ESL Writing Practice: Focus on Fluency

esl-writing

ESL Writing: Fluency + Accuracy For speaking and writing, there are two main ways to evaluate it: fluency and accuracy. Fluency is how fast you are able to do it. Accuracy is how good your grammar and vocabulary are. It’s more complicated than that, but that’s the simple explanation! Keep that in mind as you read the rest of this article. Don’t Forget Fluency Practice Most English writing classes and textbooks focus on accuracy. It’s much easier for a book, or teacher to point out grammar and vocabulary errors than to teach you to write quickly. However, it’s important to…

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Top 10 Blog Posts on ESL Speaking

Presentations for ESL Students

Top 10 Blog Posts of All-Time on ESL Speaking We’re going to take a little trip down memory lane with this blog post. I’ve looked back in time and found the 10 most popular blog posts here at ESL Speaking. Find out what other people have found most helpful! #1: Small Talk ESL Activity This small talk ESL activity is the most popular blog post here at ESL Speaking! Small talk is one of those extremely important skills for our students to learn. But for some reason, it’s also something that is rarely practicing in the ESL classroom. My goal…

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Vocabulary Auction: A Fun Game for ESL Students

ESL-vocabulary-auction

Vocabulary Auction: Preparation There are plenty of variations of auction games, but vocabulary has the least amount of preparation involved. It will be more fun if you have fake money, poker chips, etc. Begin by having the students list vocabulary they have been studying. Try to get at least 20 terms from them. Next, divide the class into groups of 3-4. Give each group a budget of $1000 and have them bid in increments of $50-100. (Note: if you are using money or tokens, you will need your own supply, to pay out groups who double down.) Vocabulary Auction: How…

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Top 10 ESL Activities for Adult Beginners

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Top 10 ESL Activities for Adult Beginners If you’re looking for some ESL activities for adult beginners, you’ve come to the right place! I’m going to share my Top 10 ESL Activities for Adult Beginners with you. Adult beginners can be a bit tricky to teach because although they don’t have the skills to engage in things like free talking or open discussions, they of course aren’t babies and you need to use topics, games and activities that are relevant and appropriate for them. I taught in South Korean universities for 8 years and about 5 of those years were…

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ESL Activities for Listening and Speaking

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Top 10 ESL Activities for Listening and Speaking If you’re looking for some ESL activities for listening and speaking, you’ve come to the right place! We’re going to give a brief description of our 10 favourite ESL activities that focus on two very important skills-listening and speaking. We’ll also include a link to more details about how to set up the ESL activity and use it in your classes. #1: ESL Surveys ESL surveys are one of my all-time favourite ESL Activities for listening and speaking. I love them for the following reasons: They get students up and out of…

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ESL Review Activity: Got to Hand it to You

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ESL Review Activity: Got to Hand it to You If you’re looking for an ESL review activity, you’ve come to the right place! Got to Hand it to You is kind of like a quiz show, but instead of the teacher asking questions and the students answering, everything is on paper. In groups, students read the questions and then they have to fill out an answer sheet. It’s far more student centred than the traditional “ESL Jeopardy” game and as a bonus, students have to answer all the questions instead of every 1 in 20 or so. Got to Hand…

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How to Make the Most of your Teaching Abroad Experience

You just landed a job abroad and you’re dying to get started working. This is the culmination of everything you’ve been working so hard for in the past few months, or even years. You have earned your certificate, found a job, and now you’re ready to begin. You’ve read all the blog posts about teaching English in China, every article there is on how to deal with culture shock, and now you’re wondering how you can make every second in your new country count. So what are a few ways that you can make the most out of every second?…

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Top 10 ESL Activities for Total Beginners

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Top 10 ESL Activities for Total Beginners When I first began my ESL career teaching in South Korea, I taught total beginners. It was like I got thrown into the deep end of the pool and I could barely tread water. 10 years later, with a whole lot more experience under my belt, total beginners don’t intimidate me like they used to. In some ways, I even like them better than advanced students. It’s easier to teach someone numbers and colours than the subtle differences between all the future tenses. Anyway, if you’re in the same boat I was when…

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Top 10 ESL Icebreakers: Start Your Class Off the Fun Way

ESL-icebreakers

If you’re looking to get your semester started off on the right foot, then you’ll need to use a few of these ESL icebreakers. They’ll help the students get to know each other and you as well. By starting your classes off with some ESL icebreakers, you’re setting yourself up for a successful semester. Keep reading for the top 10 ESL icebreakers. You can see the detailed activity description by clicking the links! #1: Ball Toss If you’re looking for one of the most versatile ESL activities ever, look no further than this Ball Toss one. You can use it for…well…just…

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Top 10 ESL Review Activities and Games

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If you’re looking to make sure your students understood what you taught them in a previous lesson, consider using one of these top 10 ESL review activities and games. They’re fun, engaging and interesting, which will equal happy students and happy teachers! Most of them are appropriate for just about any age or level of student, just adjust them accordingly. Click on the titles of each ESL review game to be taken to the full description of the activity. #1: Odd One Out This ESL warm-up activity is also one of my favourite ESL review activities. It’s fast, easy and…

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ESL Speaking and Listening: Agony Aunt

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ESL Speaking and Listening Activity: Agony Aunt Skills: Listening/Speaking/Reading Time: 15-20 minutes Level: High-beginner to Advanced Materials: Printed advice column questions and answers Agony Aunt if one of my favourite ESL speaking and listening activities. It will get your students talking because everyone knows how to solve other people’s problems! If your students are a bit more advanced, you can use actual advice columns. These can easily be found by searching on the Internet for “advice column” etc. The lower the students’ level, the more you’ll need to grade the language, or you can write your own advice column. It doesn’t…

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101 ESL Activities for Teenagers and Adults

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101 ESL Activities for Teenagers and Adults 101 ESL Activities: For Teenagers and Adults is a new book out on Amazon that is guaranteed to make your lesson planning easy. Save time and do the things you actually like to do instead of wasting time with too much lesson planning! It will help you out if: You’re a first time teacher who doesn’t have much experience in the classroom. All you need to do is open the book and choose a few of the activities to do in class. It’s lesson planning made easy and you can stop wasting time…

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Terrible ESL textbook: Help is Here!

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Terrible ESL Textbook Doesn’t Have to Mean a Terrible Class I remember back to the days when I first started teaching in Korean universities and how clueless I was about basically everything. That first semester, I was given a total piece of crap textbook to teach English conversation from (which shall remain nameless) for my freshman classes and of course it was a disaster. Instead of using some of theses strategies I’ll talk about in a minute, I soldiered on through the terrible ESL textbook with awful results. Don’t let a terrible ESL textbook ruin your class! It really is…

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How to Teach English Conversation

English-conversation

How to Teach English Conversation Many foreign ESL teachers abroad, especially in places like South Korea, teach predominantly English conversation classes. Some teachers (and students too!) have the perception that teaching English conversation involves just “talking” to the students. Free-talking does have a role in helping students learn English. However, it shouldn’t be the only thing we do in our English conversation classes. More than just Free-Talking There is far more to English conversation than just free-talking. In my first year of teaching, I was given a “free-talking” class with middle school students. My boss told me to just talk to…

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