Last weekend I went to Osaka JALT’s Tech Day at Hannan University and one of the coolest things that one of the presenters showed me was the Simple English Wikipedia. To quote the entry about it, “Simple English Wikipedia is a Wikipedia encyclopedia, written in basic English. Articles in the Simple English Wikipedia use fewer words and easier grammar than the English Wikipedia.”
The Simple English Wikipedia has been around since 2003 (why am I always the last to find out about these things) and has over 70,000 articles most of them are adaptations from articles on the main Wikipedia site. I’ve done a few searches and so far everything I’ve looked for is there.
This is great! So many of my students have told me that they have a hard time with the language in Wikipedia; it is too difficult for them. So, they often use a machine translator to make sense of it. I’m hoping that with SEW (can I call it that?) the students will have an easier time and will be less like to have it translated.