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September 10, 2013

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Vocabla: The Words On The Street

vocabla-logo.jpgVocabla is a simple but very powerful new online tool for English language learners to increase their vocabulary in a fun and social way. Read more from the folks at eltjam.

The folks over at Polish startup LangApp have come up with something rather special; a heady mix of vocabulary tutor, social network and shareable media library. It’s a potent brew.

Vocabla is a powerful demonstration of how addictive language learning can be whilst also being both effective and entirely free. Its premise is a simple one; learners use the platform to learn vocabulary through translation from/into their L1 and in doing so are able to build their own wordlists, take tests and compete with other learners using Vocabla. Currently, Vocabla supports Chinese, Spanish, Portuguese, Vietnamese, Arabic, Russian, Turkish and Polish translations and says it is continually evolving to include more.

The ‘chalk face’ of the platform is the vocab checker. The learner is presented with a word in English (along with an audio file for pronunciation) and they are given a simple choice: Do you feel that you know this word, or do you wan to add it to the list of words to practice? Once they have built up a sizeable list of words to practice they can begin a set of activities to help them familiarise themselves with and memorise the new items.

The activities available to the learner to help them with this task are simple but effective. There are simple flashcards showing the new vocab in L1 and revealing it in English on the reverse so that the learner can test themselves, a multiple choice activity using the L1 translations and a text entry task in which learner writes the English translation of the word themselves.

Read the full article from eltjam.

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