Tuesday, August 14, 2007

Reading: Extensive Verses Intensive

For many international students, their past experience in reading has been very intensive reading well beyond their abilities to comprehend and digest the material. In other words, teachers sometimes give students a newspaper article on some abstract topic, and then the students struggle with their dictionaries in hand looking up every other word to understand the passage. This is very discouraging and counterproductive. On the other hand, extensive reading is reading for pleasure at or below the level of students so they learn the joy of reading and are able to see vocabulary and grammar again and again for everyday use.

With this in mind, what materials have you found most useful in learning or teaching reading skills. For me, I created a website, www.dailyesl.com, to help students see common expressions and vocabulary in common situations. Please share your ideas on the topic of reading.



  1. I am an ELS student from china.I found it is very difficult for me to speak something in the right way. I am preparing for IELTS and the reading is not easy to understand intensively. Would you please give me some advices on these two issues? Thank you.

  2. I suppose (from my own experience) if you want to read quickly - find an interesting topic for you. For example I like fantasy books and "A song of ice and fire" was the most impression books I've ever read. It was difficult, as the book is above my level of language, but it was so interesting that i've read all books of main line. It was difficult in the begining but with every page I've got into the way of book, the words began to repeat and I havent noticed how the books came to finish.


Thanks for posting a comment. I appreciate your interesting in sharing your ideas.



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