Word Surfing
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This page introduces a few of the sites who promote the Word Surfing concept.

If you wish to directly visit a page, simply click on the link ... or                                 scroll down the page if you would like to read a review.


Language Guide

Language Guide is a wonderful site. It's presentation of vocabulary items combines audio with graphics and text - and this integration will be especially useful for lower level learners beginning to wordsurf their way to good communication skills.

The 'Language Guide' vocabulary presentations, which are available in many languages, are simply excellent - and their use of a rollover feature with the cursor is, as far as I know, the first of it's kind on the internet. This feature is enormously useful and can help to make a interesting game out of the initial vocabulary acquisition process.  

The English vocabulary guide is presented here ...

Audio Pictionary-English ...( with Interface set for French students )

Learning the thousands of words needed to be comfortable in a language is a great challenge. The vocabulary guides are in essence virtual worlds. Users visit different parts of this world (i.e. insects, the family, the farm). They can then place the cursor over any of the images and hear their names pronounced and see them spelled out. In some pages, a notepad is displayed next to the title. Placing the cursor over this notepad will reveal a list of supplementary vocabulary .

The Language Guide is also expanding other useful features including Grammar and Readings.

E.g. Spanish Grammar Guide ... ( with Interface set for English students )

So far introductory grammar guides have been developed for French and Spanish ( audio hasn't been fully integrated yet). Users of these guides, can hear the pronunciation of sentences and words by placing the cursor over them. The guides also feature interactive audio based quizzes as well as additional features. They eventually hope to sponsor the creation of guides for all the world's major languages.

E.g. Graded French Readings ... ( with Interface set for English students )

The readings help users develop comprehension skills by allowing them to hear the reading of a text, manoeuver within the sound track and listen again to difficult phrases - as well as see the text of what is being read. In addition, the readings allow students to build vocabulary and develop reading skills. Readings are only available for learning French at the moment but they hope to eventually create extensive readings in different languages, tailored for different levels of fluency.

"Language Guide" is a collaborative project that aims to make available extensive free resources for learning many different languages. It is being coordinated and operated by Language Revolution, a 501 (c) non-profit organization based in Austin, Texas. All the voices you hear on the site are from volunteers. The word lists used for the vocabulary guides as well as most of the grammar guides were compiled by volunteers or with the help of volunteers.

It's survival and future development depend on volunteers and donations.             Please help if you can.

Using English

USING ENGLISH provides resources for learning the English language for ESL, EFL, ESOL, and EAP students and teachers. This excellent site includes: glossary of terms, forums, free language software, and articles.


* Word Checker* - Enter a word to check up on how it is used in English. It gives information on parts of speech, usage, register, style, collocation, meaning and grammar. 

*Online text analysis tool* - which give you statistics about a text including word count; unique words; number of sentences; average words per sentence; lexical density; and the Gunning Fog readability index. Copy and paste any text to see a statistical breakdown of it.

*The links archive* - contains hundreds of English language resources for ESL students and teachers alike. Divided into categories, you can take a look at some of the best language sites available.

*Up to the minute education news stories* - from around the UK and the US.

*A collection of some of the best resources*available on the web to help you learn how to study effectively.

*A selection of short tips* - on various aspects of the English language, with examples...  plus more tips about taking exams and tests.

*Support area* -  for anything to do with UsingEnglish.com, including the forum and the various software downloads available.Ask your questions about the English language here and receive expert help and advice from our language teachers and experts 24 hours a day.

*Free grammar and vocabulary exercises*for English as a Second Language (ESL) and English language teachers and instructors to use in the classroom or other teaching environment.

*A selection of printable handouts and instant lesson plans* - for use in ESL classes of various levels and types.


Polyglot allows you to find people ready to exchange languages with you.

You can search for penpals according to age, gender, location and hobbies . The forums at the site are very active - and the postings there always seem to be of a positive nature.

The chat room is also used a lot too.

Polyglot is fun and fully customizable and you can choose your own icons, styles. You can also post your own Polyglot translations … so that more people speaking your language can become members.

It’s an absolutely free opportunity to help yourself and others at the same time.

So it’s well worth visiting.

My Language Exchange

My Language Exchange is a community that lets you find a partner and practice your second languagewith a native speaker who is learning your language.

It hosts your online practice with lesson plans, how-to guidelines written by

an expert in language exchange learning. Tools include text chat rooms,

phrasal hangman word games, bulletin boards, a multilingual editor for

inserting accented roman characters and links to a machine translator.

