Welcome to 'Teaching teens'. In this section you will find informative and useful articles related to all aspects of teaching English to teenagers. We also have a number of lesson plans to help students and teachers find their way around the LearnEnglish Teens website.

LearnEnglish Teens

LearnEnglish Teens learner diary

This diary offers students and teachers a step-by-step introduction to the LearnEnglish Teens website and a more motivating and communicative alternative to course book-based homework. It can be used with students with an A2+ level of English.

Teens and writing skills

Writing is becoming an increasingly important skill in today’s world. Teenagers use the written word in their own language to communicate in both social and academic contexts, and many of them will need to develop good writing skills in English too. The Writing skills practice section on LearnEnglish Teens helps teenagers to improve their writing skills for their school studies and English exams. There are activities for a range of levels from A1 to B2. Find out more about CEF levels here:

Teens and reading skills

We can help our students to become better readers by developing the subskills they need to prepare for the text, decode it and interpret it. The Reading skills practice section on LearnEnglish Teens helps teenagers to improve their reading skills for their school studies and English exams. There are activities for a range of levels from A1 to B2. Find out more about CEF levels here:

Teens and listening skills

Listening can be tricky for our learners, especially if there aren’t any visual clues to help with the meaning or if there are several speakers, background noises or different accents to contend with. However, there are activities we can do and strategies we can develop in order to enable our learners to become better listeners.

Teenagers and exams

Progress tests, end-of-term exams, end-of-year exams and official exams to name a few. Most educational systems around the globe require us to constantly assess and evaluate our teenage students’ level of English. So how can we help them be prepared and get top marks? It stands to reason that the better prepared our teens are, the better they will perform under exam conditions. This does not only mean preparing them linguistically, but also equipping them with appropriate exam strategies. Here are a few ideas to develop your students’ exam technique. You can also find information and specific exam strategy training for teenagers on LearnEnglish Teens.

Teenagers and video

As online video-sharing sites have developed, a wealth of short clips on a variety of topics have become available for classroom use. The teacher is no longer limited to school-owned cassettes or DVDs; rather, the world is at their fingertips. Learners can also access video from a number of devices, whether at school, at home or on the go.

Teenagers and reading

With literacy rates for young adults now higher than at any other time - 98 to 100 per cent in nearly all European countries and rapidly increasing in the developing world - it seems incongruous that there should be so much concern that teenagers are not reading as much as they used to. And yet, it’s still a major issue in education throughout the developed world. But the concern isn’t really about whether teens can read or not, but more about what they are reading and how much.

Teenagers and literature

Using stories and poems for language learning provides an opportunity to introduce students to a whole culture. What better way to find out about a country or English –speaking countries and challenge the stereotypes portrayed in many coursebooks? We can give students this essential background to their language learning while improving their extensive reading and language skills at the same time.

Stay safe on social media

In June 2013, the British Council's Social Media Team Child Protection team worked with CEOP to develop 5 Golden Rules to help parents and carers keep their children safe on social media. As this was a great success and was well appreciated, we would now like to continue this work. The aim of this lesson is to sensitise teenage students to the risks of social media and to raise their awareness of how to stay safe when using it.

Multicultural UK

There's a school in Cardiff, the capital city of Wales, where more than twenty languages are spoken. That's a truly multicultural school! This lesson raises students’ awareness of the UK’s cultural diversity by watching a short video on LearnEnglish Teens. Students practise listening skills while watching the video, they discuss related topics in small groups, and then they read and talk about comments posted on the LearnEnglish Teens site.

LearnEnglish Teens magazine section

This lesson is based on the magazine section on LearnEnglish Teens and involves reading authentic ungraded texts. These blog style articles on the latest fashion, music and trends are written by young adults from the UK and the comments posted on the website responding to the articles offer ideas from teenagers of a wide range of cultures around the world. For this lesson you need students to work in groups sharing computers with internet access or using mobile devices.

School discipline

This lesson uses the School discipline resource from the UK Now section of the LearnEnglish Teens website. The lesson is a process writing lesson, which gives learners a lot of support as they write, and follows a typical process writing procedure of four stages.

Reality TV

This lesson plan uses the article Reality TV from the UK Now section of the LearnEnglish Teens website as a springboard for producing a piece of drama. Drama is a great way to motivate students in the EFL classroom, but it is important to 'prime' the class for it. The activity is based on three esssential pieces of advice.

Teaching teens: photo caption

This lesson consists of three activities to provoke discussion and provide ideas for collaborative story writing. Unusual photos from the LearnEnglish Teens photo caption section are the main focus of the lesson (