Virtual Round Table Web Conference

Recording (20min only):

Join head writer and media director, Tara Benwell, on a guided tour of ESL-Library is an online library of resources for language learning teachers. It offers hundreds of ready-made lesson plans (English, French, Spanish) and over 2000 flashcards that can be organized in an online folder system, making it simple to add supplementary lessons and activities for a variety of classes. New content is added monthly, including MP3 files that can be downloaded and used in class. A weekly mini-podcast based on content from the library is FREE for English learners to access via the ESL-Library blog or iTunes. Student access will soon be available for select content. Join Tara to find out how to make the most of your ESL-Library subscription, and win a chance for a free yearly membership. A free trial access code will be provided for all attendees.

Tara Benwell is the head writer for and the media director for Red River Press. As well as keeping in touch with teachers through ESL-Library's twitter and Facebook community, she blogs and records the weekly mini-podcast for English learners. After graduating from the University of Toronto with an English Lit. degree, Tara received her TESL certification in Canada and went on to teach English in Vancouver. Tara has been a project manager, online administrator and ELT material writer since 2004.




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Comment by Tara Benwell on March 30, 2011 at 8:17pm

So sorry the first section of the recording was cut off. In the first few minutes I talked briefly about the launch of the NEW ESL-Library and a bit about the team. Here is a brief summary of what the recording didn't capture:

ESL-Library has a small team that is based in Canada and employs writers, artists, voice actors, and tech help from a talent pool around the world. ESL-Library began as ESL Images in 2002. President, Ben Buckwold started out as we all did. He was teaching English abroad when he realized how much work went into pulling together materials for language lessons.  His business, journalism, and teaching background helped him launch the site, and a team gradually formed around him. 


The focus in 2010 was to create a new user-friendly site with the same popular content and materials. Teachers can now find exactly what they are looking for and add it to their Mini-Library. They will also find many new tips and ideas in the new blog. In 2011, the team will be moving forward to offer interactive lessons, allowing teachers to assign student access. 


The live tour began in the Lesson Plan Library. After browsing the index I gave participants a sneak peak at Office Life, one of my favourite sections in the library. This section is perfect for Business English classes and features the ongoing storyline of Lee. In the first lesson Lee is hunting for a job and by the last lesson he is handing in his resignation letter. Downloadable audio is included.


Next I showed participants how they can add ESL-Library lessons to the online file folder called My Library. 

This feature allows teachers to stay organized. Keep separate file folders for all of your classes or specific needs (such as one for sub teachers and one for holidays). My Library is the perfect time saver.
For the rest of the tour, please watch the recording.
I apologize that the sound cuts out whenever our lovely moderator Shelly shares her thoughts. She talked about using the FREE 33 Brave Chilean Miner lesson in her class and how she thought the lesson was really high quality. We were so happy to hear this review. Shelly also shared a review of ESL-Library by Jason Renshaw, who recently subscribed to our site. His review came just in time for the Virtual Round Table conference, and we were so pleased to stumble upon it via Twitter. Check it ou!
If you attended the session, don't forget to email us!

A huge thank you to Heike, Berni, and Shelly for organizing the event. The Red River Press team learned so much and hopes to participate again at the next conference.
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