A language exchange is two or more people who speak different languages practicing each other's language. For example, an English speaker who is learning French will do a language exchange with a French speaker who is learning English. There are many ways to practice in a language exchange.

My Language Exchange uses the Cormier method of language exchange that has been proven for 3 years at the C.E.L.M. language school in Montreal, Canada. In this method, small mixed groups of native speakers of two languages spend half the time speaking in one language and half the time in the other language. Activities are structured to ensure all areas of language acquisition are exercised such as vocabulary, pronunciation and listening comprehension. In addition, the activities in the Cormier method are designed to enable students to discover the "conversation culture" - how native speakers of the other culture interact. The method relies on ensuring the students have fun and are relaxed to make language practice more enjoyable and therefore more effective.

There are always lots of good new language teaching ideas out there somewhere … but usually it’s hard for them to reach people on a wide scale due to the conservatism and complexities of the larger educational publishing houses. These businesses tend to rely on tried and tested book formulas that are virtually guaranteed to produce a large volume of sales. They are, after all, trying to maximise their profits … and new ideas are normally seen as risky ventures that are highly unlikely to produce volume sales without a great deal of marketing expense. New ideas therefore tend to get rejected until seen to be proven popular elsewhere. So … if you’re interested in sharing any good new ideas with others, it may well be worth exploring other possibilities.

eBooks World

eBooks World is an exciting new opportunity within the educational world – and one that will soon be making Word Surfing ideas more widely available to people. ( further details to appear here as soon as we are ready to go to print)

eBooks World

Specializing in publishing materials by teachers for teachers

eBooks World is an online publishing business which provides the opportunity to authors to publish in an e-book format as well as print on demand (POD). Our main focus is on the education sector and we operate worldwide.

E-publishing is available to everyone although as much care must be taken as with traditional print publishing to ensure that the finished product is of a very high standard. It is difficult to get a contract with one of the traditional publishing houses and this is where e-publishing fills the gap.

Traditional publishers are inundated with manuscripts and the rejection quota is high. Costs are an important factor and often submitted material is only suitable for a niche market – normally not financially viable. As an e-book, materials can be published much quicker, never go out of print and the author earns much more in royalties.

There are many teachers who have invested a lot of time and effort in developing materials for use in the classroom. Why shouldn´t these proven materials reach an even wider audience – a lot of other teachers would be grateful!

E-publishing with eBooks World: no set-up or hidden costs and always a non-exclusive agreement.

“E-book” stands for electronic book and has the same function as a printed book. It is used to inform, educate, teach, train and share ideas. They can be used in a variety of ways: manuals, reports, ezines, newsletters, promotion, presentations, tutorials, marketing, informational products and much, much more! There is no limit to the number of ways e-books can be used. If you start adding things other than just plain old text, such as graphics, sound, video and links, then what you have created is a multimedia product.

Sidebar: although more and more famous authors such as John Grisham and Frederick Forsyth are being published in an e-book format, it is the education sector which is leading the way in innovations and developments in this media.

Some unique features of e-books:

  1. quickly and easily distributed, and updated. Your e-book can easily grow and develop
  2. interactivity. Hyperlinks, sound and video allow the reader to become more involved with the piece than they would with traditional matter 
  3. immediately accessible. In a matter of seconds, an e-book can be downloaded at any time, day or night
  4. easy to navigate. Hyperlinks can be used both with the piece and to links on the internet
  5. allows total creative freedom. You are in charge of the look and feel of your work.

Print on Demand (POD)

eBooks World offers authors the possibility to publish his or her materials in the traditional manner: a printed version. An ISBN ensures that the book can be ordered by bookshops everywhere.

The advent of digitalisation has meant that it is now possible to print books far more quickly and cheaper than it used to be. POD allows publishers to print as many books as there are sales. As books are ordered, they are printed……on demand.

Currently, eBooks World offers various sizes of paperback versions – plus a complete range of bindings – with no difference in quality to those books found in the stores. We will be extending our programme to include hardback editions.

Food for thought at least – we look forward to hearing from you!


Paul East & Kevin Westbrook

eBooks World

Einsteinstr. 59

89077 Ulm / Germany

Tel: ++49 731 397 6976

Fax: ++49 731 397 6977

E-mail: info@ebooksworld.de
Web: www.ebooksworld.de