Having taught ESL for many years, I am often asked by students about how they can understand authentic, undigested language, and speak more naturally beyond the walls of the classroom. In other words, they usually can understand my “teacher-talk,” but when they go to buy a cheeseburger at a fast food restaurant, they can’t figure out what the cashier is saying (perhaps a rare dialect of the English language, something only found on the walls of prehistoric caves).
In fact, this might be extremely frustrating for you too if you have studied English for years in your country, only to discover that what people use in “real” conversation is sometimes far different from what you studied in preparation for college entrance exams or class tests. And even if you studied a variety of expressions in your classes, the language is often NOT what is spoken in the streets, meeting rooms, and classrooms in the target country. Non-native speakers often do not have the background knowledge of everyday language to understand it, relying on textbooks published by others to be their guides. Moreover, studying English for the TOEFL, TOEIC, or such tests will help you with academic English, but it probably won’t help you communicate with your classmates as much as you think. As a result, learners often sound very “textbook” like when they speak.
So, what can learners do to learn everyday “street talk”? I recognize that students need to learn idiomatic expressions and slang to both understand and communicate with native English speakers, and this site is specifically designed to help low-intermediate to advanced learners improve their survival skills in many different situations. EZSlang will try to make learning slang an easier process for better communication.
Read more about the Pedagogical and Technical design of the site HERE.
Randall Davis has taught ESL/EFL in Japan and the United States, and he has presented on educational technology throughout the US and in Canada, China, Japan, Korea, Mexico, Hawaii, Peru, and Saudi Arabia. He is also the creator of the sites, Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab (www.esl-lab.com), Daily ESL (www.trainyouraccent.com), Train Your Accent (www.dailyesl.com)and Study Abroad: Tips For Students (www.tips4students.com).
Josh Davis designed the logo and background for the site.