A new, unique series for intermediate and advanced level learners. Each book is 6,000-8,000 words long, and has accompanying audio. Some key features include:
- immersive audio, bringing learners into the stories, using a variety of voices (and accents), and Hollywood-produced sound effects
- recycling of vocabulary, allowing for learners to interact with new words in a number of ways
- general English test bank of 5 quizzes (10 questions each) in each book, testing comprehension, vocabulary, grammar, listening and dictation, with all questions either using parts of the book directly, or based on what has just been studied/learned
- all quizzes are scored, for self-assessment, and scores can be tracked back to the instructor, regardless of the LMS (can be ours, or another one, that allows for outside scores)
More information further down the page
Buying these titles
All titles (when available) may be purchased for use online and offline, either individually or as Class Sets (at a reduced price). Options include making the book available campus-wide (using the school's IP Range) allowing access on all devices when on campus, Class Sets controlled by a class-wide login (no need to register each individual student), to individual purchases, which allows the user to possess a book, rather than just online access for a certain period. There is also a complete LMS solution integrating the books such that scores are returned to teachers, administrators or even school boards.
Tough Jobs is a tip-of-the-hat and celebration of those who do the less desirable jobs that society demands. Based around the Dirty Jobs theme that prevails at the moment, and fueled by the likes of Mike Rowe, Tough Jobs offers an alternative to the mainstream Readers of a typical ELL classroom. These classic adventure stories, written almost 80 years ago, take students to every corner of the globe, introducing characters and themes which drive reluctant readers toward higher level vocabulary, introducing a large number of new terms, and helping learners to overcome an unease in dealing with difficult words. These skills directly relate to test-prep, particularly for tests such as TEOIC, TOEFL, and IELTs.
Specifically developed to support learners, we have included:
About the story - A synopsis on Pg 4 for the story ahead, introducing the theme and a few of the key terms, to orient learners toward the story.
The Story - 35-40 pages of approximately 200-word sections, to ensure each page is a consistent length. This dispenses the content in "workable chunks", and also allows for such teacher-driven exercises like timed-reading.
Images - Images are used to help supprt understanding, quickly and efficiently. To give a definition of "artificial respiration" would require at least a paragraph of text. To see an image of artificial respiration in action would allow a learner to quickly understand those 2 words, without losing their place in the story. These images are bolded in red, informing learners that an image exists on the page, for this particular term.
Vocab support - There was a consideration of adding definitions of each of the most difficult, problematic words, however, by introducing cute, pop-up definitions would force a separation from the story and would cause too much of a distraction. Adding easily scanned supportive text in the right margin, allowing the story to flow, was opted for instead. The most troublesome words, which are most necessary to understand the story, are bolded in the text, and can be found in the right margin.
Quizzes - 5 sets of quizzes (10 questions each), reenforcing and assessing the vocabulary contained in each book.
Tracking - The quizzes generate 50 data points per book, and 750 over the entire series. Each of these are categorized into comprehension, vocabulary, grammar, listening and dictation (extended listening). An instructor is given the chance to easily monitor these, providing the opportunity to attend to areas of identified weakness.
Every effort is made to allow the student to stay focused on the story itself, and to be supported in efforts to be a self-directed learner. Support, rather than hand-holding, can help to achieve this. Learners are instructed from the beginning that they are encouraged to look up new words, frequently, and apply those definitions to the story. Because many words have a wide variety of meanings, learners will need to become more aware of using the tools around them. This can only be a good thing.
Whether preparing students for vocational training, vocabulary based tests such as TOEIC, or giving reluctant (often male) readers something with more pizzazz, there is something for everyone in the Tough Jobs series.
We are teachers and educators based in Japan, the UK, Canada and the US. Our focus is on providing high quality content digitally. We preserve the strength of books (the layout, graphics and so on) while also adding in the elements that teachers want, and students need. Simultaneously, our solution enables the books to be used as full e-learning content and integrated to the wider LMS environment.
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