Revolutionizing English Language Learning

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ELTS provides cutting-edge professional development for K-12 teachers across the U.S. and around the world.

The Color Vowel Approach Products

The Color Vowel Approach Products

ELTS offers high-quality educational products that support English language teaching for learner success in vocabulary development, oral proficiency, reading, and spelling.

Workshops, Conferences, Webinars & Retreats

ELTS trainers present regularly at regional and national language teaching workshops, retreats, conferences and more. Check out our list of upcoming events.

CONFERENCES, WORKSHOPS & WEBINARS

Our Upcoming Events

Discover how taking Color Vowel Approach improves teaching for English Learner literacy, pronunciation, spelling, and vocabulary development.

  • Learn the history of English as an alphabetic language that is not phonetically written and understand the resulting challenges we face as educators.
  • Understand how the human brain is wired to suppress noticing the way we listen and speak.
  • Discover the untapped ‘secret’ of spoken English: word and phrase stress.
  • Learn how to use the Color Vowel Chart as a visual organizer for words and phrases.
  • Mirror and practice essential Color Vowel instructional techniques: anchoring, kinesthetic signaling, categorization, and acoustic flooding.
  • Experience powerful classroom games and activities that boost learner engagement while building phonemic awareness.

Discover how taking Color Vowel Approach improves teaching for English Learner literacy, pronunciation, spelling, and vocabulary development.

  • Learn the history of English as an alphabetic language that is not phonetically written and understand the resulting challenges we face as educators.
  • Understand how the human brain is wired to suppress noticing the way we listen and speak.
  • Discover the untapped ‘secret’ of spoken English: word and phrase stress.
  • Learn how to use the Color Vowel Chart as a visual organizer for words and phrases.
  • Mirror and practice essential Color Vowel instructional techniques: anchoring, kinesthetic signaling, categorization, and acoustic flooding.
  • Experience powerful classroom games and activities that boost learner engagement while building phonemic awareness.

This two-session event takes place online using Zoom video conferencing software. This webinar is limited to 12 participants.

Discover how taking Color Vowel Approach improves teaching for English Learner literacy, pronunciation, spelling, and vocabulary development.

  • Learn the history of English as an alphabetic language that is not phonetically written and understand the resulting challenges we face as educators.
  • Understand how the human brain is wired to suppress noticing the way we listen and speak.
  • Discover the untapped ‘secret’ of spoken English: word and phrase stress.
  • Learn how to use the Color Vowel Chart as a visual organizer for words and phrases.
  • Mirror and practice essential Color Vowel instructional techniques: anchoring, kinesthetic signaling, categorization, and acoustic flooding.
  • Experience powerful classroom games and activities that boost learner engagement while building phonemic awareness.

