June 2016

Monthly Archives

  • Keep Your Pace Dynamic

    It may sound a lot simpler to let your students play a game for 40 minutes, but you run the risk of letting their enthusiasm fizzle out. Instead of planning one long activity, break up the class into smaller, 10 to 15-minute tasks, and briskly take them from one to the next. A good pace […]

  • Crack Open the Dictionary

    Keep an English-English dictionary in your classroom or encourage students to have a dictionary app on their phones, like Merriam-Webster’s. When students are working on their own or in small groups, and one of them asks about the meaning of a word, give them the dictionary and tell them to look it up. This creates […]

  • Don’t Jump in, Lead in

    When you’re about to teach a tricky verb tense or expression, don’t jump in with an example. Instead, lead in by using what your students already know. For example, if you’re teaching a phrase like “make an appointment”, first ask them if they can go see their doctors whenever they like without calling first. When […]

  • Add Variety

    Variety is one of the keys to keeping students engaged. Play different games, sing different songs, and as soon as an activity gets stale, replace it with another your students will enjoy a lot more. Introducing variety keeps your students from getting bored and knowing exactly what comes next. Surprise them every now and then!

  • Mix it Up!

      Students need to develop different skills, not just English conversation. Follow up a discussion with a listening task. Then use an interesting reading as a jumping-off point for a writing assignment. Try to practice each different skill at least once in each lesson to give your students the chance to work on improving each.

  • Get to Know Them

    Do you know what your students like to do on weekends? Do any of them have any really interesting hobbies? Have they lived in other foreign countries? You should learn the answers to these questions out of more than just curiosity. Any and all information you gather from your students will help you to personalize […]

  • Make Sure Expectations Are Realistic

    Students, especially adult learners, often start the course with expectations that are far from realistic. Do they want to speak English perfectly? Take a difficult international examination? When adjusting expectations, don’t emphasize what they won’t be able to do. Instead, focus on what they will accomplish. Bring their expectations down a notch and express them […]

  • Incorporate Your Students’ Culture(s)

      Your students are learning English and a great deal about American or English culture, but that does not mean you have to completely ignore their own. If you have a multicultural classroom, have students share information about their national holidays, customs or special ways in which they celebrate holidays like Christmas.

  • Create Some Friendly Competition

      Students are naturally competitive, so when you give them opportunities to compete, they will be highly motivated. Have them compete for points, special prizes or simply the chance to have their names written on the “Winner’s Circle”. Who can come up with the biggest list of words related to foods in 60 seconds? Who […]

  • Exploit their Talents

    Do you have a student who can play the guitar? How about some with artistic talent? Are there any who can juggle? Use these talents to inject some personalized fun into your class and boost their confidence. While students are struggling to learn a new skill, they can relax while they show their classmates something […]