Elementary Web Sites for English Language Learners
by Judie Haynes
Attention all elementary ESL and classroom teachers! Do you want to discover great web sites for the English language learners in your class? Here is a painless way to give students English language practice in the classroom or at home.
There are not many websites designed especially for elementary-age English language learners. In order to provide these students with extra practice in English, it is necessary to examine sites intended for English native speakers.
How do students use these sites? First, I introduce a web site in ESL class and allow students to try out a few activities. In order to do this, you will need to have a computer in your room or access to a computer lab. I use wireless laptops in my room so that students can each look at their own screen.
Directions for accessing the site are handed out. Students then work on the site on their own in their mainstream classroom or, if they have a computer, at home. They print out results or make a screen shot and bring it to me the next day. Some games can not be printed or saved. In that case, I ask students to practice a skill for homework and do the game again quickly in class the next day. In some cases, the information on a site will need to be modified for English language learners. Some of the sites listed will not be suitable for beginners in a particular grade cluster.
Here is a list of some of the sites my students are using.
Sites for Grades PreK-2
- Literacy Center.net - an early childhood language learning site. Includes French, Spanish, and German.
- Starfall.com- Reading instruction and reading games for students in Pre-K-1. It's hard to believe this site is free.
- ReadTodayJoin the reading revolution! Teach a child to read.
- Continent song Good for students learning the names of the continents.
- Reading is Fundamental.This site has many stories for Pre-K-2 students.*
- Storyplace.org -a site with online stories and activities. Grades pre-K-Kindergarten.*
- Kiz ClubStories about a variety of topics for grades 1-3
- Online Story Time-This site is more for teachers but has many online stories.
- Martha Speaks.This site is good for beginning ELLs in grades k-2. It is advertised as a pre-school site but the stories are suitable forK-1 students.
- British Council Stories -This site has many stories that are read aloud. Check for spelling and pronunciation differences.
- Games on PBS Kids - Games for K-2. "WordPlay" can be used for students in grades 3-4.
- Arthur -Sequencing activity where students hear a story and put pictures in order.
- Storyline Online -A terrific site with stories read by actors from the ScreenActors' Guild. Grades 1-4.*
- Reading-A-To-Z - This is a commercial site with free books that you can download and print. Grades 1-4.
- Raz-kids.com-Reading and listening activities for elementary age students.*
- Tumblebook Library - Click on "stories." A large collection of stories from the Los Angeles Public Library. All grades.
- Clifford - Activities pre-K-2.Try the reading and writing section with students in grades 2-3.
- Videos - Short Clifford videos. Click on "See and Hear." Grades K-2.
- Berenstain Bears Games and Songs - Great activities for young children including word games, songs and puzzles. Grades K-2.
- Game Goo - Learning that sticks - Great learning games for young children. Grades K-2.
- The Reading Lady Includes short plays for students in grades 1-2.*
- Enchanted learning Printable books and for students in grades K-4.
- Discover Science Simulations Science content from Houghton Mifflin Science Series.
Sites for Grades 3-5
- MadLibs for Advanced Beginners in Grades 3-5
- KidsKnowit Network - Learning videos for students is grades 3-6.
- Reading is Fundemental. Look at the writing activities for students in Grades 2-5.
- Grammar Gorillas for Advanced Beginners in Grades 3-5
- Stories for Kids for Advanced Beginners in Grades 3-5
- Kiz ClubStories about a variety of topics for grades 1-3
- Bookhive.com -This site has multicultural children's stories told by famous storytellers. Be sure to click on "Listen to a story." For Grades 2-5
- Songs for Kids - Grammar songs for students in Grades 2-5.
- Postcards from Buster - See BusterÃ¯Â¿Â½s adventures from various places in the U.S. Each city has video, audio, map skills and games. Grades 3-5.*
- Arthur -Games from Arthur. Grades 2-5.
- Captain Underpants - Make a comic. Grades 2-4
- Scholastic - A program for kids to make flashcards. Grades 3-8.
- Surfing the Net with KidsSite with games and puzzles in different subject areas.
- Write a book report - Students make a book report sandwich. Grades 4-8.
- Literactive This site has great oral stories and games for grades 1-12.
- Spelling Wizard - Use spelling words to make a word search or sentence scramble. Grades 3-6.
- The Story Starter, Jr. - Select a story starter for students in grades 4-12.
- Tumblebook Library - Online stories read from the Los Angeles Public Library. All grades.
- Poetry - Gives examples of different types of Poetry.
- Science vocabulary - Label pictures using science vocabulary. Grades 4-8.*
- Songs and Rhymes- Songs for students in all grades.
- Songs for ELLs with words.* Grades 3-12.
- Word Game Intermediate students in grades 5-8.
- Owl online This is a good grammar site for 6-12
- FunBrain reading Intermediate students in grades 5-8.
- Zoom - Games, activities and science experiments from the TV Show Zoom. Grades 4-6.
- U.S. Symbols - U.S. Government information from Ben's Guide. Grades 3-5.
- Social Studies Vocabulary Games - Vocabulary from U.S. government. Grades 3-5.
- Spiders. Spider activities for kids. Gr. 3-6.
Sites for Grades 4-8
- Listening Activities - Designed for older students but pronunciation and listening activities could be used for students grades 4 and up.*
- iKnowthat This link takes you to map and social studies activities for grades 5-12.
- BrainPop-This site has some free sections to teach grammar. Look up "nouns" and watch the video. Grades 5-8. Grades 3-8. *
- Multicultural Stories -Stories from around the world by Nick Jr. Grades 3-8
- Brainteasers, Puzzles and Riddles - Kids' page from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Grades 5-8
- Translation Site - Students can bookmark this site to translate words from English to their native language. Grades 3-12.
- Interactive games and activities- Social Studies Games from Ben's Guide to the U.S Government. Grades 5-8.
- Audio Comprehension - An audio concentration game for Grades 4-12.*
- Homophone game - Match homophones in this concentration game.* Grades 4-8.
- Wordsearches - Wordsearches on U.S. Presidents. Grades 4-8.
- Movie Trailers Listening activities using movie trailers for Grades 5-12.
- Vocabulary Vocabulary games - From Interesting Things For ESL Students, aa collection of vocabulary games for Grades 6-12.
- WordBuilderGreat site for phonics practice. Grades 4-12
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