Saturday, February 28, 2015
Tuesday, February 24, 2015
Posted by Randall Davis at 9:17 PM
Saturday, February 7, 2015
Some of my English students say little children speak a different language, and they don't sound anything like the people in their textbooks. I agree. For that reason, I've added recordings of my children over the year to expose students to this NATURAL speech. In this conversation, my son (at the time, 4 years old) and I were talking about our visit to the zoo. Give it a try:
Posted by Randall Davis at 9:58 AM
Wednesday, February 4, 2015
Friday, January 23, 2015
Here is my newest listening activity on wedding plans. This man certainly has some unique ideas on how to plan a wedding and a honeymoon. Give it a try and leave your thoughts or impressions on this topic:
Posted by Randall Davis at 5:59 PM
Saturday, January 17, 2015
In many situations, students often look for extra help in the language studies, for example, from a private tutor, but you have to be careful who you choose. In this conversation, a private tutor finds himself in a very difficult situation with a woman for an unusual reason. Give the conversation a try:
Posted by Randall Davis at 5:23 PM
Tuesday, January 6, 2015
Friday, January 2, 2015
Tuesday, December 30, 2014
Monday, December 22, 2014
Wednesday, December 10, 2014
Monday, November 10, 2014
Friday, September 12, 2014
For me and my wife, marriage has been a
central and wonderful part of our lives, but all too often, people
simply plan for the wedding and honeymoon and don't realize the work it
takes to build a life together. I mean, marriage isn't like fishing:
you make a big catch and then you sit on the bank of life with little
care and effort. In my newest listening activity, I plan the role of a
man who absolutely has no idea about marriage and doesn't seem to listen
to his sister's advice. Give it a try:
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:26 AM
Wednesday, September 3, 2014
So, do you want to know what happened to your
classmates from years ago? Well, in my newest listening activity, two
old friends run into each other and plan to attend the next class
reunion. Give it a try:
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:50 PM
Monday, September 1, 2014
Friday, August 22, 2014
Thursday, August 7, 2014
I now have 75 culture videos on my Web site, esl-lab.com, and I always
appreciate your comments about them. Now, I am looking for more ideas on
future culture videos, so please share your suggestions. They are fun
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:24 AM
Thursday, July 31, 2014
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
Many people around the world enjoy caring for their animal companions, but how should you care for them out in public? Watch my newest video activity on the topic and share your ideas. Here are some of our pets on a walk in the mountains.
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:48 AM
Saturday, July 26, 2014
Although most people remember the humorous
listening activities on my Web sites, I have a number of topics that
deal with serious issues including drinking and the effects it can have
on families. Here is one example:
Posted by Randall Davis at 9:24 PM
Thursday, July 10, 2014
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:14 AM
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
Monday, May 12, 2014
Providing services for people who deal with different disabilities is an important issue in society today. One of situations that faces many is the ability to drive and get to where they need to go. In my newest video, I discuss this specific issue as it pertains to life in Utah.
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:17 PM
Tuesday, May 6, 2014
Above all else, I have been asked about 232,432 times (somewhat joking here) by students on the best and fastest way to learn English. Some students are frustrated by their lack of progress or want to pass a test to enter a good university. There is no single answer, but I have some suggestions on what has worked for me and for my own students. Don't be looking for any easy answer. It takes work, but here are my ideas. Share what has worked for you, too.
Posted by Randall Davis at 6:29 PM
Friday, May 2, 2014
No matter where we currently are in life, we
often want to reach higher goals (what I call, "rising to higher
ground). This includes learning English. However, just with running in
the mountains, you often have to pass through deep valleys to
reach the summit or top of the mountain. Life can be very hard, but
hard times are really what define and make us who we are. Without the
hard times, we don't progress. Here is a video I created while running
in the mountains of Utah on the topic.
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:25 AM
Tuesday, April 29, 2014
At times, people often make bad choices that lead to negative consequences. So, how can people repair their lives when things go wrong? Watch my newest video on the topic:
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:46 PM
Monday, April 28, 2014
So, you might wonder: Does Randall drive in a nice, fancy car to work every day? Huh, guess again! I take the train just like so many people. Watch my newest video on the topic and learn more about my trip to work. How do you get to school and work? Share your own experiences:
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:41 PM
Friday, April 25, 2014
What? Modern dance? Marching band? Floral design and auto mechanics?
Many international students are often surprised at the unique types of
classes sometimes offered in schools in the United States. In my newest
video, I introduce a class that you may never see in some places, but it
is popular for many students. Give it a try. Do schools in area or
country offer something similar? Share your comments:
Posted by Randall Davis at 6:22 PM
Saturday, April 19, 2014
Have you ever had problems with neighbors ? Well, developing good friendships doesn't happen overnight, and there can be cultural differences from country to country and place to place. Watch my newest video on the topic:
Posted by Randall Davis at 11:54 AM
Monday, April 14, 2014
One of the main reasons I started my Web site
(esl-lab.com) was to provide students opportunities to hear children's
voices. You don't usually hear young voices in most English textbooks.
