So you’ve been hired to teach ESL – congratulations on making it this far! But the question now remains: How? What? And where? If you were to look online for ESL resources, you’ll be surprised and relieved (perhaps also overwhelmed?) at what you’ll see before you.
There are many resources available to you aside from your colleagues (an obvious choice, and an invaluable one at that). Scouring the Internet can prove daunting and endless. However, here are a few tried and tested sites that will take you to your class with confidence.
Some good finds:
ESL Gold is a very popular and widely used site for ESL teaching material. The site is categorized nicely for you to easily select what area, skill, and level(s) you’d like to focus on, which is especially helpful when you’re starting out and are unsure of where to begin. I’ve personally used it to get ideas, and it has always provided excellent resources.
Easy to navigate, Boggles World ESL is a fun site to explore and see the things they have to offer teachers. I find that they are also more current when it comes to the seasons and upcoming holidays (like Thanksgiving or Halloween for October, as an example) and so on. From flash cards to lesson plans, this website will hopefully give you the helping hand you‘ll need to teach your class.
Busy Teacher provides worksheets on a variety of topics to suit your needs. Although I don’t enjoy browsing through this site because of all the ads it uses to purchase the books offered on their site, I can definitely appreciate the ability to download the worksheets to use for class. Just be sure to look for the download button, which is usually located on the right hand side, somewhere in the mid-top half of the page. The downloads are nice because they are also in colour (I’m not a fan of the black and white sheets myself!). I should note that these worksheets are created by fellow teachers, and they are free to download as you please.
A favourite amongst the new as well as the more seasoned, Dave’s ESL Café is your one stop shop (sort-to-speak) to everything ESL. Whether it’s a job you’re seeking to find, a lesson plan, worksheets, whatever, this site is more than likely going to have what you’re looking for. This site is, however, not pleasant to work with in terms of navigation. So, to make your life a tad easier (you’re welcome!): click on Stuff for Teachers found at the top left-ish corner of the page, then click on Idea Cookbook. From there you can choose what you want to help get your prep going.
Last on my list is ESL Galaxy. Although its teaching materials are geared towards children of ESL, it is nevertheless an invaluable resource (in my humble opinion) when it comes to adult students – especially those at the lower levels of learning. Here you’ll find crossword puzzles, phonics worksheets (love these), and other things you may find helpful. Remember, even if you don’t find exactly what you’re looking for, it’s always nice to get ideas and try to come up with your very own material – as I have mostly done.
I hope these sites give you the tools needed to lead an excellent class with perfect lesson plans in minimal time. Happy reading! 🙂
For those of you who’ve been in the game for quite some time, it would be great to hear from you on where you get your materials etc., to prepare for your class.