My name is Samantha Osteen. I’m 39 years old and have been married for almost 17 years. I have two teenage boys, one who dropped out of school and one who will be a senior next school year. I dropped out of school when I was 16 yrs old and have been struggling since then, until 4 years ago when I started working with my husband as a land surveyor. I had left the company for 2 months to try something different, but that didn’t work out, so I went back to work with my husband. Though the money is okay and helps out a lot, I’m just not happy there. To my husband, it’s a career that he has done since he was a kid with his father and he loves everything about it, but to me, it’s just a job. So one afternoon my husband and I were on our way home and were talking about how he knows I’m not happy and I should do something about it, so I did. For 3 months now I have been working really hard to get my GED, not only for myself but also for my son - to show him that an education is important in life to accomplish dreams and goals that you want for yourself now. Not only am I proud of myself, but my son is also, and now wants to do get his GED. On top of all that I pursuing my associate's degree in Health Information Management at Collin College.
I would like to thank my GED teacher, Heather Summers, and my whole family for the love and support I received during all of this. I couldn’t have done without any of you... oh and the support of my classmates too.
Olga Miranda Segura has been my student since I started teaching in the adult ESL program in November of 2019. Due to language barriers, I have only begun to scratch the surface on what a wonderful person this woman is, which is exactly the reason she is worthy of our admiration. Olga has shown that core values such as dedication, compassion, perseverance, and commitment know no certain language. Not only has she come to my classes like clockwork, but she always arrives early to ensure that she is prepared for the upcoming lesson.
Recently, when our class doubled in size, Olga continued to arrive early and helped organize the classroom environment in preparation for the arriving students. Olga displays an abundant amount of dedication, willingness to learn, and a classroom cooperation attitude that allows the entire class to thrive. In many ways she has become the rock and foundation of our classroom. She is always the first to arrive and the first whose face I seek to find when preparing for class.
Despite our language barrier, she has become someone whom I truly admire and cannot wait to get to know more. Never let a language barrier hinder your thoughts on the kindness of other human beings. Olga is a prime example of this factual statement and I’ve no doubt that she will continue to change lives, just as she has mine.
ESL RESOURCES FOR STUDENTS
We've put together this ESL resource guide to help students, from teens to adults, get the help they need to achieve their goals with learning English:
43 Fantastic Resources for ESL Students
Lessons that you can both see and hear can make all the difference in your conversational English. Check out these YouTube channels to get the experience of talking to someone face-to-face and don’t be afraid to talk back!
VOA Learning English: With this Voice of America channel, you can hear news and feature stories in American English, but spoken 33% slower than normal to make it easier to follow along. You’ll get a grasp on a wide range of vocabulary subjects.
Listen and Read Along: This is exactly what it sounds like. Listen to stories and read along with them by following the highlighted word. Hear pronunciation and intonation while getting a better grasp on sentence structure.
TOEFL TV: Get English-learning tips and learn about questions that appear on the TOEFL test.
OMGmeiyu’s channel: This site is great for Chinese speakers. YouTube user OMGmeiyu uses her animated style and knowledge of Chinese to help native Chinese speakers learn English in a fun and relatable way.
English with Jennifer: The host of this channel is a great ESL teacher for those who needs more guidance than just reading off of websites. She’s separated her videos into playlists covering vocabulary, verb tenses, pronunciation, and more.
English Teacher Melanie: If you need some help with your pronunciation, particularly with an American accent, English Teacher Melanie goes into detail in her videos, covering each sound and explaining differences between American pronunciation and that of other areas.
EF podEnglish: These English lessons are broken up into five-minute chunks and by skill level, so you can get a quick lesson whenever you can fit it in.
Teacher Phil: Study basic English, business English, idioms, and more with Teacher Phil. You’ll learn how to speak with an American accent and use proper English, even taking on some of the more confusing language rules.
BBC Learning English’s Channel: We mentioned BBC’s great site for learning English, but their YouTube channel has just as much to offer. Watch “The Flatmates,” a soap opera made for learning English, or learn about different idioms.
RESOURCES FOR GED STUDENTS
This is a site made available through National Public Broadcasting. Much of it is free. It provides unofficial GED practice tests that are designed to help you plan how to use the GED Connection learning activities, either regularly broadcast on OPB or on this site. The interactive activities included on this site are titled Online Learning Modules, structured courses and internet activities, developed to improve your skills and knowledge of the GED tests.
4tests.com titles itself the "leading free, online, practice testing portal on the internet." One must first establish an account in order to take the practice tests. This account enables the student to view the progress one has made and to continue an exam that was not finished. This also allows the site to advertise and make offers that one might refuse.
The links on this page have been gathered to allow the instructor and student to access valid GED resources immediately for use in the classroom. All links provide either download for classroom use or student interactivity with an activity that relates to GED skills.
This site is a free, easy to use math website with hundreds of pages of interactive practice and lessons covering whole number skills, mental math for increasing speed and fluency, fractions, decimals, percents, ratios, algebra, geometry, and additional topics.
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