Preparing the materials is the work of ten minutes once you get used to doing it. Simply go through the text and see if you can pick out enough language or points of conversational interest. If not, it wasn’t going to make an interesting lesson in the first place.
Although this song is dated and might sound sexist to some ears, there are plenty of countries where it wouldn’t sound as problematic so that’s not reason enough to shy away from using something controversial. Besides which it is a good conversation starter about sexism if the class is thus inclined. And, it’s Elvis so who can complain? Continue reading
Third and mixed conditionals are a pain in the neck for most students. Too many damn words in the sentence. But it’s a bit easier to deal with when it’s an “I wish” statement which is a sort of third conditional. You could extend this guessing game activity as a written/drill summary exercise for the torture of the full structure, but your students will stop using it the minute you stop listening so it’s up to you. Continue reading
I’ve often looked, fruitlessly, for alternative fluency lessons than the regular conversation style class. Problem solving activities generate a genuine need to communicate and can rope in students who otherwise stay quiet.
This activity uses the topic of difficult relationships between people and family members, but without demanding anyone gives any personal information about theirs. For B1 or higher. Continue reading
Phrasal verbs, universally hated, but here are a few that can be taught using TPR as a start to give learners some kind of hook for retention. One for the kineasthetic learners.** For strong B1/B2 and above.
This song might not be the latest One Direction but I’ve never known it not evoke some mush in students of any age and then prompt some nice creative writing and student generated language. It works with Pre Int and higher and practises speaking, listening and creative writing without much emphasis on vocab and grammar. Deliberately. Songs are about message and story. Continue reading
Students always have problems asking short questions with auxiliary verbs.
These questions that show interest, surprise or just keep a conversation going are vital when you can’t think of anything to say (or need time to think how to say it). Students could just make do with “Really?” but, after a couple of times, it sounds insincere and overly surprised. Continue reading
This lesson is to reinforce the vocabulary used when using Office software in English, with particular reference to Word and Excel. I assume most students will know how the programmes operate. Make sure of this before pairing students up! Continue reading
I’ve given a suggested sentence but there are many ways to express the scenarios and maybe you could turn that into some kind of competition or race or guessing game. Mine are very boring but I used all my energy doing Google searches. Your students can do better.