If you are planning to generate some vocabulary lists for your students, even those who are very young, take a Toefl book and randomly choose words that you know feature in the test. This way the students get used to words that will help them at a later date. Learning instructions, test question forms and academic words are all important aspects of language and can be taught instead of words that may not be particularly helpful for students.
All vocabulary is important, of course, but this is a suggestion that makes sense in the building of students' development.
Purchase two mannequin heads at a craft store (Michaels or Joanns) and use them for dialogs. Ask students to stand behind the heads and have a discussion on any topic you choose. This works in the same way as puppets or masks in that the student talks through another, making it easier for the speaker to feel that he/she is not the focus.
Heads can be decorated with hats or jewelry. They can be used and dressed up in costumes of other countries if different cultures are being discussed, or in historical garb if history is the focus.
Jokes, stories and drama situations are suited to this prop.
Do something different this week! Try an activity that you don't usually do. We all have our own teaching styles and sometimes fall into a particular pattern. Incorporate pair work if you don't usually, a game if its not particularly your "thing", more or fewer writing activities, more or less reading. Change the tempo of your class. This will add interest to both you and your students. Check out the writing ideas, speaking prompts, dialogs, and other suggestions on this site.
Cut out headlines from newspapers and have the students write articles to suit the headlines. You could choose just one and see how many different articles you get from the students, or you can cut out enough so that each student receives a different one.
After this you can have them read the original article that was written under that headline.
Have your students write a diary entry as if it were written by a famous or historical person. For example, if they have been studying Napoleon, they could write about a day of his. Or Elvis might have an interesting thing to say in his diary.
Find out who the students admire, or who they have been learning about in history, and get them to personalize them in a diary.
Here are some fun ideas for writing dialogs or acting out scenes in both the ESL or any language classroom:
Two fleas discuss their home
Two tears talk about a recent problem
Two cats gossip about the dogs in their household
Two hairs left on a bald man's head talk about life
Two flies on the wall talk about a recent event
Two pieces of old fruit remaining in a bowl talk about their lives
Two earrings discuss recent fashion
Two ants speak about their last job
See more ideas on this site for topics for dialogs
A great list could be brainstormed from the group that you are going to teach - and remember to keep their suggestions. One creative mind is much smaller than lots of brains at work!
Hello fellow teachers,