Category Archives: Language Arts

App – WordLens

wordlensOntario List member, Jason Yeoman, suggested I have a look at WordLens, an iOS/Android app translates text between different languages in live-time. Jason explains, “The app opens the devices camera and will translate english to spanish or german to english. The best part is that you don’t require an internet connection.” I had a look at this app last year and was turned off by the in-app purchases required to add language capability to it but when I reviewed it this week, it appears that for an undisclosed time, the language packs are being offered at no cost. That changes my initial rejection to a conditional (and possibly time-sensitive) recommend. I installed all the language apps and tried it out – its accuracy seems to fluctuate but it’s close enough that I could interpret Google images of road signs easily.

The URL:

Merriam-Webster Visual Dictionary

visdictionaryMy friend, Ann Blakely, told me about this site last week. The Merriam-Webster Visual Dictionary is a collection of visual illustrations. The site explains itself: “The Visual Dictionary Online is an interactive dictionary with an innovative approach. From the image to the word and its definition, the Visual Dictionary Online is an all-in-one reference. Search the themes to quickly locate words, or find the meaning of a word by viewing the image it represents. What’s more, theVisual Dictionary Online helps you learn English in a visual and accessible way. The Visual Dictionary Online is ideal for teachers, parents, translators and students of all skill levels.”

The URL:

Wellcome Image Database

wellcomeThis vast collection contains historical images from the Wellcome Library collections, Tibetan Buddhist paintings, ancient Sanskrit manuscripts written on palm leaves, beautifully illuminated Persian books and much more. Much of the collection is available in high or low resolution for educational use either by permission or by Creative Commons licensing. “Whether it’s medicine or magic, the sacred or the profane, science or satire – you’ll find more than you expect.” This is probably more useful for the secondary level students. Preview for use by younger students, just to be safe.

The URL: