2,124 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 2,124 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 2,124 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
4.7 out of 5, rated by 26 teachers
Sort by: Most Recent | Most Viewed | Rating
Top 10 Tongue Twisters: True Teacher's Treasure?

Top 10 Tongue Twisters: True Teacher's Treasure?

•, ESL Essentials
Tongue twisters in the ESL classroom – yes or no? Although most don't make any sense at all, they can certainly help your students improve their pronunciation skills.
Views 1,214,309
10 February Themed Language Building Activities

10 February Themed Language Building Activities

•ESL Essentials
When the cold winds are still blowing, warm up your class with some of these fun, language building, February themed activities! Try These 10 February Themed Language Building Activities ...
Views 16,362 All
Beyond Martin Luther King Day: Teaching Argument Through the Writings of Martin Luther King

Beyond Martin Luther King Day: Teaching Argument Through the Writings of Martin Luther King

•ESL Essentials
For many instructors, studying the writings of Martin Luther King is confined to the month of January, perhaps to the week leading up to his birthday. In a way, this is good—at least Martin ...
Views 25,456 All
WIDA and ACCESS Testing: What You Need to Know

WIDA and ACCESS Testing: What You Need to Know

Many teachers, especially those new to WIDA and/or ESL teaching, are often overwhelmed and intimidated by the WIDA standards and ACCESS testing. In this article, we attempt to break down the mai ...
Views 6,584 BegElemPre-IntIntAdv
How To Be A Better Teacher: The Secret Recipe That Every Pro Knows

How To Be A Better Teacher: The Secret Recipe That Every Pro Knows

•ESL Essentials
Qualities of a good teacher - what are they? This article attempts to look into the practical side of being a good teacher by reviewing the various aspects of a 'successful teacher' strategy that ...
Views 41,959 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 323,134 subscribers every Wednesday.
See last week's issue.

What do You do for Fun? Celebrating National Hobby Month (January) in Your ESL Classroom

What do You do for Fun? Celebrating National Hobby Month (January) in Your ESL Classroom

•ESL Essentials
 Are you a coin collector? Are you fascinated with stamps? Do you like video games or cooking or tennis? We all have something we like to do with our free time, our hobbies. January is nati ...
Views 22,276 All
7 Ready to Use ESL Activities for Martin Luther King Day

7 Ready to Use ESL Activities for Martin Luther King Day

•ESL Essentials
This is a guest article by Sarah Fudin. Sarah Fudin currently works in community relations for the University of Southern California's Master of Arts in Teaching program, which recently launched ...
Views 85,447 All
10 January Themed Language Building Activities

10 January Themed Language Building Activities

•ESL Essentials
With a new year comes the opportunity to switch things up in your ESL classroom. When it’s time to change the calendars in your classroom, try one of the following January themed activitie ...
Views 19,866 All
Jazzy January Lesson Ideas For Creative ESL Teachers

Jazzy January Lesson Ideas For Creative ESL Teachers

•ESL Essentials
January is generally kind of a low point in the year for students because it follows a long school holiday. It is important to get students involved in fun activities and really engage them in le ...
Views 32,887 All
How to Teach a Christmas Lesson Adult Learners Will Never Forget

How to Teach a Christmas Lesson Adult Learners Will Never Forget

•ESL Essentials
Christmas is a holiday that adults enjoy as much as children. The preparations, the shopping for gifts, the cooking, and the singing is not hard for a grown-up to get into the spirit of Christma ...
Views 279,661 All
A Touch of December Magic: Ready To Use Holiday Crafts for the ESL Classroom [Part One]

A Touch of December Magic: Ready To Use Holiday Crafts for the ESL Classroom [Part One]

•ESL Essentials
December is in full force and your students are starting to get lost among dreams of sugarplums dancing in their heads. It is also a time when teachers may need to think about creative craft pr ...
Views 22,028 All
10 December Themed Language Learning Activities

