English As a Second Language Podcasts


One of the things you learn to do in New York is not to look directly at people around you, especially if you share a rush hour train or overcrowded bus with them. However, if you did happen to look up and around you, you’d see that all of you, stuck on the 6 uptown together, have something in common: you are immersed into whatever’s playing on your iPod/iPad/phone/MP3 player (those are still around, right?). Those lucky few who managed to score a seat might be engaged into more rewarding activities like reading something, but we’ll come back to them later on. Yes, you might be stuck on the train uptown, but the beauty – or the curse, opinions vary – of technology is that you always have your work with you. You can listen to the latest Drake’s song later on, so why not spend this time more productively? Enter ESL podcasts.

Go to iTunes and subscribe to the English as a Second Language podcast in the Language Courses category. The podcast collection has over 700 records and is the product of the LA-based Center of Educational Development. The themes covered include pretty much everything you might need, from more mundane topics like Going to Emergency Room (lesson #694) and Shopping for a Television (lesson #687) to more philosophical like Looking Back on One’s life (lesson #707) and Sharing with Other (lesson #641). Each podcast episode features a dialogue on a certain topic read by native speakers of English in such a way that it is very easy to understand and see how English words and expressions are used in the context of conversation. You can also download learning guides for each episode from iTunes.

Better @ English has a good collection of short and fun podcasts on various topics. Each podcast comes with a full transcript and you can choose from intermediate, upper intermediate and advanced levels.

Go to China232.com at iTunes to access their 60 podcasts and get immersed into conversations about frustrating work situations -- after all, we all encounter those, sooner or later – and discussions of a hit TV show “The Simpsons,” among others. Don’t miss the notes that accompany each episode and learn the key vocabulary and English phrases that were used in the dialogue.

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