Professional English Training
Hello, my name is Daniel Bensen. I am an English teacher from America, with ACCET-accredited TEFL certification and over three years of experience teaching students of all levels, ages, and language backgrounds.
I was born in Chicago, USA, and I have lived in Maine, California, Montana, Boston, Massachusetts, and Japan. I moved to Bulgaria in September 2008, and I have been living and teaching English in Sofia since then.
I enjoy meeting new people and learning new things, which I think is what language training is all about. Expect to learn a lot and talk a lot in my classes!
One on One Tutorials
My One to One English Tutorials are for people who want intensive instruction in a specific subject or skill. I will work with you to improve your English or prepare you for an English exam or life in America.
Tutorials can take place in Mezhduchasie (Gurko st.45, ap.4) or in another location of your choice. Times are also flexible.
- All Tutorials (one student): 20 leva per class hour
Conversation and grammar
This class is for people who want to travel, make English-speaking friends, understand English-language books and movies, or generally improve their English. We will use textbooks, internet resources, and conversations to improve your English conversation, grammar, and vocabulary.
This class is for people who want to learn English for business travel, dealing with English-speaking clients, co-workers, or superiors, applying for jobs in English-speaking countries, and reading and writing English documents. We will focus on text books, with conversations, and some material from the internet to improve your confidence and accuracy. We can also proofread and correct your official documents.
I have experience teaching students to excel on the SAT, TOEFL, GRE, FCE, and CAE tests, and I can also prepare you for another test at your request. We will use text books and practice exercises to teach you grammar, reading and speaking strategies, and how to write an English essay.
Consultation for application to American colleges and universities
Are you preparing for college or university study in America? We will find the best schools for you, prepare and proofread your application materials, prepare for the SAT and TOEFL tests, and talk about life as a student in America.
I also offer very reasonable rates on proof-reading English documents or consulting translation from Bulgarian to English. Consulting sessions can be conducted in person or over email. Contact me for details.
Videos and listening:
- To download streaming video (from Youtube for example) to your computer: http://www.flashload.net
- To convert a video file (.avi) into a sound file (.mp3): http://dvdvideosoft.com/ (this webpage has many conversion programs. Choose the one you want. There are also step-by-step instructions)
- To break a long movie into several smaller chapters: http://mpesch3.de1.cc/mp3dc.html
- To slow down speech and do other advanced manipulation: http://audacity.sourceforge.net/
- www.Youtube.com (watch videos online or download them)
- http://www.openculture.com/ (videos, podcasts, books, and English lessons, all free)
- http://librivox.org/ (listen to books read out loud. The quality can be very good or very bad, but it’s free)
- http://www.podanza.com/dir/arts/literature/ (literature podcasts)
- http://www.audiobooksforfree.com/screen_main.asp (more audiobooks)
- http://www.learnoutloud.com/Home (educational podcasts)
- http://www.npr.org (click on archives for lectures and news)
- http://www.c-span.org (click on booknotes for lectures and news)
- http://www.ted.com/ (great ideas and lectures. Click the subtitles button to see subtitles in English.
- http://accent.gmu.edu/browse.php (People with different accents (native and non-native) from all over the world say the same sentence so you can hear how their accents differ from each other.)
- http://www.forvo.com/ (Type in a word and hear a native speaker pronounce it. )
- http://www.uiowa.edu/~acadtech/phonetics/ (This page shows animations of the way the throat and mouth move when pronouncing different sounds in English)
- http://www.newsweek.com/(an American news magazine, very good language)
- http://www.short-stories.co.uk/ (an online directory of short stories. Try to read one a day!)
- http://www.americanliterature.com/ (great American short stories, including some famous ones)
- http://www.gutenberg.org/wiki/Main_Page (An enormous database of public domain books. You can find all classic literature here)
- http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page (try translating English Wikipedia pages into Bulgarian. Do one a day and you will improve your English and improve the Bulgarian Wikipedia)
- http://www.livemocha.com/ (find people to teach you English over the internet)
- http://www.mangolanguages.com/(find people to teach you English over the internet)
- http://www.mylanguageexchange.com/Learn-Languages.asp(find people to teach you English over the internet)
- http://www.lingq.com/ (find people to teach you English over the internet)
- http://www.uiowa.edu/~acadtech/phonetics/# (and if you’re worried about pronunciation, here’s how you do it.)
- TOEFL Take a free unofficial version of the test. Requires Java.
- TOEFL Official site of the Test of English as a Foreign Language. Includes tutorials, practice questions, downloads, and information on both the computer-based and paper-based versions of the test. Also markets test preparation materials.
- TOEFL TV – on YouTube
- TOEFL: Beat the TOEFL Test Provides exercises to help students prepare for the test.
- TOEFL: TestDen Fee-based practice exercises to help with the computer-based test.
- TOEFL-Prep Writing Practice Offers help in learning to write formal essays, covering paragraph structure and coherence.
- TOEFL Practice Test
- A free 20 minute test on grammar
- TOEFL tips for students
http://www.stumbleupon.com/ (Download this program, tell it what things interest you (animals, politics, science, etc.), then press the STUMBLE button and you will go to an interesting webpage. This is how I find most of the reading material for our classes)
http://www.breakingnewsenglish.com/ (English teachers love this page. A man in England writes simple English summaries of news stories, then reads them out loud. You can listen to the MP3 file, then read the text, then do the exercises he made.)
Meeting friends in Sofia!
- http://sites.google.com/site/mejduchasie/bensen/conversat (My conversation swap. It’s a great way to meet people and have fun conversations in Bulgarian and English)
- http://www.couchsurfing.org/ (meet foreigners visiting Sofia and learn about fun events! You can even host foreign guests in your house. And of course when you go on vacation, you can find someone to host you.)
- http://www.bulgalien.com/(a webpage for foreigners living in Bulgaria. Find out about events and meet people. This site is for younger people.)
- http://www.expatinbulgaria.com/ (a webpage for foreigners living in Bulgaria. Find out about events and meet people. This site is for older people.)
- Before 10am, after 6pm: 60 leva per class (90 minutes)
- Between 10am and 6pm: 50 leva per class (90 minutes)
- For lessons outside of my office, add 10 leva
- For skype lessons, subtract 10 leva
- 2-3 students : 25 leva per student per class (30 after 6pm)
- 4 students or more: 20 leva per class (25 after 6pm)
- Within 24 hours: 0.05 leva per word
- Within 48 hours: 0.03 leva per word
- 0.01 leva per word for documents over 2,000 words
- For the next class: free!