In this activity, learners attempt to re-write an inappropriately informal business letter in a more appropriate, formal style.

Class projects can be an excellent way to focus the whole class and get them working together towards a common goal.

Doing surveys can be a useful way of getting your students to interact, produce question forms and collect and analyse real information...

This is an idea I learned when I first started teaching and still use to this day. The main focus of the activity is on developing...

The present perfect is a tense that many students have problems with. Most course books provide only controlled grammar sentences where...

Here is an activity to challenge the students' reading skills at intermediate level and give them controlled speaking practice in a role...

This activity gives learners at an intermediate level and above the opportunity to use interactional language in a role-play situation...

In this speaking activity students exchange authentic personal anecdotes.

This is an idea I got from a workshop that I went to many years ago. I have used it many times since and found it to be a really useful...

Students are often asked to listen to tapes or to their teacher talking, but it can be just as useful to encourage them to listen to...

Comic strips can be used from beginner level to advanced level for a variety of language and discussion activities.

At the start of the school year I ask my students to 'Adopt a word' and share it with the class.

This is a whole-class speaking activity, needing no preparation, that gets the students practising question forms in a way that is...

This role-play can be used with learners when covering the topic of aliens, for the practice and revision of narrative tenses or as a...

This activity is designed to be used as a warmer for Intermediate level learners. It could be used to generate interest in amazing facts...

This activity is based on the real story of Merhan Karimi Nasseri, who found himself unable to leave Charles de Gaulle airport in France...

This activity trains young learners to plan a very simple story by looking at the brainstorming process prior to writing, then allowing...

This is a great way to start a lesson with a free-speaking activity. I call it ‘ARM exercises’ which is simply short for Accept, Reject...

This activity attempts to challenge some of the preconceptions that people often have about immigrants by looking at a group of artists...

This is a story-telling activity which involves the whole class, and may be used with adult or younger learners.

In the event you have students who are stressed out or just plain bored by the dull approach to teaching grammar, there's a game you can...

This activity is designed to be used when teaching or practising the difference between British and American English vocabulary.

This is a little game I have used to help students with their listening practice and it develops pronunciation awareness.

This is a game that practises vocabulary and speaking skills in the context of buying and selling. It is a great revision activity for...

This is an activity to be carried out before introducing phonemic symbols.

In this speaking activity the students tell personal stories which are prompted by pictures.

This activity looks at ways of making comparative forms by asking learners to compare things that are usually thought of as opposites....

This activity gives students maximum speaking time and helps develop fluency. The slightly ‘unusual’ classroom set-up seems to encourage...

This is a speaking activity in which learners answer questions about their past, present and future, and identify how they change.

This activity simulates ‘chatting’ – a popular (online) communication process which has features common to both speaking and writing.

If you've got a confident class with a passion for debate this activity could be the ideal way to allow learners to let off a bit of...

This series of activities enables students to practise what are traditionally called 'language skills' (reading, writing, etc.) in the...

In this speaking activity students think about and discuss a city they would like to live in for a year. The activity is based on themes...

I use this activity with higher-Elementary level students, primarily to practise vocabulary and collocations related to house and home,...

I first did this activity to supplement a unit in one of the better known Pre-Intermediate coursebooks which had a focus on school, and...

These games involve the learners sitting in a circle and working as a whole class.

This is a speaking exercise for modal verbs used to express possibility, for intermediate / upper-intermediate classes.

Learners have a lot of ideas about how they should learn a language and it is important to encourage them to discuss these and to...

At the start of a CLIL art and design course pupils will need to know the English words for the equipment they will be using in class....

It is often necessary to recycle new words several times in class before they become part of learners' active vocabulary, and the same...

I like to use this activity to promote the use of the comparative form. It is a fun guessing game that encourages creativity.

A short but fun way to revise comparatives and superlatives is to give students a blank piece of paper and ask them to draw an easy to...

Why not play a game of consequences with a difference, where students must take on the role of another person?

This is a creative-writing exercise in which the teacher moulds the story but allows plenty of scope for the students' creative...

Vokis are great for practising speaking skills with learners of all ages. Creating an animated character and giving it a voice is really...

This activity really makes writing in class fun. I have used this activity for years and it has always been a hit. It's good practice...

This is a writing and speaking activity using the silent-method to practise the vocabulary of daily routines, present simple and telling...

This is a great activity for getting students talking. I have used it successfully with many different levels and age groups and have...

This game can be adapted for matching definitions to words or matching opposites.

This is a speaking activity based on the theme of being stranded on a desert island. It is suitable for pre-intermediate students...

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11

In this activity, learners attempt to re-write an inappropriately informal business letter in a more appropriate, formal style.

17

Class projects can be an excellent way to focus the whole class and get them working together towards a common goal.

3

Doing surveys can be a useful way of getting your students to interact, produce question forms and collect and analyse real information...

9

This is an idea I learned when I first started teaching and still use to this day. The main focus of the activity is on developing...

6

The present perfect is a tense that many students have problems with. Most course books provide only controlled grammar sentences where...

