2,023 FREE ESL Essentials - What Every English Teacher Needs To Know!
BusyTeacher Home » ESL Essentials

FREE ESL Essentials

ESL Essentials – Important Teaching Tips

In this section there are 2,023 articles that cover essential ESL topics such as how to teach grammar, use realia, and teach young learners. There are also a lot of lesson ideas and fun activities included in the articles. This ESL article, for example, is about teaching grammar and describes five great activities. It has been given five stars by other busy teachers so it obviously has useful content. Check it out for yourself or take a look at other articles that relate better to your questions or teaching situation.

There are a lot of dos and don’ts and tips and tricks that many teachers learn through teaching.

Our ESL Essentials section will help you master the basics of teaching English and will help you start teaching like a 'pro'. Every ESL Essentials article provides clear, to-the-point instructions that can be used with the students right away.
At the moment we have 2,023 ESL Essentials.
Sometimes that is the best way to learn but the experiences of others can also help you develop your teaching skills without having to make the same mistakes. If you have a great story or activity, feel free to submit your own article so that you can share your knowledge with others. We would love to hear from you!

Dramatically improve the way you teach:

Make A Word Search:

Create awesome-looking custom word searches in seconds!

Make A Word Scramble:

Instantly create custom word/sentence scrambles for your class!

Make A Double Puzzle:

Generate double puzzles your students will love - hours of fun!

ESL Articles
Rate this Category
4.6 out of 5, rated by 24 teachers
Sort by: Most Recent | Most Viewed | Rating
Using YouTube to Teach ESL: 6 Instructor-Proven Strategies

Using YouTube to Teach ESL: 6 Instructor-Proven Strategies

•ESL Essentials
Whether you consider your classroom high-tech or not, odds are you have at least a little modern technology in your midst. One of the easiest and most flexible technology tools for ESL teachers a ...
5 Views 6,854 All
Bringing Technology to Life for Your ESL Students in Four Simple Steps

Bringing Technology to Life for Your ESL Students in Four Simple Steps

•ESL Essentials
Do you remember the excitement that filled the classroom when the teacher dragged out that great little gadget that would silence the teacher like nothing else? Film strip day! Okay, I may be dat ...
3 Views 2,890 All
Breaks and Holidays: Helping ESL Students Maintain Strong Language Skills Year-Round

Breaks and Holidays: Helping ESL Students Maintain Strong Language Skills Year-Round

•ESL Essentials
Whether it is the end of the school year with summer knocking on the door or a visit back to their home country for several weeks, sometimes we have to let our students go. It’s hard. We po ...
3 Views 2,385 All
Six Teacher-Tested Strategies for Keeping Student Stress Out of the Classroom

Six Teacher-Tested Strategies for Keeping Student Stress Out of the Classroom

•ESL Essentials
Imagine this: you step off of an airplane, your bag packed as tightly as it can be. You carry gifts from home, a bilingual dictionary, some clothes (and you can tell by looking around you will be ...
2 Views 2,804 All
When it’s Time to Leave the Nest: 8 Tips for Helping ESL Students Transition into Mainstream Classes

When it’s Time to Leave the Nest: 8 Tips for Helping ESL Students Transition into Mainstream Classes

•ESL Essentials
Sometimes being an ESL teacher is kind of like being a parent. We take pride in our students’ accomplishments. We feel a vicarious thrill when we see them learning and becoming more profici ...
2 Views 2,039 All
Put BusyTeacher in your inbox

Sign up for the BusyTeacher Weekly and be the first to get direct links to our latest teaching articles, worksheets and lesson plans. Goes out to 326,778 subscribers every Tuesday.
See last week's issue.

Top 10 Ways to Teach Vowel Pronunciation in English

Top 10 Ways to Teach Vowel Pronunciation in English

•ESL Essentials
Every ESL student should have a pronunciation element to his language studies. Sometimes, though, a student may need more than one strategy for tackling English pronunciation. By making sure you ...
37 Views 229,066 All
How to Teach the Present Continuous Tense

How to Teach the Present Continuous Tense

•ESL Essentials
When teaching the present continuous tense, one thing usually comes to mind. This tense is taught for the first time to students who are complete beginners, and who have had exposure to a small qu ...
61 Views 232,041 All
How To Teach Directions

How To Teach Directions

•ESL Essentials
Directions can be challenging to teach however its practical uses are readily understood by students and there are many fun activities you can incorporate into your lessons to make them more enjoy ...
61 Views 247,757 All
How to Teach Modal Verbs: 4 Simple Steps

How to Teach Modal Verbs: 4 Simple Steps

•ESL Essentials
English language learners are often confused by modal verbs because they are used differently than other verbs and in a wide variety of situations such as asking for permission and giving advice. ...
49 Views 262,593 All
4 Excellent Activities for Using Comparatives and Superlatives: The Best and the Brightest

4 Excellent Activities for Using Comparatives and Superlatives: The Best and the Brightest

•ESL Essentials
Bigger, brighter, better, best…comparative and superlative adjectives are all around us in English. We use these adjectives to compare items, express preferences and give value judgments. ...
50 Views 265,975
How to Teach Conversational English: 9 Best Practices

