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TEFL Articles

A selection of articles and essays related to the teaching of English as a second or foreign language. If you wish, you can submit an article for possible publication.

10 Tips for Games in the ESL Classroom
From the creator of the world’s best-selling ESL board game—ten practical ideas on using games when teaching English

On Using Games in the ESL Classroom
Matt Errey looks at competitive versus co-operative games, and healthy versus unhealthy competition

Teaching Pronunciation is Important
This article speaks about the importance of teaching pronunciation, or accent reduction, to all ESL students, and includes ideas for lesson plans.

From Trainee Teacher to DoS and Beyond
Teachers need career pathways because if they don’t know where they’re going how can they expect others to follow?

Assessment and Evaluation Ideas
A look at strategies for assessing and evaluating students considering a specific group

How to Teach Modals of Possibility/Probability/Deduction
Short but thorough guide to teaching “must have done”, “can’t be”, etc.

If It Can Be Done At Home, Don’t Do It In Class
How to stop wasting class time.

How to Teach Giving Examples
Going beyond phrases such as “like” and “for example”.

Using Memory in EFL Classes
Using and expanding students’ memories while studying English as a foreign language.

First Lessons for Academic English Classes
How to start English for Academic Purposes classes in a pleasant and useful way.

How to Teach Clothes Vocabulary to Young Learners
What clothes vocabulary to teach and how to do so, including introducing loads of fun.

7 Word Formation Games
Fun classroom activities for prefixes and suffixes, especially useful for FCE, CAE and other exam classes.

How to Teach the Language of Prohibition
Presentation and practice ideas for adults and young learners studying “You can’t…”, “… isn’t allowed”, etc.

Games to Practise Want/Want to
Fun activities to practise talking about desires.

EFL Lessons on Parks
All kinds of lessons on the vital topic of green spaces in our towns and cities.

How to teach body parts to kids
An overview of which body words to teach and how.

How To Teach Want/Want To
How to present and practise a much neglected and badly taught verb for expressing desires.

How To Teach Requests
Presentation and practice of polite requests in communication inside and outside the classroom, including typical student problems.

Movement In Adult Classes
When and how to use TPR-like activities with adult learners.

EFL lessons on gardens and gardening
All kinds of lessons on a pleasant and surprisingly popular topic, also suitable for ESP students such as landscape architects.

TPR Games – Can/Can’t For Ability
Games with miming and other movement for the pronunciation and meaning of can and can’t.

9 Fun Activities for Can/Can’t for Ability
Ways of adding fun and loads of other useful language to what is usually your students’ introduction to modal verbs.

How To Teach Prepositions Of Position To Young Learners
A quick summary of what prepositions to teach kids and how to do so.

The Importance of Good Teacher-Student Relations
One of the main factors in achieving student satisfaction and getting the most out of your lessons is positive teacher-student relations.

Video tasks for prepositions of position
The unusual but suprisingly fun and effective combination of televisual images and words like “above” and “between”.

Drawing and crafts activities for prepositions of position
The great combination of artistic activities and words like “on”, “in” and “under”.

TPR Activities For Prepositions Of Position
Total Physical Response activities to practise on, under, next to etc with young learners.

Realia And Flashcard Activities For Prepositions Of Position
Ways of revising vocabulary as you present prepositions like “on” and “above”, or revising prepositions like these as you present new vocabulary.

How To Teach The Language Of Opinions
Teaching the language that students need in order to give and ask for opinions, rather than just asking them to do so.

Classroom Activities For The Language Of Opinions
Much more intensive language of agreeing and disagreeing etc than just the usual discussion questions.

Adding Language To Crafts
Ways to make sure craft activities develop students’ English ability as much as their artistic skills.

How To Teach Shapes To Young Learners
How to teach the CLILtastic topic of shapes, also vital for cutting down on L1 in classroom instructions.

Create Your Own Teaching English Job
Connor Davies offers tips for TEFL teachers who dream of self-employment.