7

Here is an activity to challenge the students' reading skills at intermediate level and give them controlled speaking practice in a role...

2

This activity gives learners at an intermediate level and above the opportunity to use interactional language in a role-play situation...

0

In this speaking activity students exchange authentic personal anecdotes.

2

This is an idea I got from a workshop that I went to many years ago. I have used it many times since and found it to be a really useful...

2

Students are often asked to listen to tapes or to their teacher talking, but it can be just as useful to encourage them to listen to...

0

Comic strips can be used from beginner level to advanced level for a variety of language and discussion activities.

5

At the start of the school year I ask my students to 'Adopt a word' and share it with the class.

0

This is a whole-class speaking activity, needing no preparation, that gets the students practising question forms in a way that is...

1

This role-play can be used with learners when covering the topic of aliens, for the practice and revision of narrative tenses or as a...

7

This activity is designed to be used as a warmer for Intermediate level learners. It could be used to generate interest in amazing facts...

4

This activity is based on the real story of Merhan Karimi Nasseri, who found himself unable to leave Charles de Gaulle airport in France...

6

This activity trains young learners to plan a very simple story by looking at the brainstorming process prior to writing, then allowing...

8

This is a great way to start a lesson with a free-speaking activity. I call it ‘ARM exercises’ which is simply short for Accept, Reject...

0

This activity attempts to challenge some of the preconceptions that people often have about immigrants by looking at a group of artists...

7

This is a story-telling activity which involves the whole class, and may be used with adult or younger learners.

4

In the event you have students who are stressed out or just plain bored by the dull approach to teaching grammar, there's a game you can...

British and American English - activities
8

This activity is designed to be used when teaching or practising the difference between British and American English vocabulary.

3

This is a little game I have used to help students with their listening practice and it develops pronunciation awareness.

2

This is a game that practises vocabulary and speaking skills in the context of buying and selling. It is a great revision activity for...

3

This is an activity to be carried out before introducing phonemic symbols.

7

In this speaking activity the students tell personal stories which are prompted by pictures.

4

This activity looks at ways of making comparative forms by asking learners to compare things that are usually thought of as opposites....

2

This activity gives students maximum speaking time and helps develop fluency. The slightly ‘unusual’ classroom set-up seems to encourage...

5

This is a speaking activity in which learners answer questions about their past, present and future, and identify how they change.

1

This activity simulates ‘chatting’ – a popular (online) communication process which has features common to both speaking and writing.

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152

This is the British Council phonemic chart. Help your students hear the sounds of English by clicking on the symbols below. Click on the...

0

This activity is all about fun facts and helps adults or older teenage students to practise question forms. This activity works well...

4

If you’d like to have a first go at 'Teaching Unplugged' your aim is simply to get students to produce language and then to use the...

10

This is a motivating speaking activity for lower levels to develop fluency. 

27

These activities are all designed to motivate lower level learners to speak in pairs or small groups.

8

This jigsaw-viewing activity is based on two video clips from National Geographic’s Mega-structures series.

0

'Writing poems? No, this wouldn't work with my students!' If you feel skeptical about getting your students to try their hand at...

24

The Word Family Framework (WFF) places 22,000 words on the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).

14

Very often students know the meaning of a word but don’t know how to use it correctly. This is often because they don’t know what words...

5

This is a simple pairwork activity that can be used with low level groups to provide practice in the present simple question form – What...

1

Use this activity to practice the use of comparatives and superlatives and to introduce more complex ways of comparison.

0

This activity is based on the fun and effective game of 'whispers'. It can be used with all ages and levels in a number of ways and for...

0

This activity can be used in a number of different ways and for a number of different tenses. 

27

This is a simple speaking activity that can be used with CEFR A2 level groups to provide practice in using prepositions of place and...

2

This is an activity 'about' the internet, but it doesn't start online. In fact it has to start offline: the idea is that students try...

0

If you teach young learners who are all the same age and live in the same town, opportunities for sharing and comparing life experiences...

33

In this activity the teacher creates situations for the students to get plenty of practice with the form and meaning of the past perfect...

15

The following activities are designed to get everyone talking. They can be used with all levels because the language required to...

4

This simple activity gives higher-level students the chance to write and act in their own version of Romeo and Juliet.

0

This activity provides students with upper intermediate vocabulary for parts of the body such as blood, liver, lungs etc. and provides...

1

Response tasks are designed to give students the chance to express themselves creatively and openly, not for comprehension checking.

5

This is one of the quickest ways I know of teaching a tale and boosting students’ confidence in themselves as storytellers.

