Do you want to keep your kids entertained? Instead of games, craft, computer activities or playing with toys, ask the kids to write a short story about some topics you can list and they can choose from. Kids love creating stories. Story writing can be taken seriously, or be done just for fun to express feelings or tell a tale. Ideas for these kinds of short essay/stories can be seen here on the site. Use the prompts for ideas, or think up your own. Take a title from a book they know and tell them to write their own version of the story, or show them a picture and have them create a story about it.
How often we get a quick idea, or see something that sparks a creative idea! Yet, often we can't think of something a little different to do when we're looking for an activity. My suggestion is your own "suggestion box" or "idea box". Whenever you get one of those inspirational prompts, write a quick note with the idea, or place the prompt (magazine article, gift tag for crafts, name of a song that would be perfect for a discussion) inside the box to look through when you have to find inspiration. You could keep a notebook, but it is easier just to drop the "item" in the box and it will be there waiting for you when you have the time. Keep collecting!
Students want their holiday break. These few weeks before Christmas can be arduous for both teacher and students. Testing may take up some of the time, finishing a few items left on the teaching syllabus, fill the day. However, the students are not interested in being in the classroom and the teacher has to keep things interesting (and useful) for everyone.
Crafts, drama and music are good channels to use. Craft ideas, such as making a small gift for someone for the holiday (from greeting cards to little dolls for a niece or friend), drama activities such as skits, plays, dialog role play, and music (working with pop songs for kids to sing and act out - see article with lists of pop songs on this website) are the direction that will keep everyone interested.
Games are a possibility, but they last for short periods of time and tend to make many students act up. Keeping the class busy, hopefully even intrigued, and producing a result through physical activities such as music, craft and drama will keep everyone motivated. Happy holidays!
New to Twitter, and still trying to see what effects it has in the teaching world, I pose this question. Do teachers use Twitter? Are teachers looking at Twitter to get ideas for the classroom - or are the Twitterers those who want to get their websites out to others - and not really the teachers themselves? Are teachers searching, rather, through websites to find lesson plans and ideas?
I pose this question to anyone out there in the Twittersphere and hope to note some results and hear your comments here, over the next few days or weeks. Thanking you........Lucille (Eslideas writer, teacher and developer)
Today my students had to give presentations (that they had to prepare at home) on a You Tube item. They were encouraged to choose something of interest to them and they had to present it by explaining the video to the others in the class. This was extremely effective and the students, being adults, although only at Level 2 of their English studies, were able to share topics of intrigue and interest.
We saw a wide arrange of choices, from Korean ice skaters, Gangnam style, sand art, How it is Made (pencils) to a lion recognizing its human friends. All the students loved the lesson, and I was able to see the improvement of the work in each student.
You tube is a great resource for getting students to listen to English, or watch and write about something. Here is a lovely You Tube video that is not only cute, but enables discussion, and brings in some new vocabulary, such as wood shavings, wood chips, having fun, rolling in, playing with, or even basics such as elephant, baby, trunk and zoo.
Add a craft element to a lesson. Do a project such as origami, decorating a paper plate, making a gift card. Crafts in the classroom demand the use of instructional vocabulary, and good listening skills. No doubt, for most, it is also a lot of fun. Choice of project will depend on the age, sex and level of the students - don't force every class to do a handwork project.
To introduce crafts, youtube is a great way to show students basics of listening to instructions. Youtube has thousands of art videos of how to make all kinds of craft items.
Practicing grammar through role play is an effective, enjoyable way to repeat structures and vocabulary. It isn't too difficult to write your own dialogs for your students, or even get them to write their own after you have taught them the new structure. Collect all the student-made dialogs, check them, type them up and distribute them to other students for practice. Furthermore, you can keep them in a folder and use them with your next class when they start the same section. See the list of grammar dialog scripts on this site.
In the ESL classroom, warm-up activities are very important. Not only is it a friendly, all-inclusive first step to ensure that each student gets a turn, but also enables a cool down from a previous lesson, creates a segue to welcome the students, interests them immediately yet also demands instant answers in an unstressed environment. It subtly says to the students, "Look, we are having fun, but you can't sit back or sleep in this lesson, you have to participate".
Warm up activities can consist of any kind of activity, but the idea is to keep it short and fun. Examples: a quick game, a "round-robin" answering a given question by the teacher, a riddle or abstract picture already displayed on the board to prompt a response, a handing out of pictures and asking for some kind of opinion, answer or pair work discussion, very short dialog role play on the board (abstract dialogs are good for high level students), a singular prop/visual object for discussion. This will also be interesting for you, the teacher.
Hello fellow teachers,
I am a teacher of ESL and Drama. With over 38 years of experience in a number of countries, I enjoy sharing creative ideas to help both teachers and students teach and learn in a positive atmosphere