling

There are games and activities to help you learn – flashcards,  listening and spelling practice, a matching game, timed and speed games and quizzes.  This is the link to all 92 sets I have created (both Beginner and Level 2).


Give it a try.  It’s great!


Singing songs is a terrific way to improve your pronunciation.  There are many songs and singers that are easy to listen to and understand.  Below are songs that have grammar and topic from the Level 2 curriculum.  You can find these songs, often with the lyrics included, on YouTube.

  • Come fly with Me – Frank Sinatra
  • Don’t Worry, Be Happy – Bobby McFerrin
  • Just Haven’t Met You Yet – Michael Buble
  • Let it GoFrozen soundtrack
  • A Boy Named Sue –  Johnny Cash – this song is pretty fast
  • Tom’s Diner – Suzanne Vega
  • Hand in my Pocket – Alanis Morissette
  • Jolene – Dolly Parton (and Miley Cyrus)
  • At Last – Etta James
  • Count on Me – Bruno Mars
  • Smile – Nat King Cole
  • What a Wonderful World – Louis Armstrong


I have been asked for a list of movies that would be helpful for someone studying and learning English.  The following is a short list.  I suggest using the subtitles while you watch to help build vocabulary and understand pronunciation.  Enjoy!

  • Big Fish
  • Breakfast at Tiffany’s
  • Apollo 13
  • Casablanca
  • Dead Poet’s Society
  • Elf
  • The Freshman
  • Forest Gump
  • The Fugitive
  • Guess Who’s Coming to Dinner
  • Good Will Hunting
  • Groundhog Day
  • The Incredibles
  • It’s a Wonderful Life
  • Joy Luck Club
  • Legally Blond
  • My Big Fat Greek Wedding
  • My Cousin Vinny
  • Rain Man
  • Real Women have Curves
  • Rear Window
  • Rebel Without a Cause
  • Shrek
  • The Sixth Sense
  • Sleepless in Seattle
  • Smoke Signals
  • Stand by Me
  • A Streetcar Name Desire
  • The Sting
  • The Truman Show
  • Titanic
  • To Kill a Mockingbird
  • When Harry Met Sally
  • Witness
  • 12 Angry Men