ELT Experiences

Experiences for English Language Teaching

By - Martin Sketchley

What Book Do I Need For Online Teaching?

In my previous post, I recommended one book for online teachers which really helped me gain the confidence for online English teaching. In this post, I look at another book which will provide an opportunity for students to interact online via a platform which has been developed to coincide with either their digital online or face-to-face lessons. This book has been co-authored by Lindsay Clandfield and Jill Hadfield and is published with the support of Cambridge University Press, under the series of the Cambridge Handbook for Language Teachers.

By - Martin Sketchley

Teaching Tips Episode 9: Nine Ways To Teach Vocabulary

In this Teaching Tips Episode, I look at Nine Ways To Teach Vocabulary for the English classroom. In this video, I attempt to share nine ways (not ten ways) to teach vocabulary in the classroom. The nine ideas include:

  1. Using Flashcards
  2. Drawing Pictures on the Whiteboard
  3. Using Word Families
  4. Matching Definitions
  5. Highlighting Wordstress
  6. Removing Vowels
  7. Teaching Common Collocations
  8. Matching Opposite and Related Words
  9. Playing Language Games
  10. THERE IS NO TEN!!! (my mistake)

What do you think is important for students when they are learning vocabulary? How do you teach vocabulary in the ESL / EFL classroom? Let us know in the comments section below.

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What would you like to see in the next Teaching Tips video next week? Let me know in the comments.

See you next week, on Tuesday at 7pm (UK time), for Teaching Tips.

Previous Teaching Tips Episode: The Phonemic Chart.

By - Martin Sketchley

Five Icebreakers in the EFL Classroom

Those dreaded first lessons do not have to be stressful. Watch the video below for some ideas on five icebreakers in the EFL classroom.

What activities or techniques do you incorporate in your first lessons? Have you tried any ideas in the video?

By - Martin Sketchley

“Wacky Races” Lesson Plan

I few months ago, I was sitting with my Director of Studies and some teachers and we were discussing of ways to engage some Colombian young learners with material in relation to cars. One idea that was thought up was the old TV series, “Wacky Races”. I sat down for a half a week and created a lesson around this TV series. If you have never watched “Wacky Races” before, I would definitely recommend watching the following clip below. It is funny to know that the TV series was first shown on TV in 1968. Some of the best TV series never get old.

By - Martin Sketchley

Top Ten Tips for Teaching English to Primary Learners

A few weeks ago, I was honoured to teach a group of Chinese primary learners (aged between 4 and 8 years of age) for the first time in a long time. The last time that I had taught primary-aged English language learners was in my initial few years of teaching in South Korea. However, it was a rewarding and highly motivating group of learners to teach. Fortunately, I had a chance to reflect much of my knowledge and awareness of primary learners from a Young Learner Extension Certificate which I undertook a number of years ago. With much reflection and consideration, I have now thought of my top ten tips for teaching primary learners.

By - Martin Sketchley

Classroom Community Builders: Book Review

Introduction

I was kindly asked a few weeks ago by Alphabet Publishing to review a recent publication, ““, written by Walton Burns. After a few weeks of waiting, the book finally arrived along with a personalised letter from the publisher.

The publisher, Alphabet Publishing, is one of those small independent organisations which specialise with practical ideas for teaching and lesson ideas. The first book that I reviewed for them was “” as a video book review. You can watch the video below or find out a bit more from a previous blog post.

By - Martin Sketchley

Twenty Ideas to Make Your Lessons More Exciting

A teacher training session looked at 20 ways to make your lessons more exciting and engaging. Please find below a video of the training session, the PowerPoint slides as well as a Handout which was provided to each of the attendees.

By - Martin Sketchley

Teaching Ideas for Word Stress

pronunciation-practice-activities
Pronunciation Practice Activities” by Martin Hewings

So the past few months, I have been focusing more and more on pronunciation for all levels of learners, no matter whether they are young learners or adult learners of English. Anyhow, I tried out a new lesson idea today which was partly inspired from the wonderful book, “Pronunciation Practice Activities“, written by Martin Hewings. I would recommend any teacher worth their salt to purchase this book, as it offers some great pronunciation lesson ideas which could be incorporated into class immediately.

Most teachers would identify word stress with the teaching of new vocabulary or as a technique to support pronunciation for problematic lexical items. This is all well and good but it reminds me of a teacher reacting to issues rather than proactively focusing on areas of language learning. Personally, if a teacher is able to develop a lesson based around pronunciation and developing learners’ awareness of pronunciation, so much the better. There is by no means anything wrong by reacting to pronunciation issues as they arise but I think it would be a nice change of focus when we remind learners that there are some basic principles that they can learn no matter how large or small the lexical item. Nevertheless, lets look at one lesson idea which is published in “Pronunciation Practice Activities“.

By - Martin Sketchley

Improving Spelling with Elementary Learners

Hello all. It is almost the Lunar New Year, so a huge congratulations to those readers from China and the Far East who will be commencing their celebrations soon. Today, we are looking at how to improve spelling with elementary or low-level learners, particularly if they are from an Arabic background.

It is notoriously difficult to improve or develop an Arabic learners. There are some important things you could consider incorporating in class such as unscrabbling letters to make the words, removing the vowels from words and students have to write them in words and, one of my favourite activities, using Scrabble tiles in class. Watch the video below to see how I use them in class by getting learners to review spelling and vocabulary.