How To Deal With Difficult Questions From One-To-One Students
Students often use the freedom of one-to-one classes to ask too many unimportant questions or questions the teacher can’t answer off the top of their head. This article offers some solutions.

How To Teach Kids Numbers 1 to 10
Stimulating and efficient ways of teaching the basics of numbers to young learners.

Native Speaker Myth: Death, Burial and Funeral of a Fallacy
A video about the native speaker myth.

Tying Functional Language In With Your Syllabus
Making sure that all classes get lots of functional language and that those lessons are useful for everyone.

Alternatives To Spoken Error Correction
Other ways to improve accuracy for the many times when simple correction of oral errors isn’t the best way.

Linking Cultural Training And Grammar
Fitting cultural information in with a grammatical syllabus without taking up extra time.

How To Teach Formal And Informal Language
Practical ideas for teaching polite language and friendly language.

Tying In IELTS Speaking Part Two
Tying the extended speaking task in with the rest of the IELTS exam.

Teaching Ideas On The Topic Of Cities
Practical suggestions for the popular topic of urban areas.

12 Reasons Not To Be Afraid Of An Interactive Whiteboard
Reassuring tips and messages for people new to IWBs.

Functional Language For IELTS Speaking
The most important language for all parts of the IELTS Speaking exam.

Activities For Ordinal Numbers
Stimulating practice for “first”, “second”, “twenty third” etc.

Teaching Grammar In Business English Classes
Looking at the practicalities of bringing grammar into classes that are mainly about business communication.

Practice for modals of possibility/probability
Stimulating ways of practising must/may/might/could/can’t for speculation.

Classroom Activities For IELTS Reading
Easier, more fun, more challenging and more useful classroom tasks for IELTS Reading.

How To Teach Teleconferencing In English
A practical guide to helping students cope with this most challenging and most modern of skills.

What Your Students Need To Know About Thanking In English
Things to teach to students of all levels about the most important kind of politeness.

Thanking Activities
Entertaining ways to practise expressing gratitude.

Planning And Paragraphing Activities
Stimulating ways of quickly improving your students’ vital writing skills of planning and paragraphing.

What Your Students Need To Know About BULATS Writing Part One
How students can boost their score in the first part of the BULATS Writing exam.

Guessing Games For Third Person S
Fun practice for one of the most common mistakes in English, including ideas useable with levels from False Beginner.

What Your Students Need To Know About Emailing
Things you need to cover to really teach the vital skill of emailing in English.

Fun Adverbs Of Frequency Activities
Entertaining speaking activities for “always”, “sometimes”, “never” etc, as well as similar expressions like “once every two months” and “three times a day”.

Names In The English Language Classroom
Issues associated with the use of student and teacher names in class.

Teaching Names
Practical tips on bringing up the topic of names in the ESL classroom.

Alphabet Pronunciation Activities For Adults
Ways to teach pronunciation and recognition of the English alphabet, including in fast connected speech

Typical Problems Pronouncing the Alphabet
A summary of problems different students have with saying and recognising the English alphabet, including in connected speech

Minimal Pairs
Minimal pairs are underexploited. This article looks at how teachers can teach pronunciation with minimal pairs, with some specific ideas for classroom use.

Minimal Pairs Games
Fun pronunciation games using pairs of words that vary by one sound only

Fun Homophones Activities
Games to introduce and practise the important point of words that sound the same but are spelt differently

Homophones in the EFL Class
Reasons to use homophones in teaching English and lots of ways to do so

Fun Activities For Weather Vocabulary
Making the clichéd topic of weather interesting, relevant and linked to other useful language

Dealing with dominating students
Activities and classroom dynamic techniques for coping with students who take over

10 Fun Activities For Adjectives Of Personality
Stimulating activities to teach and practise the difficult but fascinating topic of words that describe people’s character

Politically correct language in the EFL classroom
Suggestions for bringing the topic of political correctness into class in interesting ways, and for dealing with PC issues when they come up naturally

10 Fun Activities For Teaching Clothes Vocabulary
Ten entertaining ways to present and practise the names of clothes and ways of describing them, with activities for all ages and levels

Gender in the language classroom
Classroom issues connected to gender and interesting ways of using that topic in classes of various ages

Fun Activities For Clothes Vocabulary 2
More fun activities based on the names of clothes and how to describe them. For all ages and levels.

