A Year in the Life of an ESL Student is an essential addition to the advanced level ESL classroom. By studying the varied and interesting dialogues and completing the challenging exercises, students will dramatically improve their comprehension and usage of everyday idioms and advanced level vocabulary. The book follows Andre, a student from Switzerland, as he spends a year completing his English studies at a private language school in North America: from his arrival at the airport, to getting around the city, to attending school, to hanging out with his classmates. All of the situations and related language are real and directly relevant to adult ESL students. So join Andre on his one-year adventure. It's about to begin just outside the airport terminal.
A little disappointed
By R. Rust - May 28, 2009
I purchased this book based on the product information and all the good reviews, so I was surprised to find it disappointing in a couple ways. But first the positive.
The author chose some excellent real-life situations for framing the idioms and language. He also includes plenty of repetition and reinforcement through follow up worksheets based on the introductory dialogue for each unit. This is sometimes a weakness in other idiom presentations.
The disappointment lies in the over abundance of idioms in each dialogue and the sense that too many of them are consequently forced into non-natural usages. Those of us who teach English have all experienced the over zealous language learner who wants to sound natural and tries to do so by throwing idioms into every other sentence. That is how some dialogues in this book sound. By doing so, it feeds the non-native speaker's belief that idioms are used constantly in speech rather than aiding them in sounding more... read more
Good application of the lexical method.
By K. McGue "in tokyo" - November 19, 2006
Michael Lewis caused quite a stir in the world of ESL when he published his "The Lexical Approach" in 1993. Lewis's point was basically thus: ESL students are force feed too much English grammar. The idea that grammar can be mastered and then students fill in the blanks with vocabulary is na?ve, according to Lewis, and makes it difficult for students to understand natural English phrases such as "Let's have a coffee," because students have only studied "Shall we drink coffee?" Having taught English to Japanese students, who are taught grammar and only grammar in high school, I found this to be a huge obstacle. Lewis's book caused a huge sensation on the ESL teaching community, and many teachers thought they didn't have to teach grammar anymore, it was fine just to teach idiom after idiom. Lewis followed up a few years later with a book on how to apply the lexical approach, saying that it is idioms, expressions and grammar are not so far removed from grammar. In other words,... read more
An ESL text you really "can't live without"
By Jeremy P. Thompson "PhD in Biblical Languages" - December 1, 2006
Research in second language vocabulary acquisition demonstrates that learning idioms is one of the most important aspects of acquiring a second language. ESL students who do not understand idioms will not be able to understand a large portion of the English language. Consider that an ESL student can understand the grammar of the phrase "kick the bucket" without having any clue as to its actual meaning. Furthermore, ESL students who do not understand idioms will have a much harder time fitting into the culture of native English speakers. This struggle can be severely detrimental to a learner's intrinsic motivation, which is one of the most important factors influencing language learning success. A Year in the Life of an ESL Student: Idioms and Vocabulary You Can't Live Without is an outstanding resource that addresses this important issue of idioms by teaching ESL students an expansive number of them in an engaging and enjoyable manner.