The longer you have been teaching, the thicker your files are getting, but it is never too soon or too late to add to your pool of resources.
You may already be familiar with the following websites, or this might be your first introduction. Either way, each of them can be a ready resource for your ESL teaching needs and a way to freshen your teaching plans and answer your questions.
Every ESL teacher has to teach grammar, even if that is not one of your course names. This site lists the grammar rules of English alphabetically, and they are easily accessible. Not only that, they provide PDF files of lessons on these rules that you can use with your students.
What is the point of language study if it is not to speak the language in question? Give your ESL students something to talk about with this compilation of discussion questions you can use in class. Click on the topic you are planning on studying and find more than enough questions to keep your class in conversation for as long as you want to let them talk.
While you are at it, why not make up your own quizzes from your favorite videos on YouTube? With ESLvideo.com you can create your own quizzes and even have your students search by teacher to find them. If you are looking for comprehension activities that are ready to go, this site also has videos and quizzes from other teachers sorted by fluency level that your students can access anywhere and anytime.
If you teach literature in any of your ESL classes, PinkMonkey.com has seemingly limitless resources for you. Here you can find book notes and activities for you and your students for free. With over 460 books listed, you will never need another set of Cliff’s Notes again.
This site offers a bounty of information to the ESL teacher. Here you can read articles about teaching ESL as well as find lesson plans for different times of the year. Are you out of ideas for games, vocabulary or activities for your students? Get some inspiration here.
Neither you nor your students wants to carry around a ten-pound English reference dictionary, but you likely already carry something that gives you internet access. If so, bookmark dictionary.com for easy reference. This site will give you definitions of English words as well as thesaurus entries and a word of the day. There are also many other helpful resources this site offers.
Looking for something a little more intangible than simple definitions? Check out the dictionary of idioms available from usingenglish.com. There are hundreds of idioms listed on this site as well as phrasal verbs and other grammatical irregularities your students may need help with.
If you are a teacher of English, the odds are that you probably have not taken the TOEFL. Your students, on the other hand, will be working towards a proficient score on that test to prove their English skills. Familiarize yourself with the test and what your students will have to know to succeed on it with the information here on the official TOEFL site.
If you are reading this, you already know that busyteacher.org is an essential resource for the ESL teacher. Why not take some time to explore other tools that we have to offer including free worksheets, flashcards, ideas for vocabulary, and teaching ideas, just to name a few. You will never know there was so much available to you so close to home.
Have something to add?
Please share your favorite ESL websites in the comments below!
Susan likes to enjoy every day to its fullest whether she is freelance writing, teaching homeschoolers, or developing her special talent of instigation. When she is not imagining sand castles or catching others off balance, she cooks, sings, reads and takes walks in the sunshine. She earned an M.A. from the University of Delaware in Linguistics and an M.A. from Trinity School for Ministry in Youth Ministry. She currently lives in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania with her wonderful husband and her three cheepy cockatiels.
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There are certainly many excellent sites out there. One site that would be worth adding to the list is www.esltoolbox.com. It's a new site that caters for young learners (elementary aged) and provides a good collection of simple but relevant themed units.
Good ideas. http://www.english-to-go.com/english/free_lesson.cfm always has an interesting free resource and the website itself has great printable lessons around news articles that students really enjoy.
I find Busy Teacher is the best, most comprehensive & accessible resource I have come across - a real friend in need & a life saver. A close second for me is: Richard Nordquist - Grammar and Composition - About.com. Thanks a ton to both!!!
These sites have been lifesavers. However, sometimes I rely on them too much and have fallen into the 'handout trap.' They have helped me survice my first few months of topic based classes though and they have great ideas.
After taking a look at the other proposed sites, I must say that BusyTeacher.org is the site I have found to have the best resources. I believe it is THE best site, offering invaluable resources for my classes.
I did take a look at the proposed sites but have found the resources offered on the BusyTeacher site to be the BEST!
Additional great websites are www.englishforeveryone.org, www.learnersdictionary.com (very comprehensive and definitions are written in simple English), and www.englishclub.com, where you can get a slang of the day, phrasal verb of the day, idiom of the day, saying of the day, and short, relevant passages in This Week in History.
Awesome collection! Here are some more from my favourite bookmarks: http://www.bbc.co.uk/worldservice/learningenglish/quizzes/quiznet/quiznet_archiv e.shtml http://learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/en/ http://learnenglishkids.britishcouncil.org/en/ http://www.eslprintables.com/ I hope some of you will find them useful:) Sophia