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  • First the students try to complete some trivia sentences as a warmer. Next, students work in pairs or small groups to complete a ‘Fun Facts worksheet’ and plan the questions. Then they get into pairs to check each other’s answers and practise...
  • Generating the languageHowever, remember that the most important part of 'Teaching Unplugged' for the teacher is not how you generate the emergent language (that is the language that the students produce as they are talking) but what you do with the...
  • In this activity, students work together to solve a 'cocktail stick' puzzle. Students are given plenty of support and use 'thinking time' before the speaking task. The lesson is usually successful with adults and teenagers because of the puzzle ...
  • Planning time has been shown to increase production in speaking tasks. Lower level learners often find it especially difficult to speak spontaneously, so these activities incorporate 'thinking time' during which learners can prepare for speaking by...
  • PreparationThe lesson involves a jigsaw activity where two groups of students watch two different video clips and then exchange information. The class can be divided into two groups (“expert groups”) and sent to different rooms or students can watch...
  • It is inspired by a song and has always worked for me no matter what level the students were at.Activity type: writing and group workLevel: CEFR A2+Age: teenagers or adultsAims: creative collaborative writing (poems), phonetic development (rhymes),...
  • Welcome to the 'Situations' section of our audio bank. In this recording, you hear a man and a woman talking at the end of a business meeting. During their conversation the man asks the woman out on a date. Listen to find out what she says! Click...
  • Welcome to the rants and raves section of our audio bank. In this recording, you hear a woman talking about how she joined a gym and was worried at first that she might be wasting her money. She talks about how much she loves it now and wonders...
  • Welcome to the rants and raves section of our audio bank. In this recording, you hear a man talking about how technology dominates his life during the working week. He talks about how he likes to switch off his mobile phone and computer at the...
  • Welcome to the rants and raves section of our audio bank. In this recording, you will hear a foreign student joking about the way in which British people say 'please' and 'thank you' so frequently in simple, short conversations. Click here for...
  • Welcome to the rants and raves section of our audio bank. In this recording, you hear a man talking about the British obsession with queuing and how annoying British people find it when tourists don't respect what Americans call 'standing in line'....
  • Welcome to the rants and raves section of our audio bank. In this recording, you a hear a woman, Jenny, leaving a message on her friend's answering machine, telling her that her boyfriend has just told her he wants to split up with her. Click here...
  • Welcome to the rants and raves section of our audio bank. In this recording, you hear a man raving about how fantastic his new TV recorder is. He talks about how easy it was to set up and use as well as what it can do. Click here for suggestions on...
  • Welcome to the 'situations' section in our audio bank. In this situation, you will hear a dialogue between a passenger and a check-in assistant at the airport. Click here for suggestions on how to use this and other recordings in the audio bank or...
  • It shows how words within the same family are placed at different levels and is aimed at teachers who can use it to plan courses, syllabi and lessons. The WFF is the product of an ELT research award and was designed by Richard West.What is the Word...
  • For example, students are familiar with the word party but may not know the verbs have or give that go with it and, as a result, say *make a party. This activity helps students expand their collocational knowledge of the nouns they already know, but...
  • Activity: Find out about the daily activities of another personActivity type: Information gap/exchangeLevel: Up to B1Age: Adults or Senior YLs Preparation Make one copy of the worksheet per pair, and cut into two sheets, A and B. (download the...
  • As a sub aim it also revises various lexical sets depending on the things to be compared. It can be adapted to be used for all ages although it is essential that some previous introduction to comparatives and superlatives has been done. Activity...
  • Procedure
  • I have used this activity to practise there is/are and the present continuous. However it's up to the teacher or students to decide.MaterialsPaper and pencils, orA selection of 'scene' pictures for each member of the class. The pictures should...
  • PreparationTell students they are going to review some phrases for saying where things are in a picture. Write these incomplete phrases on the board:… the top / … the bottom / … the left /  … the right / … the middle / … the cornerAsk students to...
  • PreparationBefore the lesson, make sure there is a Wikipedia entry in English for the place you're going to talk about. During the lesson, access to the internet in class is useful, though not essential; you could use print outs at the comparison...
  • One nice idea with adults, for example, is to invite them to take a 'snapshot' of their lives 5, 10 or 20 years ago, depending on their age, which they can then compare with classmates.But you can take the 'spiral' approach with young learners, and...
  • ProcedureIntroductionTo get the activity off to a good start it’s good to use your best acting skills.
  • Remember to set up and demonstrate these activities carefully before letting the class go ahead.Jigsaw puzzle challenge
  • Procedure Introduce the topic Start by asking the following questions in open class: When do you think the very first heart transplant took place? (The world's first human heart transplant was performed by Christiaan Barnard on December 3, 1967 in...
  • There are no right or wrong answers so there should be no pressure on students. Students can respond as they wish, whether in English or in their mother tongue.PreparationGet ready to tell your students a short and suitable folk tale which you know...
  • PreparationPractise telling this short and simple rhythmical action tale until you know it confidently without looking at the text:Once a poor man dug the ground And what he found was nothingAgain the poor man dug the ground And what he found was a...
  • Students are motivated and have lots of fun. This activity can be used to review present simple tenses, vocabulary for sounds, language of deduction and making comparisons.PreparationOpen the YouTube video Teeth (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=...
  • This activity involves students writing a series of questions for online 'robots'.PreparationMake sure the two websites listed below are working OK before you go into the lesson. Also do some research on Alan Turing if you plan to get students to...

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