Noises in the English classroom
How to use real and pretend noises to liven up the class, make the language memorable, and teach a useful emergency communication technique

Fun Activities For Language Of Emotions
Using TPR, drawings, stories and games to make feelings vocabulary memorable and fun

Online Professional Development for ELT
Upgrade your TEFL skills for free in your own time.

Questions about TEFL Training
Are you thinking about taking a TEFL training course? Are you a recent TEFL graduate? Please participate in this Q and A. There’s a treat at the end!

Student Interest Survey
Questions to ask when your classroom is feeling lifeless

How to be a Tech Mentor
If tech is your thing, you likely know about the weekly #edchat on #Teacher Tuesday that takes place on Twitter. This week’s #edchat focused on technology. While the topic was whether or not it is possible for teachers to make the wrong choices when using tech in the classroom, many of the contributors focused on […]

Teacher Challenge 2010
EnglishClub learners are challenged every day. Here is a challenge for the English teachers!

Respect in the Classroom
You know from your own time at school that there were some teachers who you just did not mess around with.

ESL Channels on YouTube
EnglishClub.com now has a YouTube channel. Here are some other popular ones for ESL learners.

Treat your Students to a Quote-of-the-Day
Use quotes as icebreakers, warmers, discussion topics, vocabulary lessons, and more…

Clean Up your Computer Week
Have you cleaned your computer lately? Spend a week getting your computer in top shape for a new school year.

Help Students Water their Own Plants
Teach students to survive language learning by being active participants.

Top 10 things English teachers do on Twitter
How teachers of English are using twitter professionally and personally

Presenting Vocabulary in YL Classes
Be creative. Be appealing. Be quick. To make sure your students will remember all the new words you taught them, be fun and have fun as well!

Ideas on Classroom Management in YL Classes
Tips to make your Young Learner classes work like magic

Cool Corporate English Consciousness
Giving your corporate classes the best approach

Two Gateways for Teachers of English
Review of EnglishClub and TEFL.net

Word Up Review by Alex Case
The biggest hit in our school this year

Guide to Teaching EFL in France
An EFL teacher shares her experience of teaching in central France

Hands off that e-dictionary!
The (few) merits and (many) disadvantages of e-dictionaries from the author's point of view

Lexis - the new grammar?
How new materials are finally challenging established course book conventions

Marketing Your Language Program 101
The basics to successful promotion of your courses

A Student Like Me
Suggestions for those who aspire to re-enter the classroom to get a degree

Motivation and Motivating in EFL

Coursebook: Take it or leave it
We do not have to dispense with the textbook. We only have to disabuse ourselves of the tendency to take a coursebook as gospel.

Intellect or Affect?
Intellect or affect? one may ask. Certainly both. We should not view them as two forces vying with each other, but as the ends of a continuum that is called self-awareness and spiritual elevation.

Speaking Practice through Presentations

Are You Netting the World's best ESL Resource?

Classroom: Forum or Arena?
A look at some of the factors that play an important role in the teaching-learning situation.

Neuro-Linguistic Programming (NLP) and Language Learning

SAC Shock!!
Tips for self access centres

Should ESL Instructors Speak Other Languages in the Classroom?

20 Presentation Tips for Your Students

Cutting Out Cutting Up
Tips for lesson plans

How Was the Dip?
A personal reflection on the DELTA

Notes on Using Video in the Language Classroom

The Cultural Dynamics of Teaching

The changing winds and shifting sands of the history of English Language Teaching

Ingredients for Successful Communicative Tasks

Taking off the Training Wheels

Language and Sex
Why can't a woman be more like a man?

Accommodation Theory
Each one of us is aware that our style of speech changes in the twinkling of an eye, as it were, depending on a wide range of variables...

An Introduction to "Befogging" Idioms
Do idioms really call the shots?