ESL Teaching Ideas, Tips and Articles

We believe in supporting English teachers not only with enjoyable teaching activities, worksheets and games, but also with useful teaching ideas, tips and advice. In this section, we provide you with inspirational teaching ideas, indepth articles and useful tips to enhance your teaching skills and help you understand more about teaching English in the ESL environment. Whether you are a new teacher just starting out in your career, or you just need help with a certain aspect of teaching English. This section helps you to find what you are looking for.

As teachers we should never stop learning, so we have also included articles written by academics in the field of ESL to help you understand more about the process of learning English from a student's perspective, and how we as teachers can sharpen our skills to become more effective in how we teach English in the classroom.

We cover a wide variety of teaching topics, which should prove useful in establishing a pleasant and productive learning environment for your students. There are articles covering practical advice on classroom management, which is often an ongoing concern for most teachers. We also deal with topics like cultural awareness, what to do and cover on the first day of class, ideas for starting lessons, how to introduce vocabulary and deal with vocabulary queries, procedures for running different types of dictations, how to teach large, mixed-ability, and small classes, etc. The advice we offer comes from seasoned ESL and EFL professionals who have a wealth of experience in the field of teaching English. We hope you find this information useful and can incorporate what you learn here into your classes successfully.

We are always looking for people who want to share their teaching ideas, articles and tips with our users. If you have any teaching ideas or articles that you would like to post on the site, please contact us.

The teaching ideas, tips and articles are listed below:
This article discusses the way certain activities lend themselves to particular classroom interaction patterns and when they are best used. The article provides insight into the benefits of teacher-centered activities including monologues, close-ended questions, and choral response, and student-centered activities including group work and pair work, open-ended questioning as well as full-class interactions.
This article offers useful guidance and strategies on ESL classroom management to help you effectively control your classes with minimal disruption. The article covers some key areas of classroom management that include the physical classroom setup, establishing and maintaining authority, tips on starting a lesson, managing activities, dealing with critical moments, monitoring and using rewards.
This article offers practical advice on how to use and ask effective concept checking questions to gauge your students' understanding of a concept or language point. The article includes useful examples and provides various methods that you can use to check your students' comprehension.
This article provides useful tips and advice on cultural awareness for ESL/EFL teachers. The article explores important cultural considerations that teachers need to think about when teaching students from other countries. The article also discusses two common teaching scenarios, teaching mixed culture classes and single culture classes.
Here is an article on ways to help students develop their listening skills in English. The article introduces some principles to consider in the teaching of listening, looks at some of the processes involved in comprehension, discusses a scaffolded approach to instruction and ends by looking at strategies that learners can employ to develop their listening skills.
This article introduces teachers to some useful and practical approaches that help develop students' reading skills. The article also discusses key concepts for understanding the reading comprehension process along with some activities that help improve students’ reading skills.
This article discusses some important factors to consider when looking at ways to help students develop their English speaking skills. The article also provides useful tips and introduces some effective speaking activities for developing fluency and building confidence in speaking.
This article introduces a number of effective ESL eliciting techniques and offers guidance on when and how to employ them. These techniques help to increase learner participation and are a great way to access students' knowledge and understanding of vocabulary, grammar, concepts, and topics.
On this page, we offer a wide range of fun and flexible ESL dictation activities that can be used to help improve students’ listening comprehension skills and review language points such as grammar and vocabulary. All resources come with easy to follow instructions and some activities include model texts that can either be used as is or adapted to fit your own needs.
Here is a useful article that presents ten different ways to effectively begin an ESL lesson. The article covers a variety of interesting techniques for starting a class with an overview for each one as well as some practical ideas and tips to help get your students ready to learn and engage in the class.
This must-read article discusses ways teachers can incorporate music into their ESL classes. The article also provides practical tips and engaging ideas for using music to help your students learn English. The information provided is particularly handy for those who have considered using music in their classes but are unsure how.
This article explores the process of ESL lesson planning and provides practical advice and tips for teachers on developing lesson plans in order to make lessons more relevant, purposeful and effective. The article covers a range of topics that include setting lesson aims, activity selection, timing, sequencing, and ways of increasing student interaction.
This article discusses how to make teaching activities and materials relevant for your ESL students. The article also demonstrates how to apply this knowledge to adapt resources to fit your students’ needs and make the best use of the resources you have.
This informative article explores typical problems that students face when learning English. The article focuses on three broad factors, anxiety, motivation and learning strategies, and provides practical tips to help mitigate their impacts.
This article provides tips and ideas for teaching English idioms to your students. The article covers topic-based approaches and how to choose authentic examples as well as effective activities and games that help students learn idioms and use them correctly.
This article gives practical ideas, advice and effective activities for teaching English vocabulary. The article also discusses vocabulary acquisition, the vocabulary learning needs of learners according to their level, learning vocabulary through context, and explains how to use two well-known word lists.
This article looks at some of the challenges related to teaching large ESL classes. It offers practical teaching tips and advice on improving student participation and engagement and presents suggestions on how to mitigate problems large class sizes pose.
This article discusses the challenges teachers face when teaching mixed-ability ESL classes and offers guidance, effective strategies and activities on how to overcome these issues and help students get the most out of these classes.
This article discusses aspects of teaching small size classes. It looks at some of the challenges that small classes can present and the opportunities they afford along with some useful suggestions and advice.
This popular ESL article gives useful ideas and tips on what you should do and cover in the first lesson to help you and your students get the most out of the first day of class. The article covers topics such as how to make a good first impression, introducing yourself, and establishing a rapport with and between students. The article also suggests useful games and activities and provides guidance on establishing class rules, explaining the course, seating arrangements, using names, dealing with phones, and the approach to take with different age groups.
This article provides useful teaching advice and practical tips on how to effectively use correction and feedback with students in an ESL class through self-correction, peer-correction, and teacher to student correction.
This article explores how to effectively use song gap-fills with ESL students to help improve their English. The article also discusses the purpose of song gap-fills, design considerations, frameworks, variations and procedures.

ESL Essentials eBook Series

New Teaching Resources eBooks

Now Available!

Get Started Here