The Fastest Way to Learn English on the Planet.

No Kidding!

Learning English can be easy.  You can learn English fast.  It doesn’t have to be so hard!

Lauren Cleaver began teaching English on the Osa Peninsula of Costa Rica when she moved there in 1999 – after spending years as a death penalty attorney in Colorado. She quickly developed the 333 Word Basic English Language System. Logically, she found it fascinating, and the enthusiasm and success rate was exciting and unparalleled. As she thought more about it, she realized that the system was unique, a game changer. Comparing her system with various ESL methods, Rosetta Stone, DuoLingo – she found the simplicity and logic of her system irresistibly attractive.  It made sense. People actually learned English!

Great attorneys develop a Theory of the Case. Great attorneys focus on a few main points – and that is what 333 WORDS is all about. What is the essence of the English language? What are the most important words? How do they fit together? 

As she considered her methodology, she discovered Charles Kay Ogden, a Brit who in the 1930s created Basic English (also known as Simple English) which is termed a controlled language (subsets of natural languages to help simplify the language) as an international auxiliary language, and as an aid for teaching English as a Second Language.Basic English, an 850 word system, was used extensively following WW2 with the ultimate goal of world peace. It has influenced the Voice of America’s Special English for news broadcasting, as well as Simplified English which is an English-based controlled language designed to write technical manuals. The Basic English method used very few verbs, believing that conjugation was far too difficult to handle. Basic English doesn’t work well anymore for two reasons according to Lauren Cleaver.  First, avoiding the use of verbs never made sense, and 333 Words methodology of using two magic words completely solves this problem. Second, Basic English has become out-dated – many of the original 850 words are still listed as necessary – even though they are words that no one uses anymore – like carriage and cart.

So – 333 Words Basic Language System – had some historical depth.

Lauren Cleaver later discovered that one of the world’s smartest human beings based upon IQ, Ms. Marilyn vos Savant (IQ 190), believes that with a vocabulary of 500 words most humans can communicate their wishes and needs. Ms. Savant posits that basic conversation requires about 1000 words plus some knowledge of verb tenses. With the 333 Word System, the would-be English speaker is well on their way to communicating their wishes and needs. 333 Words provides an ideal platform to launch English learning – and additional vocabulary is easily added. The structure doesn’t change. Learners who understand the 333 Words method can easily add more and more. In fact 333 Words Basic English Language System is expanding for more advanced learners to 444, 555, etc.

333 Words also works extremely well in particular industries – for example, the hotel and tourism industry.  333 Words can be tailored so that a particular group of people within a particular industry learn words relevant to their industry.  333 Words is easily adapted to 333 Words for Hotels, 333 Words for Restaurants, 333 Words for the Medical Industry, 333 Words for Business, etc.  See the various 333 Courses here.

333 WORDS was sold to Urban Planet (see below). Eventually Urban Planet merged with Sibling Group – which then decided to no longer teach English but focused on helping international students earn US high school diplomas. Lauren Cleaver has now reacquired 333 WORDS.


Urban Planet acquires new English Language Learning System



Acquisition of 333 Words
Enables Urban Planet To Launch Urban English Express™

Durham, NC – Urban Planet – the world’s leading mobile education provider – has gone deep into the jungles of Costa Rica (literally) to acquire the 333 Words English Language Learning System, the most efficient way to learn English on the planet.  Urban Planet is incorporating the newly acquired system into its award winning mobile education lines to create a new product, Urban English Express (UEx). Urban English Express, promises to be the fastest, most effective way to teach beginner level English to students of all ages on any mobile device around the world.

The 333 Words English Language System that Urban Planet acquired is unique in identifying the main problems most new English language learners experience; confusion with the rules of grammar and lack of confidence, and bypassing them in a pedagogically sound manner. The system utilizes a logical learning methodology with a set of 333 carefully selected, common and necessary words that are also essential for survival. These 333 words are introduced to the student in a carefully orchestrated learning sequence designed to maximize logical learning, and thus, retention.

“The 333 Words English Language System is specifically designed to allow the student to build confidence and, at the same time, be able to use important and necessary words correctly,” said Lauren Cleaver, Creator of the 333 Words English Language System. “Building confidence ultimately frees the student to  experiment with more difficult concepts; therefore, the student becomes more proficient in the language in a relatively short amount of time.”

“This is a game changing acquisition because it not only shows that we will go to the ends of the earth to find strategies that work but it also demonstrates that mobile technologies can work with any system,” said Brian OliverSmith, CEO of Urban Planet.  “I am confident that Urban English Express will become the gold standard by which all other mobile and non-mobile English language learning programs are measured.”

Potential success of Urban English Express can be seen by how non-English speakers in Costa Rica responded to the 333 Words English Language System. The majority of non-English speakers were frustrated by the vast detail and somewhat trivial rules taught by other well-known programs. They flocked to the 333 Words English Language System because it simplified the process for learning English efficiently and effectively. The system is successful because, unlike other English Language learning programs, it operates under the assumption English is a step-by-step process that requires the student to experience a level of confidence in the language before he or she can advance to more complicated concepts.

“Urban English Express harnesses the power of technology to deliver a never before possible system that teaches students how to communicate using a unique integrated skills approach to reading, writing, speaking, and listening in English,” said  John Eyles, Global Leading English Language Expert. “The program is convenient so students are able to work at their own pace and as their schedules permit.”

Urban Planet is a leading innovator of educational products created for mobile, tablet, and computer.  The company is a 2013 CODiE Award Finalist, a Frost & Sullivan Most Innovative App designee, the GSMA Global Mobile Award for Best Mobile Learning Innovation winner and a Gartner Cool Vendor in Education Technology. Urban Planet’s products are available worldwide, with distribution channels in 75 countries. With its innovative and pioneering audio-sms delivery, the company’s mobile learning products can be accessed on over 95% of all mobile phones. Urban Planet also offers Writing Planet™, the world’s only comprehensive, web-based English writing program built on automated assessment technology and created specifically for non-native English speakers. Additional information about the company and products can be obtained at and or by calling (919) 237-2755.

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333 WORDS is presently offered in Spanish, Brazilian Portuguese, Mandarin, Japanese, Korean, Burmese, Indonesian, Hindi, Arabic, and French. 

Changing the way the world communicates -
333 WORDS at a time.