How to Teach Conversational English: 9 Best Practices

•ESL Essentials
When other teachers, even other ESL teachers, hear I’m teaching an ESL conversation class, they often say it sounds “relaxing,” or “fun” or “easy.” Most t ...
107 Views 302,115 All
In This Together: 6 Secrets for Building a Rapport with Your ESL Class

In This Together: 6 Secrets for Building a Rapport with Your ESL Class

•ESL Essentials
Standing in front of a group of complete strangers, and asking them to trust and rely on you, is a challenging situation for any teacher. But this experience greets teaching professional as they ...
1 Views 4,196 All
Putting the You in Unique: How to Give Your Teaching a Boost for the Better by Being You in the Classroom

Putting the You in Unique: How to Give Your Teaching a Boost for the Better by Being You in the Classroom

•ESL Essentials
No doubt if you are reading this, you are already a great teacher. You may not have all of the information you need for the classroom, but your attitude is where it should be. The best teachers a ...
2 Views 4,016 All
Black or White? 7 Alternatives to Binary Thinking for Your ESL Students

Black or White? 7 Alternatives to Binary Thinking for Your ESL Students

•ESL Essentials
Wherever they are from, and for whatever reason they sign up, ESL students arrive in their classrooms with their culture and philosophies in their rucksacks. Even if they’re studying abroad ...
3 Views 3,193 All
The Roundtable Discussion: What, When, and Why

The Roundtable Discussion: What, When, and Why

•ESL Essentials
Class discussions can pose a number of problems for teachers. Often they waver between either too structured (a series of discussion points) or a free-for-all (questions thrown out to the class a ...
2 Views 3,683 All
Everyone Can Participate: How to Involve More Students in Discussion to Promote Higher-Level Thinking in the ESL Classroom

Everyone Can Participate: How to Involve More Students in Discussion to Promote Higher-Level Thinking in the ESL Classroom

•ESL Essentials
Many teachers like to teach ESL classes. The students are polite and engaged and usually come from cultures where teachers and the education process is respected. Often measurable progress can be ...
2 Views 4,526 All
How to Teach the Present Simple Tense

How to Teach the Present Simple Tense

•ESL Essentials
When teaching the Present Simple the ultimate goal is to make sure your students understand that it’s used to describe routines, habits, daily activities, and general truths. Also important ...
96 Views 326,982 All
Top 10 Board Games for Your ESL Classroom

Top 10 Board Games for Your ESL Classroom

•ESL Essentials
Board games can be a useful and ready asset for the ESL classroom. Most require little to no preparation, and with a little patience, your English learners add a new resource to their language stu ...
30 Views 277,719 All
33 Controversial Discussion Topics: And How To Teach Them

33 Controversial Discussion Topics: And How To Teach Them

•ESL Essentials
Controversial topics make many teachers want to run away from the curriculum screaming, but for ESL teachers they offer an unequalled opportunity to foster discussion in the classroom. Though you ...
99 Views 894,244 All
Mr. Know-It-All: Ten Ways to Avoid Talking Down to Your ESL Students

Mr. Know-It-All: Ten Ways to Avoid Talking Down to Your ESL Students

•ESL Essentials
I have a recommendation for the next time you finish a tough week of teaching and could do with a morale boost. Open a bottle of something (if you like) and find old lesson plans and, even better ...
7 Views 22,059 All
Motivating from the Inside: 3 Techniques for Investing Students in Their Own Learning

Motivating from the Inside: 3 Techniques for Investing Students in Their Own Learning

•ESL Essentials
You’ve heard the proverb you get more bees with honey than vinegar, haven’t you? It’s a simple way of pointing out there are both positive and negative ways to motivate someone. ...
3 Views 6,443 All
Getting Ready to Teach Online: What You Need to Know before You Hit Send

Getting Ready to Teach Online: What You Need to Know before You Hit Send

•ESL Essentials
If you have done any amount of research into today’s ESL job market, no doubt you have seen positions advertised all over the world. You can travel into the mysterious lands of the east, th ...
2 Views 4,356 All
My Country Right or Wrong: Teaching ESL Students about Nationalism

My Country Right or Wrong: Teaching ESL Students about Nationalism

•ESL Essentials
If you keep an eye on the news, the recent rise in nationalistic sentiment in the US, Europe and elsewhere can’t have escaped your notice. Far-right parties have come to power, or grown in ...
2 Views 3,905 All
Firm but Fair: Balancing Praise and Discipline in the ESL Classroom

Firm but Fair: Balancing Praise and Discipline in the ESL Classroom

•ESL Essentials
Developing a reasonable attitude to classroom discipline is a challenge. No one likes a tyrannical teacher, but being a passive, permissive doormat isn’t very effective. This balance is esp ...
5 Views 6,595 All
End of Session: Fast and Effective In-Class Writing Activities for Higher-Level Thinking

End of Session: Fast and Effective In-Class Writing Activities for Higher-Level Thinking

•ESL Essentials
It’s the end of an English class at the high school or college level. Students have spent the session discussing some issue like gun control, the ethics of abortion, the limits of free spee ...
6 Views 9,860 All

Got a great worksheet on ESL Essentials? Tell us about it and become a BusyTeacher contributor!

Submit a Worksheet