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In this section, you will find a number of articles, which have been written to help you develop your skills and knowledge as a teacher in the professional practice 'Understanding learners'. From primary-aged students to adult learners of English, the articles you will find here are practical, insightful and full of ideas to support your teaching and planning for all kinds of classrooms.It also involves dividing lessons into coherent stages, planning board work, selecting and describing interaction patterns for different activities during the lesson, and planning for differentiated learning. 

Planning lessons and courses includes anticipating problems that may arise during the lesson, and planning how to respond to these, describing how learners’ understanding will be checked or assessed and describing when and how feedback will be provided. It is important to be able to describe how a lesson is linked to those before and after it, plan a broad outline for a sequence of lessons, including the recycling of learning content and reflect on the approach and effectiveness of lesson planning, incorporating learner feedback and other evidence.

Find useful articles

13 Apr 2021

David Heathfield looks at how storytelling can be used effectively in online English language classes and gives practical advice with...

08 Apr 2021

David Heathfield looks at the benefits of using storytelling in face-to-face English language classes and gives practical advice with...

10 Mar 2014

Successful CLIL depends on a variety of factors. This paper discusses four factors relevant to successful implementation of CLIL....

11 Dec 2012

Being able to plan well is one of the key skills that a teacher needs to have.  It involves being able to imagine what is going to...

09 Nov 2012

Using stories and poems for language learning provides an opportunity to introduce students to a whole culture. 

03 Nov 2011

When you are faced with planning whole lessons on your own for the first time it can seem like a daunting task.

19 Oct 2011

In this article, Luke Meddings reflects on the constraints coursebooks can put on the learning experience in the classroom, and offers...

14 Sep 2011

Before going into your first class with a new group you may feel a little nervous. It can be quite daunting to stand up in front of...

05 Jul 2011

A feature that is common both to language teaching and to traditional folk and fairy tales is the repetition of phrases or ‘language...

27 Apr 2011

Writing, unlike speaking, is not an ability we acquire naturally, even in our first language - it has to be taught. Unless L2 learners...

05 Jan 2011

When you’re planning your lessons how much time do you spend thinking about how you’re going to group students for the activities in...

25 Aug 2010

People spend a huge chunk of their everyday conversation time talking about themselves and the people they know, so the most natural...

Pre-listening activities - listening article
18 Aug 2010

Listening skills are hard to develop. Students can do a variety of work before listening to help them understand.

08 Apr 2010

For many people, standing up in public and doing a speech is one of their greatest fears. For many language students in particular, this...

31 Mar 2010

Making grammar more interesting for students is one of the great challenges any EFL teacher faces.

03 Mar 2010

There’s nothing like a group project to get students talking.

A framework for planning a listening skills lesson - listening article
10 Feb 2010

By developing their ability to listen well we develop our students' ability to become more independent learners, as by hearing...

27 Jan 2010

Why should I write a plan? The best option is always to be prepared. Once you have prepared your lesson you will feel much more...

13 Jan 2010

Syllabus writers - and teachers in general - commonly assume a ‘scaffolding approach’ to course design.

22 Sep 2009

Being faced with a class which won't speak can be very disappointing after all your planning. When there are rows of blank faces or...

Designing Business English programmes 3 - methodology article
01 Jul 2009

This is the final article in a three part series. In the first part we looked at needs analysis and how to define goals and objectives....

Designing Business English programmes 2 - methodology article
03 Jun 2009

This is the second article in a three part series. In the first part we looked at needs analysis and how to define goals and objectives...

Designing Business English programmes 1 - methodology article
13 May 2009

This is the first of three articles on designing Business English programmes to suit students' needs.

Controversies in Business English - speaking article - guest writers
23 Apr 2009

I began teaching business English in 1980 and have observed over the years huge differences in the way we teach.

09 Dec 2008

There are many ways of revising and consolidating grammar, but I've found it's often useful to give students short passages containing...

Making time for tasks and still covering the syllabus - methodology article - guest writers
09 Jul 2008

This is the last in a series of four articles which will explore how to integrate a task-based approach into a typical textbook to...

Planning a grammar lesson
09 Dec 2005

Without grammar, words hang together without any real meaning or sense. In order to be able to speak a language to some degree of...

Student presentations - speaking article
29 Sep 2005

In this article I would like to give you a few tips and some advice on what I've learned from helping students prepare and deliver...

Syllabus writing - methodology article
21 Sep 2005

Writing or developing an English language syllabus is a difficult task. Don't let anyone tell you otherwise.

21 Mar 2005

Skills circuits are a fun way to review language.