~~Whatsit: "Whatsit" uses verbs or nouns. Have one learner sit with their back to the board and another learner writes or draws a mystery word they all know on the board (word cards can be used to prompt where necessary). The guesser must then ask questions to guess the word using “whatsit” in place of the unknown word e.g. if verbs are being used: "Can you whatsit?", "When do you whatsit?" If nouns are being used: "Can you eat a whatsit?", "Can you wear a whatsit?" etc
Forbidden Words: Write three ‘forbidden’ words on the board, e.g. blue, car, night. Have one learner volunteer and the rest of the class asks questions to try and get them to use the forbidden words. E.g. S2 - What colour is my shirt? S1 – It’s the colour of the sky S2 – When do you sleep? S1 – When it is dark. Etc.
Words from Words: Write a fairly long English word on the board. Set a time limit of 3-5 min. In pairs learners make as many words as they can using only the letters of the word on the board. E.g. ...
~~Stand up/Sit Down: Young children enjoy this simple game. Give a command and the children respond as quickly as possible. Then give the wrong command i.e. stand up when they are already standing etc. This can be adapted into a Simon Say type game where the children respond only when the caller says ‘please’. Children can take the teacher’s role.
Greetings Theatre: Every lesson should begin with greeting but they can also be used as an acting/drama game. Have two or more children walking around the table in opposite directions. When they meet each other they must greet each other. This can be extended to incorporate other QAs. Note: ‘Theatre’ should be an event rather than random. Have the learners who are not participating to sit at one end of the room as an audience, they could clap in time, teacher ‘sells popcorn’ etc. Make sure all learners get a chance to perform.
Alphabet Relay: Line up the learners in two teams as far from the board as possible. The first person in each team ...
Parsing English sentences is a great way to learn about English grammar, and to master practical skills.
Here are some steps to practise parsing.
(1) Find the verbs, determine whether they are Active (Action of Verb) or Passive (Received action of Verb).
(2) Locate auxiliary (or helping) verbs.
(3) Identify tense of verb--(Past, present, or future).
(4) Identify subordinate clauses, and their tense.
(5) Determine the basic elements of each sentence.
(6) Identify subject of sentence--what is the sentence discussing?
(7) What type of sentence is it? Is it a statement, question, exclamation, command (imperative).
Elements of Grammar:
(1) Verbs, auxiliary verbs.
(2) Nouns, (common, proper, abstract, collective).
(3) Adjectives--describe nouns.
(4) Adverbs--qualify verbs,
(5) Conjunctions--joining words. (and, but, nor).
(6) Articles--qualify nouns. (the, that, a, an, this, that).
(7) Pronouns--used in place of nouns/pronouns. (I, you, he/she/it, we, they).
(8) Preposition--Modify nouns. ...
When we are ESL educators, we also become mentors to our students of any age from many lands. This is a two-way process which benefits both the students and mentors. We can create an environment and community where we collaborate to improve English skills, and knowledge of a new land and culture.
As the ESL students are learning, we, as their mentors, can learn from them. We can determine what our ESL students can do, not what they cannot do. Our students can seek what we offer, to share our experiences of the paths we have travelled.
There are many benefits for the mentors of ESL students, such as immense job satisfaction, when mastery of English is accomplished. We can build bridges in our rapport with our ESL students, by providing feedback and communication skills. This creates a beneficial effect, by investing in the future of our classes, and in the wider community.
As we reflect on our lessons in ESL, we can aspire to improve our perspectives, and attaining of objectives, to ...