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Wednesday, July 26, 2023

Use context to understand meaning in the chaos of English

 Use context to understand meaning in the chaos of English

(context is king)

What is a paradox?

A paradox can be a rhetorical device or can mean a statement that is self-contradictory.

As a rhetorical device, paradox is “a statement or proposition that seems self-contradictory or absurd but in reality expresses a possible truth.” 

For example: My friend is worried because the more she sleeps, the more tired she feels in the morning instead of waking up well rested.  The idea that less is more seems contradictory, but the statement contains a truth.

What is a contradiction? [ kon-truh-dik-shuhn ]  noun

The act of contradicting; gainsaying or opposition: assertion of the contrary or opposite.

A contradiction is a situation or ideas in opposition to one another. Declaring publicly that you are an environmentalist but never recycling anything is an example of a contradiction.

Synonyms for contradiction:

conflict, difference, disagreement, discrepancy, dispute, inconsistency, confutation, contravention, defiance, denial, dissension, incongruity, negation, opposite, opposition, bucking, gainsaying

What is an oxymoron?

An oxymoron is also a noun that’s defined as “a figure of speech by which a seemingly self-contradictory effect, as in ‘cruel kindness’ or  ‘to make haste slowly.'” So when contradictory or opposing words are combined, that expression is an oxymoron. 

Additional examples of this rhetorical device include living death, bittersweet, toughlove.

What is a contronym ? [con·tro·nym]  noun  plural noun: contronyms

A word with two opposite meanings,  

e.g. sanction (which can mean both ‘a penalty for disobeying a law’  and  ‘official permission or approval for an action’).

What is a synonym for contronym?

Frequently described as "words that are their own opposites," contronyms 

(contranym is a variant spelling) are also known as Janus words, antagonyms, and autoantonyms. 

These are words that have developed contradictory meanings.

Contronym Examples:

Finished - Finished can mean completed, or ended or destroyed

All the dishes are washed so I am finished.

After the third knee injury his basketball career was finished.

Bound - Bound can mean “going to a destination” or “being restrained from movement.”

He is bound for pro sports.

The prisoner was bound by his wrists and ankles.

Fast - fast can mean quick, or stuck or made stable

The hummingbird flew very fast between flowers.

The old chewing gum was stuck fast to the sidewalk.

Buckle - Buckle can mean “to fasten or secure” or “to break or collapse.”

I made sure to properly buckle my daughter in her car seat.

The balcony buckled from the weight of too many spectators.

Left - Left can mean “leave” or “remain.”

They had left by lunch time

Expedia claims - only two seats are left.

Off - Off can mean “activated” or “deactivated.”

The alarm went off.

The alarms are off.

Throw out - Throw out can mean “to discard something” or “to offer something.”

I’m going to throw out these old shoes.

I’m going to throw out some ideas for you.

Wind up - Wind up can mean “to bring something to a conclusion or finish” or “to start something.”

Let’s wind up this meeting because it’s getting late.

You need to wind up the toy so it can start.

hypocrite - [ hip-uh-krit ] noun

A person who pretends to have virtues, moral or religious beliefs, principles, etc., that they do not actually possess, especially a person whose actions are opposite of stated beliefs.

A person who feigns some desirable or publicly approved attitude, especially one whose private life, opinions, or statements are opposite of their public statements.

Wednesday, July 12, 2023

How to Study English as a Second Language PLAN

First step " Choose your Goal" for learning English as a Second Language

Goals are your motivation. Goals can remind you of purpose and direction. Why do you need English as a second or third language. What do you wish to accomplish with English as a second language? Studying ESL requires thousands of hours of real effort - you need motivation and endurance to be able to study or work using the English language with native speakers.

Top 15 Goals for studying English as a second language

  • Immigrate into an English speaking country
  • Get hired at a first job
  • Be hired at a better company
  • Be promoted in your company
  • Sell and market your products to English speaking countries
  • Be able to operate a business completely in English.
  • Publish an authoritative business, scientific journal article in English
  • Be admitted and study in a North American university.
  • Be admitted and study in a North American university graduate program.
  • Travel independently in English speaking countries.
  • As an Artist, perform for English speaking audiences
  • Enjoy entertainment produced by English speaking artists
  • Use English instructions for computer applications. Surf the net in English
  • Score 950 on the Toeic test or 280 on the new Toefl exam
  • Study English Literature in the original text

Second step: "Select the best Learning Methods" - how you learn most efficiently

Examples of questions to determine "how you learn best"

  • What English can you learn the most while studying alone?
  • What English can you learn the most by studying in a group?
  • Can you listen once and remember the pronunciation and vocabulary?
  • Does it help to see pictures of nouns or action verbs demonstrated?
  • Do you have to write and repeat words to memorize vocabulary?
  • How many times and ways must you use a word to "know" its proper context?
  • How often do you have to repeat lessons?
  • Can you create and use mnemonics to remember lists
  • Can you benefit using accelerated English language learning methods
  • Does music or games help you to relax, making learning easier?

