About English with Stories

My name is Sarah, and I help English learners find the courage to speak English.

I started Learning English with Stories programs in the spring of 2020 because there are many adults in my city who know some English, and they want to practice speaking English. I use stories because this is a fun way to connect online with people from different cultures and countries.

We all have our own stories, and reading gives us the words and confidence to tell them.

English with Stories book clubs also help you:

  • feel more comfortable and confident speaking English with native speakers
  • not worry about your accent or pronunciation
  • improve your vocabulary and reading ability in English

“Before, I just kept quiet, but now I speak.”

Before our book club, I lacked confidence to speak with other people. Sometimes I talked English with my son and daughter, but I didn’t know what to say. But now I have confidence. I don’t care about my pronunciation. Now, when I go shopping, I can speak English with other people… Before I just kept quiet, but now I speak.          Saniah (December 2020)

My own story with reading and speaking French

In 1999 my husband and my daughter and I visited France. I was excited because I studied French, and visited France when I was younger. I loved it. However, when I got to France with my family, I couldn’t remember enough French to speak the way I used to. I felt embarrassed and shy. 

In 2004, at a conference for English language professionals, I learned more about the powerful relationship between reading for fun and becoming better at speaking a language. Dr. Krashen spoke about his research and his own experience with reading easy books and magazines in the languages that he wanted to speak. I also read his book, The Power of Reading, 2nd edition, 2004, and I decided to read in French before another family trip to France.

For 6 months, I read Tintin, a comic series in French. I read at least 15 minutes almost every day. I didn’t understand all the words, but it was fun to read. 

When we got to France, I could speak and read French better! I was comfortable speaking the French I knew, and I had a great time. Reading worked!  

This is a photo of me speaking French and getting cheese for our picnic lunch.

I am a professional educator with over 25 years of experience teaching English to speakers of other languages at community education ESL programs for adults, colleges, universities, intensive language programs, and vocational schools. I enjoy working with beginning to low-intermediate speakers the most.

In all of my years helping adult immigrants and university students get ready for their next step in life, reading interesting books and short stories at the right level has been the key to their success in school and in their jobs.


  • Master’s degree in Teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages
  • Master’s degree in Adult Education
  • Bachelor’s degree in Nutrition with an emphasis in Economics

FAST FACTS about English with Stories book clubs:

  • It’s OK to have an accent and make mistakes
  • Our online groups are a safe place to practice English
  • The reading is a good level for you

If you are afraid, or feel shy about speaking English and you want to find your courage, please join us!