10 December Themed Language Learning Activities

•ESL Essentials
The year is nearing its close, but it’s not over yet. December is full of fun, and it’s the last chance to end the year strong in your ESL class. These language building activities d ...
Views 21,734 All
10 Ways to Give Thanks This November

10 Ways to Give Thanks This November

•ESL Essentials
When the crisp fall mornings make us think of turkey and mashed potatoes, our thoughts also turn to giving thanks. Being thankful for what we have is a healthy and beneficial attitude, so why is ...
Views 16,800 All
Creative November Lesson Ideas

Creative November Lesson Ideas

•ESL Essentials
It’s always nice to theme a class. This is especially true if you are teaching a particular type of English, such as business English. By working on a specific theme, the students can get ...
Views 20,112 All
10 Fun Halloween Games for English Practice

10 Fun Halloween Games for English Practice

•ESL Essentials
If your classes are anything like mine have been, Halloween is an unfamiliar yet intriguing holiday. Most ESL students know very little about the spooky holiday at the end of October, and even ...
Views 238,100 All
How to Teach Comparatives and Superlatives

How to Teach Comparatives and Superlatives

•ESL Essentials
“Comparisons are odious” says the old proverb, but in an ESL class they are also very necessary. And as there is not set rule for all adjectives, we must make sure students learn ever ...
Views 286,872 All
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 ...
Views 757,331 All
Teaching English Tenses through Teaching the Way of Thinking

Teaching English Tenses through Teaching the Way of Thinking

•ESL Essentials
This article deals with teaching grammar, the tense forms in particular, from the point of view of of their contrast in meaning with the native tense forms. It concentrates on the differences of ...
Views 42,500 Exam
How to Teach the Verb

How to Teach the Verb "To Be" to Beginners

•ESL Essentials
The verb “to be” is the first verb students learn in their English studies. It is used extensively in the English language and will allow students to create simple sentences with the ...
Views 754,995 All
Top 10 Fun Alphabet Games for Your Students

Top 10 Fun Alphabet Games for Your Students

•ESL Essentials
Learning a second language is challenging. You need to learn new sound patterns, new rules of grammar, and sometimes you even have to learn a new alphabet to boot. Of all of my ESL students over ...
Views 254,184 All
Fabulous Ideas for the First Day of Class

Fabulous Ideas for the First Day of Class

•ESL Essentials
On the first day of class, the halls buzz with excitement. Teachers get ready to greet their students, anxious to get started, and our young, or not-so-young, learners are nervous, wondering wha ...
Views 624,246 All
Using Pictorial Representations To Teach Rules Of Grammar, Punctuation, and Word Usage

Using Pictorial Representations To Teach Rules Of Grammar, Punctuation, and Word Usage

•ESL Essentials
Amused by the misplaced modifiers in your students’ writing? Frustrated that your students omit commas in direct address? Tired of explaining the difference between your and you’re to ...
Views 51,543 All
Making Phonics Fun

Making Phonics Fun

•ESL Essentials
In many schools, phonics instruction is limited to flash cards and circling pictures on worksheets. While this type of phonics instruction can be beneficial to students, it can also be boring. In ...
Views 7,076 BegElemPre-Int
Back to School Dilemma: Technological Gadgets in the ESL Classroom

Back to School Dilemma: Technological Gadgets in the ESL Classroom

•ESL Essentials
If you teach a student over 10, chances are they have a cell phone. At the very least. Some may show up to class with an assortment of gadgets, including iPods, PSPs, or iPhones just to name a fe ...
Views 22,747 All
Tools for the Most Efficient Use of Your Online EFL Classroom

Tools for the Most Efficient Use of Your Online EFL Classroom

•ESL Essentials
Online EFL teachers love their jobs and the flexibility it allows them. For a short period of time, they get to talk to people from all around the world. Yet, the limited timeframe and distan ...
Views 6,996 All

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

Submit a Worksheet