The worldwide spread of the COVID-19 coronavirus has rapidly accelerated the use of online learning around the world. Edusoft’s English Discoveries program is designed to provide students with the tools they need in order to succeed in a distance online learning environment. English Discoveries recognizes the importance of providing learners with scaffolding to move toward successful online learning that reflects self-directed philosophies. English Discoveries provides student tools such as keyword glosses, highlighting of main ideas, and reference words. Audio support for reading passages, scripts for audio and video resources, and line-by-line translation, further support learning.
The learning materials also contain explicit language focus and metacognitive strategies for comprehension (e.g., advice on identifying the main idea, skimming, and scanning, understanding vocabulary in context, etc.). English Discoveries’ comprehension activities are designed to support learners’ understanding of the resource texts. Activity types such as “select text”, “insert text”, “highlight text”, and “edit text”, focus students’ attention on discourse organization and encourage close reading. Other activities help develop higher-order thinking skills such as sequencing, matching, categorizing, summarizing, and synthesizing. In summary, English Discoveries students who are working in self-access should be encouraged to make full use of the different student support tools as a first step to becoming a successful self-regulated learner.