Here is one of my original recordings made many years ago, but it is
still one of my favorites:
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:43 PM
Tuesday, April 1, 2014
Have you ever had a bad day? Well, in my
newest listening activity, a man has an unusual encounter at the front
door. Something very unexpected. How would you feel in his situation?
Give it a try:
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:16 AM
Friday, March 21, 2014
Traveling in a new country can be a WILD
experience, and even in your own country, you can meet a lot of
interesting people. In my newest listening conversation, join this woman
on the ride of her life with her new friend. How would you feel in this
situation? What would you do?
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:54 AM
Saturday, March 8, 2014
A common topic of discussion is the use of
cell phones in our daily lives. In my newest listening activity, meet a
young man who has an interesting perspective on cell phones and why he
wants one. Do you know anyone like him? Enjoy:
What are your thoughts on the topic? Is a cell phone a necessity in today's life for all people? How about children under 10 years old? Should teenagers pay some of the expense? Share your ideas.
Posted by Randall Davis at 9:22 AM
Thursday, March 6, 2014
Here's my newest
listening activity. If you have ever had a terrible day at an airport,
then you might understand how this man feels . . . except he caused his
own problems. He didn't think and prepare ahead. Give it a try:
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:08 AM
Thursday, February 27, 2014
Friday, February 14, 2014
Happy Valentine's Day! Having only been married 25+ years (which seems like a short time), keeping a relationship alive requires a lot of patience, selflessness, and compassion. And yes, love in a marriage only gets better with effort. You don't have to be perfect; just willing to understand. Here is a video I created on the topic:
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:25 AM
Tuesday, February 4, 2014
With Valentine's Day around the corner, I thought I would share some of my favorite listening activities on the topic. And some advice to men: don't just give flowers one time a year. Make every day special.
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:07 PM
Saturday, January 11, 2014
Thursday, December 19, 2013
To everyone around the world, our family would
like to wish you a Merry Christmas and a joyous holiday season. May our
hearts be turned to those in particular who are in need of love and a
kind word during this season and every day of the year.
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:41 PM
Thursday, November 28, 2013
Happy Thanksgiving Day in the US! I am sure
many countries around the world have a similar holiday in which people
remember the things that they are most thankful for. For me, I am
grateful for every breath I take, the sun coming up in the morning, and
most importantly, my family. What about you? What are you most thankful
for? Share your thoughts.
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:20 AM
Thursday, November 21, 2013
Black Friday is quickly approaching in the
United States (this year, on November 29th). But what is it? Watch my
video on the topic and share any experiences you have had on this day. Personally, I never go because I don't want to fight the crowds, and my sanity is worth more than cheap electronics. Instead, I often run in the mountains. It's much more peaceful.
Posted by Randall Davis at 5:48 PM
Saturday, November 9, 2013
Because Christmas is only a month away, I thought I would start suggesting listening activities on my Web sites that deal with this topic. Here is the first one. I enjoy it because it has the voices of some of my children when they were much younger. Good practice of young, natural speech: http://esl-lab.com/tradition/traditionrd1.htm
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:28 AM
Thursday, October 31, 2013
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
I started my Web site 14 years ago at the end
of 1997. So, what is the oldest listening activity on my site? Well, one
of them is certainly one of my favorites called "Saving the Earth." I
recorded with my daughter. My kids have contributed their voices over
the years to make the site interesting to users.
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:08 PM
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
a bad roommate can be an awful experience. Imagine someone who every cleans up, holds wild parties until the early morning hours, and eats all of your food. What would you do? How do you work through such situations?
In my newest video activity, you can meet such a guy. Watch and then share your ideas on this.
Posted by Randall Davis at 5:52 AM
Friday, October 11, 2013
Do you want to SMILE a little? My newest video activity is on homestay experiences, but this video is CERTAINLY different than any other I have created. I am experimenting with video puppet shows, and in this one, you hear my voice AND see me sleeping on the sofa as the unusual roommate. Tell me if you think these are useful. I might create more.
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:16 AM
Saturday, October 5, 2013
Last weekend, my wife and I completed another marathon, and at the mile 23 (37km) point in the race, we jumped in the air to celebrate the accomplishment (and to forget the pain). Just like in life, we all encounter and pass through difficult times (and this includes learning another language like English). However, if we are persistent and never give up, we can see progress in our lives. You can see a full report of the race at http://www.hikinginutah.com/huntsvillemarathon-2013.htm.
Posted by Randall Davis at 6:55 AM
Monday, September 16, 2013
Now that many students are back to school around the world, I often students and teachers take a look at my self-study guide at http://esl-lab.com/guide.htm. This page lists most of listening activities by topic, so you can find exactly the type of practice you need. Take a look, and I wish you all the best in your study this year.
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:38 PM
Tuesday, August 13, 2013
Saturday, July 27, 2013
With the growing use of Smart phones and other portable devices, more and more people are accessing the Internet this way instead of computers. With this in mind, and I have just finished making changes to 175+ listening activities on www.esl-lab.com, so you can view/listen to my content just about anywhere. Enjoy! Randall
Posted by Randall Davis at 12:16 PM
Thursday, July 4, 2013
At times, I sometimes forget the many freedoms we have and enjoy in the United States, but these freedoms also come with responsibility. In other words, we have to freedom to choose our leaders, to share our religious beliefs with others, and the freedom to peacefully protest laws that we feel do not sure our interests the best.
However, these freedoms do not allow us to infringe on the rights of others. If people want to worship God in different ways than I do, then I can respect that and allow them to do so as they may. They can build their places of worship and meet freely. Personally, I think such activities can enrich the lives of other people and broaden our understanding of the world around us.
By upholding these freedoms and ensuring that others enjoy them too, we can bring about greater peace and compassion to others.
Here is one video activity on holidays in the US where freedom is remembered:
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:33 AM
Monday, May 27, 2013
In the United States, Memorial day falls on the final Monday of the month of May. On this day, people remember those who died in military conflict and war in the preservation of our freedoms. In fact, freedom is never free, but we must seek to maintain it. People often go to cemeteries and leave flowers, small token items to remember the departed, and clean the headstone and grave.
The holiday has expanded to now include visiting the graves of any friend or family member who has died, and it can be a time when people reflect on the lives of those who have passed on before them.
For others, it is also a day to kick off the summer season with family gathers and barbecues.
So, do you have a similar holiday in your country? If so, how do people celebrate this day? Share your ideas.
Posted by Randall Davis at 3:27 PM
Saturday, April 6, 2013
I am always trying to think of new listening tasks to help English students expand and improve their language skills. One type of task is a combination of a PowerPoint slide and video into a mini-lecture on a particular topic.
Here is one example of this new project which I will continue to experiment throughout this year:
Posted by Randall Davis at 3:44 PM
Sunday, March 17, 2013
Winter's grip on our state in Utah is slowing falling away as we now are entering spring. However, because we live in the mountains at a relatively high altitude, it isn't uncommon to see snow in the valleys well into April and perhaps May. Here is a video activity on the weather in my state and what you can expect.
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:19 PM
Friday, February 15, 2013
Posted by Randall Davis at 8:47 AM
Friday, January 25, 2013
The types of jobs both men and women hold in different countries are not universal, and often cultural, social, and religious factors play a role in employment decisions. Even government policy and rules often determine how employment decisions can be made. What might be an acceptable hiring/employment practice in one place might not be true in another country.
In this listening activity, we discuss these issues in a somewhat humorous way. Give it a try.
Posted by Randall Davis at 10:07 AM
Saturday, January 5, 2013
I want to wish everyone a Happy New Year. May you be able to reach the goals that you set. You might enjoy my newest video activity that discusses how you can succeed in your resolutions for the new year:
Feel free to share your own resolutions for the new year and the reasons why you want to make those changes in your life.
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:37 AM
Friday, December 28, 2012
With every new day come new beginnings. Yes, a new year is quickly approaching, and it can allow us to rethink and make new commitments, but if we falter (which as humans we do), then we should see the coming of every new moment an opportunity to better ourselves and help those around us.
Happy New Year! --- Randall
Posted by Randall Davis at 9:17 PM
Tuesday, December 11, 2012
One of the greatest challenges facing English students is the ability to understand, interpret, and, where appropriate, use idiomatic expressions and slang. This is often due to the face that slang usage is so dependent on the content, your relationship with your conversation partner, and other social cues. Because you can't avoid encountering such language, I created a Web site to help students understand slang more. Give EZSlang.com a try.
Posted by Randall Davis at 7:06 AM
Thursday, December 6, 2012
Over the past 14 years of creating online
listening activities, there have only been a couple of times when I had
all of my children appear in the same recording. Here is an example that
goes along with the Christmas season and the meaning that it has in our
family and many others like ours.
For us, most activities center on our family and on those in need around us. When I speaking of certain needs, these could be financial, emotional, or even spiritual. We have been the recipient of so much kindness over the years, and I feel in a privilege to do what I can to help others.
Posted by Randall Davis at 1:45 PM