We know you are all getting ready to start up the school in about one month. You are probably sharpening your pencils, cleaning out your book bags and reviewing your notes from past classes.
There is one very important tool every student should have when starting ESL classes; every good language student needs a good dictionary.
There are a lot to choose from and students may be overwhelmed by so many options.
We have some tips and suggestions to help you find the right dictionary:
–Bilingual dictionaries are great. English learner dictionaries are better! You are all English learner’s, unless you are you a complete beginner you should have a good English learner dictionary.
–Pronunciation is important! Does the dictionary help you pronounce words in a way you can understand and make sense of. Some may look like this; /pruh-nuhn-see-ey-shuhn/ (spelled pronunciation) or like this; /prəˌnʌnsiˈeɪʃən/ (International Phonetic Alphabet). IPA may be used by more people, but Spelled Pronunciation may be easier to understand, which do you feel more comfortable with?
–Illustrations all over? Would you rather have a dictionary that had some pictures in it that helped you to understand difficult words, or is it more important that your dictionary fits as many words as possible in the book?
–Just words? Do you want your dictionary to only contain vocabulary words, or do you want it to have things like some famous names (Presidents, Celebrities, Artists), Phrasal Verbs (show up, fall apart, rough up) and maybe some maps and weight and measurement conversion charts?
These are just a few things to think about when getting the right dictionary.
Click below to read about some of the most popular learner dictionaries. There are also links to help you shop for cheap (from http://esl.about.com/od/engilshvocabulary/tp/tp_dict.htm).
And don’t forget to comment and let us know what dictionary you like to use and any computer or phone apps that help you learn and practice English