LESSON PLAN: Is applying for future jobs really less painful

January 2021 – This (online) lesson plan talks about ways to identify the ideal career for someone who is looking for their first position or wants/needs to change their job – and maybe face up to a job title which simply didn’t exist some years ago. The main part deals with a text describing real and potential future jobs, which is followed by a 2019 TEDTalk about algorithms that could enable recruiters understand people’s potentials better. The tasks expose students to a number of quizzes and ways to think about themselves, their skills and their strengths. Students need to be at B1+ level or higher to benefit from these exercises.

YL LESSON PLAN – Daily routines and question formation

January 2021 – Online lessons with Young Learners are challenging for many reasons: apart from problems with internet connection, tired eyes and the demotivating fact of not being really together with their peers, it also forces kids into a very passive sitting life style. You need to consider that kids are usually not really comfortable with opening different types of documents (pdf, doc, etc.) and it is also difficult for the teacher to monitor their written work (checking for spelling mistakes, for instance). In this post, I’d like to propose a lesson plan to teach daily routines to kids online, giving some suggestions how to make them move and become engaged. The lesson plan bases on Cambridge University Press Fun for Movers and uses exercises from page 82-83.

Online English lessons and coding with YL (Part Three)

January 2021 – This is the last part of a three-post serie, giving suggestions on how to use Scratch codes in teaching English to Young Learners (above all in online lessons). In the first part, I describe simple animations to revise numbers and prepositions of place, while in the second post, mazes were proposed to practice giving directions and question-answer animations. This time, I invite you to adventure into the Scratch world of quizzes and stories.

Online English lessons and coding with YL (Part Two)

January 2021 – In my previous post, I suggested that teachers giving online lessons to YL try out some alternative tasks using the programming language Scratch. This coding program was customized for elementary school students to introduce them to the universe of algorithms, sequencing, variables and others. So the main aim of the Scratch project is to teach coding to pupils. However, Scratch could come in really handy when giving online English lessons to Young Learners. In Part One, you can read about how to practise numbers and prepositions of places with Scratch animations. In this post, I’d like to propose ways to practise giving directions and asking vs. answering questions – hidden in coding.

Online English lessons and coding with YL (Part One)

January 2021 – As many of my colleagues, I ended up teaching completely online nearly a year ago. With teen and adult classes, the switch to online lessons was surprisingly smooth. However, things were not as easy with Young Learners (YL). Mainly, because parents – among them myself – were worried about how much time their children spent in front of different screens and secondly, because my students were used to lessons full of movement and games. We desperately needed inspiration. It came from one of the many Future Learn courses.

LESSON PLAN – Christmas in a different light

December 2020 – This is an unusual lesson plan about Christmas, suitable for B2-C1 students: it consists of a variety of speaking tasks, a longer article to read from ideas.ted.com and also a TEDTalk to watch. The aim of the lesson is to discuss Christmas in an unconventional way: instead of discussing consumerism and myths&legends of Christmas, here students can exchange ideas about 2020’s very odd Christmas experience in lock-down and a very positive talk from 2014 given by Jose Miguel Sokoloff explaining how Christmas might open up people’s mind even in war-torn places.

LESSON PLAN: Work-out & gym vocabulary

December 2020 – This is a multi-skill lesson plan teaching and revising vocabulary linked to the topics ‘gym’ and ‘work-out’. It follows the methodology of the so-called ‘flipped classroom’. Students are expected to do some pre-lesson task and the lesson is based on this pre-study.

LESSON PLAN – Regular and irregular verbs in simple past

December 2020 – This lesson plan revises regular and irregular verbs in simple past form. It can be used at A2 level, but there are extra materials proposed for irregular verbs at B1 level. The worksheet offers tasks to an animated short film ‘Paperman’ (as a visual input, since the film is voiceless) and to a song (River Deep – Mountain High by Celine Dion). The main focus is on questions: the grammar analysis provides a useful list of all question forms students should be familiar with at A2-B1 level.

LESSON PLAN – Regular verbs in simple past

December 2020 – This lesson plan introduces or revises regular verb forms in simple past. It’s target level is A1-A2. The exercises also revise vocabulary linked to ‘restaurants’, a lexical field students are often exposed to even at lower levels while traveling. The short video to watch is the end scene of the animated Disney/Pixar film ‘Ratatouille’. There are also materials included to practice pronunciation of the -ed ending and spelling.

LESSON PLAN – Irregular verbs in simple past

December 2020 – This lesson plan can be adapted to YL lessons, but also adults might find the videos engaging. The aim of this lesson is to introduce or revise irregular verb forms in simple past. The lesson plan works on two short videos: an animated short film (Snack Attack) and a scene from Kung-Fu Panda 2. Students are also offered interactive exercises to memorize irregular verbs at A1-A2 level.

ESL-BRAINS – B1-C1 video worksheets from Poland

December 2020 – When I started teaching online, I first stuck to the course books I had been using for years. I had been familiar with the online extensions, I had already worked on the Cambridge LMS and used all multimedia materials available to my favourite course books. I had even had experience with e-books. However, very soon I realized that online teaching offers way more possibilities than only a digital copy of a face-to-face lesson.

FREE TEST-BANK: TEST-ENGLISH

December 2020 – When I started teaching online I kept going back to one website to test my students’ grammar knowledge in test-teach-test approach. At the beginning, it was a simple blog, however, it has grown up to a prodigious test bank. Today, I invite you to visit the TEST-ENGLISH website.

WUP: TWO THINGS WE HAVE IN COMMON

December 2020 – THIS IS a Warm-up/Lead-in exercise you can print and use in your next grammar/conversation lesson. The task is to complete the questionnaire (by giving two answers to different questions) and then mingling around in the classroom to find someone who has these two things in common (which is not as easy as it seems).

GRAMMAR: THIRD CONDITIONAL TIPS AND IDEAS

November 2020 – Third conditional is a tough grammar point and it’s also difficult to make students practise it, since it is not so often used in real life situations. Doing automatized exercises seems to work for the moment, but fails on the long run. To help students memorize the structure, you might want to spend some time making them do different engaging activities over a couple of lessons. Here are some ideas how they could practice third conditional sentences.

HOW TO TACKLE IELTS BAND 7 SPEAKING

November 2020 – Before sending your student to do any speaking exam, you should show them a video of a real oral exam and also rehearse it with them. Here is one way how you could do it. The post concentrates onto IELTS Band 7, but you can adapt it to any other exam. The lesson is designed for an online individual course.

GRAMMAR: SIMPLE PAST (ONLINE LESSON)

November 2020 – This is a lesson plan teaching and revising regular and irregular verbs in simple past. Students need to be at high A1-A2 level, but you can also use this lesson for a revision lesson at B1 level. The lesson plan is written for an online lesson.

SPICE UP YOUR LESSON WITH A SONG – Grammar & Vocabulary through Listening

November 2020 – Songs are an evergreen possibility to lead into a new topic or introduce a new grammatical structure, they can be an excellent exercise to wind down a lesson and even in between two exercises, they are good for making students relax and prepare for the next task. In this post, I would like to show you some interactive worksheets to do while listening to some great classics and also some newer hits – with embedded YouTube videos.