Thank you to tutor Terri Gillespie for this information about videos for tutors to use with ELL learners!
Terri writes: “I finally found a set of simple, clever videos on YouTube, in American English with English subtitles. They're like short sitcoms with real-life conversation & the pacing is good for beginners - slow but not draggy.
There are a number of files ("tapes"), each containing one or more short videos featuring the same cast. Each episode is vocabulary-focused as part of the story. For example, in the one on clothing & colors, Cheryl & Marie have bought new clothes for a party and are trying to get Bob to tell them which ones he likes--and he couldn't care less. “
Terri is experimenting with the best way to use them. Her ideas below are excellent for listening and speaking!
1. First I explained the characters and what we were going to see. Then we watched the video 2x to get the idea.
2. For the next class, I typed out the content as a script so they could read along. We watched the video again, then went over the script to make sure they understood all the words.
3. Next class we'll watch it again. Then we'll read the script aloud in class, making sure that everyone gets a chance to play one of the roles. Most of the videos seem to divide into 3 short acts.
Incorporating these YouTube files into lessons is a super way to change things up and add some variety to lessons. Learners get to hear people with other accents, relate to situations and get a few chuckles!
A learner suggested a video series called "Ingles para flojos" (English for lazy people). She listens to it in the car.
I've encouraged them to spend 20 minutes a day listening to radio or TV in English, just for the experience of listening, even if they don't understand much.