What Our Clients Say About Us

See More Testimonials
“We saw that teachers love using the Color Vowel Chart, so Intercambio now includes it in all curriculum we produce. For many English learners here, the CVC has led to life-changing breakthroughs around pronunciation! ”
Lee Shainis, Founder • Intercambio Uniting Communities • Boulder (CO)
“The Color Vowel System is such a fundamentally innovative and effective methodology that we built our company, Blue Canoe Learning, on it. We digitize it, scale it with speech recognition and machine learning, and create games and activities using it. Now anyone with a smart phone can play the Blue Canoe app and leverage the Color Vowel System to improve their English pronunciation and ability to communicate effectively. We are making such a wonderful impact on people’s lives, and ELTS and Color Vowel are an integral part of why we are successful!”
Sarah Daniels, CEO of Blue Canoe
“I find the way the elements of your training sessions weave themselves together genuinely elegant. It isn't just a "bag of tricks to deal with different problems" … there’s a sense of integrality and completeness in what you have developed overall.”
Brock Brady, U.S. Peace Corps Specialist (Washington DC)
“I can't thank you enough for an amazing experience [at Color Vowel Basics] this weekend. The Color Vowel Approach provides the strategy and structure I was looking for on behalf of my students. I can't wait to begin sharing it with them [next week]. The work you have done is truly remarkable. It's true that simplicity lies at the far side of complexity.
Amy Reavey, Literacy Volunteer (NJ)
“I love using the Color Vowel Chart because it works! Student feedback on the system is so positive. I have students who tell me how helpful it has been not only for pronunciation, but also for spelling, specifically for students for whom the Roman alphabet is new. English spelling and pronunciation is challenging, and I am so thankful to have this resource!”
Vanessa S. ESL Teacher, WA
“I feel like I took a quantum leap in my quest to learn the English language after I attended your class today!”
Ricardo Castaño, ESL Volunteer Tutor, Maryland
“One of the best workshops I have attended. [Shirley and Karen] achieved an excellent balance between structure and achieving workshop objectives, staying flexible and incorporating participant contributions and concerns. They modeled good teaching/facilitating and helped participants feel comfortable immediately.”
TESOL PCI Participant, New Orleans (2011)
“I don’t think I’ve ever been with a more skillful presenter [in Karen Taylor]. It was like watching a high-wire artist, but with NO misgivings: you know she’s totally secure up there. We were in the palm of her hand!”
Laurel Pollard, Author of "Zero Prep" and "Wow!"
“Interesting, fun, and I met people I look forward to keeping in touch with. So many 'Ah ha!' moments. Loved it.”
TESOL PCI Participant, Toronto (2015)
“Fabulous, fabulous, fabulous! I want you to come to [our school] and do Professional Development!”
TESOL PCI Participant, Toronto (2015)
“When I learned about it, I sensed that The Color Vowel Chart would be a great autonomous learning tool for students of English pronunciation, but I didn't realize that so many English teachers in Central America would agree with me. When I presented it at local TESOL Conferences, everyone pulled out their phones to take pictures of the chart and the activities we were doing in groups. There was even applause on one occasion when I told them that there are free activities they can download from the website.”
Rebecca Wilner, ESL Specialist, Washington DC
“The Color Vowel Chart allows my actor, broadcaster and executive clients to instantly see the color of the sound they are mispronouncing or mixing. The visual cuing speeds up the recognition time of the sounds! I think the Color Vowel Chart is the most brilliant thing I have ever seen. It has really changed the way we work at the Speech and Accent Academy!”
Lisa Jeffries, Executive Speech Coach (FL)
“I've used the Color Vowel Chart extensively, from tutoring individuals privately to teaching classes of International Teaching Assistants. This chart gets around the difficulty students have in hearing non-native vowel sounds (what good is it to distinguish, say, "bed" from "bead" when, to a student, both vowels sound the same?). The Color Vowel Chart lets students see the sounds instead. So even though students might not be able to hear the difference between "bed" and "bead", they can certainly recognize the difference between the colors RED and GREEN. Using this language of colors allows me to convey sounds to students without their having to hear them. Students learn to produce the sounds of the colors before their ears actually recognize the differences in vowel sounds. In this way, the Color Vowel Chart scaffolds the process of acquiring non-native phonological features.”
Charles Duquette, Maryland English Institute
“Who doesn’t love card games? My middle school students find Color it out! extremely engaging and I find it a powerful tool to introduce and review complicated sounds and spellings in English. In fact, I used Color it out! to introduce my students to the Color Vowel Chart before ever "teaching" them about it. I found it a very natural point of entry for the Chart. Since then, we have been exploring additional ways to use the Color it out! cards, such as Dominoes and Go Fish. A fantastic, fun, and very powerful resource!”
Michael Connors, E.L. Haynes Middle School, Washington DC
“Shirley is one of the most excellent teacher/speakers around. Always fun and entertaining, but mostly wonderfully comprehensive.”
Jody Gabler, ESL Teacher
“One of my favorite things about the [Color Vowel] Chart is the way that it visually brings attention to the differences among the English vowels--differences that students may not be able to hear. I also like how the Chart has allowed me to incorporate pronunciation into other aspects of my classes. While students are working together on any task, if I hear a major pronunciation problem I can say, "change your vowel from 'blue' to 'mustard' for that word," and the student is usually able to improve her pronunciation.”
Jody Gabler, ESL Teacher (NY)
“This training was phenomenal. I learned an innovative but easy way to teach students about the many different sounds that vowels can make. The Color Vowel Chart is easy to learn and uses the different modalities of learning to reach every type of learner.”
K-12 ESL Teacher, Pueblo City Schools (CO)
“Wonderful session. Stellar presenters. Great activities. Best session I've been to. They were on fi-yur!”
TESOL PCI Participant, Toronto (2015)
From the Blog
July 21, 2018
Summer Resolutions and My Color Vowel Life

Not long ago, I bought my planner for the 2018-19 school year…

February 15, 2018
A Colorful Approach to Spelling

Mention spelling to just about anyone, and they will likely bemoan the…

February 13, 2018
What Color Do You Hear?

The idea of ‘hearing’ a color — or coloring a sound, for…

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