Third step "Form a Plan" use the best learning stages to reach study Goals

An example of a two year study plan with four stages to learn English:

  • (First stage - 6 months)
    Start with picture dictionaries to begin vocabulary, use the ESL in Canada  or Sentencemaster 1000 most used words list as the initial core vocabulary, start to study pronunciation by watching English TV, listen to taped conversations, for 1 - 2 hours each day.
  • (Second stage - 6 months)
    Add grammar, use the Blueprint for English Grammar Summary for the most important English Grammar points, start to study English punctuation, spelling, vocabulary studies, start to read newspapers/magazines, begin a vocabulary diary to add to your initial 1000 words the for 1 - 2 hours each day
  • (Third stage - 6 months)
    Add one hour of English conversation classes everyday for 6 months, review grammar and vocabulary, add to vocabulary diary each day.
  • (Fourth stage - 6 months)
    Travel to Canada for 400 hours of English conversation classes, perform some volunteer work, take a special interest course and travel using English.
  • (After the Two Year Plan)
    Continuing ESL education program with one English conversation class per week or start your own English Conversation Club, watch English News on TV, read English newspapers do your favourite hobby using English.

Fourth step "create a Cost & Benefit Analysis for your Plan"

  • What FREE English learning resources are available on the internet?
  • What FREE English learning resources are at the library, community or cultural centers?
  • What FREE English Learning clubs offer conversation classes?
  • What FREE English Language exchange clubs offer conversation classes?
  • Compare the costs of books, texts, tapes, Cd's for self-study.
  • Analyze the cost of instruction by tutors in a small group of 3 or 4
  • Analyze the cost of instruction at local English schools
  • Analyze costs of foreign travel and accommodation to study English abroad.

Fifth step "Start your Plan"

Email for help to plan your trip to study "English as a Second Language" ESL in Canada

Sunday, July 09, 2023

Accelerated English Language Learning Strategies

While language is one of the most important products of human evolution, it uses only a few of the many skills and senses available to our minds.

Our brains evolved to interpret, code and store very complex stimuli such as images, colors, structures, sounds, smells, tastes, touch, positions, emotions and language. The "Theory of Multiple Intelligences" asserts that there are 8 types of intelligence: interpersonal, intrapersonal, logical-mathematical, verbal-linguistic, spatial, bodily-kinesthetic, musical-rhythmic and naturalist.

In the traditional classroom environment most first and second language lessons always present in only one format - as words printed on a page with traditional instruction by grammar translation and rote memorization.

Accelerated English Learning language lessons attempts to correct this imbalance by including activities which allow for the activation of the other intelligences such as: sports which involve movement, use of colour on worksheets, creating songs and music, manipulation of objects with arts and crafts.

"Accelerated English Language Learning" is a very broad term in language education and encompasses many different strategies, procedures, techniques, methodologies and approaches.

Some "Accelerated English Language Learning" methods include: mind maps, reading to music, multiple intelligences theory, various memory techniques, mood music to influence the emotional and mental state of learners, learning environment setting, rhymes to aid learning, using patterns, neuro-linguistic programming and the use of activities, arts, crafts, sports and dramatic presentations.

One "Accelerated English Language Learning" strategy is the use of mnemonics as a memory tool. Mnemonics help students improve their memory. They help language students remember facts, order or the structure of information. The three fundamental building blocks of mnemonics are imagination, association and location.

Imagination is used to create and strengthen "word-image associations". The more vividly you imagine and visualize a situation, the more effectively the memory is stored for later access and use.

Association is the method by which you link items to be remembered to a way of remembering it. You can create associations by linking them using the same color, smell, shape, or feeling. You can create associations by placing them together, on top, merged, wrapped or interacting in a humorous fashion.

Location provides a context into which you can place information as a unit and a way of separating one mnemonic from another. For example, by setting one mnemonic in Toronto and another similar mnemonic with images of Vancouver, we can separate them with no danger of confusion. You can build the images and atmosphere of these cities into your mnemonics to strengthen the feeling of location.

Second language learning takes a lot of time and effort and motivation. Students who use the "Accelerated Learning" strategies and methods with the assistance of a professional tutor will learn more, save time, save money and enjoy English Language learning.

Learn English as a Second language with the ESL in Canada Study English Plan with Accelerated Language Learning Strategies, self-study, free English classes, professional tutors and accelerated learning English language methods. Email :