Selectsoft Language Systems
has a CD-ROM
for Win/Mac called ďAmerican English."
It features an audio introduction and text help section in Italian. The
program is set up as a game, with points earned for correct answers.
There is no didactic instruction; it is designed as support or review
for book or lecture lessons. Topics covered include: colors, numbers,
telling time, food, simple phrases, etc. There is a choice between easy
and difficult levels. As an older program the graphics and animation are
simple and somewhat outdated, so you may be able to find the CD used on
ebay at bargain prices. The companyís web site also describes other CDs
and DVDs with full screen movies on many subjects.
Galswin Middle School Language Arts
www.integralmedia.com has a 2-CD course
designed for native
English speakers but is also suitable for advanced ESL learners.
Sophisticated graphics and animation combined with role-playing games
and the ability to create content and exercises make this an absorbing
format for young students. A recent visit to the companyís web site
redirected to another web site (the creatorís?), but used CDs are
available on the web from several sources.
www.readwritetype.com is actually a phonics and typing program but
is great for ESL students as well, who learn how to use all ten fingers
to type while playing games and learning simple words and phrases. The
cartoon characters speak fast and use colloquial expressions with a
Brooklyn accent but the subtle humor is highly entertaining as well as
educational. Note that older versions of this program donít work on WIN
XP. One of the best!
www.mediaport.it is a bilingual set of 4 CDs combining
adventure stories and
challenging games for pure
entertainment. By far the best software Iíve ever used for Italian
students, the companyís web site offers other programs that I plan to
try and report on in the future.
http://www.Pearson.ch/ is a series of DVDs with high-quality
animation and music specifically for younger ESL learners (make sure you
are ordering the Italian edition). A bit expensive and there are only
about 10 hours of material available so far, but well worth using.
newspaper Corriere della Sera has offered the "English Today"
series (23 booklets, DVDs & CD-ROMs) distributed by
and many Italians have bought it. The DVDs contain
interesting video segments with native English speakers as well as
grammar instruction with a "live" teacher. There are a few minor errors,
such as transcription of audio to text, but otherwise it's an excellent
product and a great motivator. Recommended.
"There is nothing on the web or on any bookshelf as
book Teach English in Italy."
- Carrie L.