Mad Libs ESL Board Game

This fun ESL game is based on the "Mad Lib Theater" skits on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon. The activity is appropriate for all ages and requires minimal preparation. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Mad Libs ESL Game Preparation: Search on YouTube for “Mad Lib Theater” and a list of skits starring Jimmy Fallon and popular celebrities will show up. Choose one that you think your students will like. This video will be a useful introduction to the activity. Also, prepare some lined paper for students to write on. Mad Libs ESL Game Guidelines: To begin the lesson, show the entire video skit to the students. It is a great way to generate interest and it will familiarize students with the task. Next, put the…
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Weather Forecast ESL Listening Activity

Do your students know how to listen to weather forecasts in English? This Weather Forecast ESL Activity explains how to use authentic video from YouTube to help your students improve their listening skills. You can use this activity with kids and adult learners. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Weather Forecast ESL Activity Preparation: To prepare the weather listening activities, browse YouTube for some authentic videos from weather broadcasts. Pick a video that is appropriate and preview it for difficult difficult vocabulary. Make a list of the vocabulary to pre-teach your class with. Make printouts of the list if you think it will be helpful. Weather Forecast ESL Activity Guidelines: To begin the class, have a pre-discussion about today’s weather. If you want to make things more…
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Comparatives ESL Vocabulary Game

This comparatives ESL game uses player cards from EA Sports games to encourage students to practice comparatives using authentic content. The activity can be adapted to suit any age or level. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Comparatives ESL Game Preparation: To prepare for the game, go online and search for EA Sports player ratings. If you want to focus on a particular sport, add it to your search query. It may also depend on your teaching context. Focus on a sport that you know most of your students enjoy. For example, since soccer is widely popular in most countries, you could do a search for EA Sports FIFA player ratings. This will bring up several player cards on the EA Sports website. Alternatively, you could…
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Prepositions ESL Vocabulary Game

Are you looking for a new activity to practice prepositions in class? The Prepositions ESL Game is an interactive activity that students attempt to recreate a scene from a photograph with a drawing. It works well with all age groups. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Prepositions ESL Game Preparation: To prepare for the activity, make sure to have some blank paper for the students to draw on. You will also need to find some pictures of scenes online. However, as a part of the activity, you may want to have the students search for the pictures on their smartphone in class. Alternatively, you could also use still frames from videos on YouTube. Students should also have a pen or pencil to draw with. Prepositions ESL Game…
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Movie Idioms ESL Speaking Activity

This Movie Idioms ESL Activity helps students practice using different expressions and idioms from popular movies. It works best with adults, but younger learners could also enjoy it if they are above an intermediate level of proficiency. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Movie Idioms ESL Activity Preparation: There is a bit of preparation is required for this ESL speaking activity. Browse through some clips on YouTube or Netflix to find some appropriate material. Do a search for “idioms in films” or “idioms in movies” to get some content to use. Alternatively, you may already have some movies or dramas in mind that have a lot of idioms. Finding a TV sitcom or a movie that your students are familiar with would be ideal for generating the…
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Inside The Actors Studio ESL Listening Activity

The Inside the Actors Studio ESL activity works particularly well as an ice-breaker during the first day of class. Moreover, it can still be used at any time throughout the school term. Note, this listening activity uses James Lipton’s 10 questions from his show Inside the Actors Studio. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Inside the Actors Studio ESL Activity Preparation: First, to prepare for this activity, you should find one of your favorite episodes of James Lipton’s Inside the Actors Studio. Over the past several years he has interviewed some of Hollywood’s most critically acclaimed actors and actresses. What you will be using for this activity are the series of questions that he asks everyone at the end of each show. Ideally, try to find an…
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Movie Subtitles ESL Writing Activity

The Movie Subtitles ESL Activity helps develop students' writing skills by watching films. It can be used with movies and films on YouTube or other movie sites. Students should create their own dialog from what they see with the volume turned down. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly] Movie Subtitles ESL Activity Preparation: To prepare for this writing activity, research a few movie scenes on YouTube that you think your students will find entertaining. Make sure that it has plenty of dialog in it. You could use multiple scenes from one movie or a series of different scenes from different movies for more variety. Next, create a worksheet with space on it so that students can enter all the character names on it. Leave room on the sheet…
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Funny or Die ESL Speaking Activity

Here is a hilariously entertaining game that you can use in your classroom to improve your students’ speaking abilities. The Funny or Die ESL Activity uses video clips from the Funny or Die website (or other alternative video sites) which the students will form their opinions about. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Funny or Die ESL Activity Preparation: To prepare for the speaking activity, browse Funny or Die’s website to select some funny content for your class. Make sure it is appropriate material for your age group. Check out their Best GIFS of all Time sections for some of the most entertaining clips. Once you have found some video clips that you like, create a handout with a chart on it with two columns and several…
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Movie Buzz ESL Listening Activity

The Movie Buzz ESL Activity is a relatively easy activity to prepare that involves getting students to answer questions about movie scenes. It helps with their listening with dialog and can also improve their speaking and discussion skills. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Movie Buzz ESL Activity Preparation: Prepare a scene or a number of scenes from a movie or TV drama that the students would be interested in. Ideally, find something with lots of dialog so you have more material to make questions for. Movie Buzz ESL Activity Guidelines: At the beginning of class, talk a little bit about what they are about to watch. Highlight the main characters in the scene, discuss their background and intent in the scene etc. Students can discuss what they know about…
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Movie Predictions ESL Speaking Activity

Here is another fun movie predictions ESL activity that you can use with movies in which the students have to guess what happens next in a scene. It gets them thinking of some wild and entertaining possibilities that could happen in a movie plot. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly]   Movie Predictions ESL Activity Preparation: Find a movie online that your class would be interested in and that matches their skill level. Cartoons could be used for lower level students, while any type of movie genre would be appropriate for higher levels. Make sure that the length of the clip is long enough so that you can use the complete amount of class time necessary. In some cases, sitcoms and TV dramas work best because they range…
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Movie Words ESL Listening Activity

The Movie Words ESL Activity can give your students some additional practice listening for specific details using dialog from any movie scene. Student Level: Beginner, Intermediate Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Movie Words ESL Activity Preparation: Find a movie online that your students would find interesting and that matches their skill level. YouTube has a wide range of scenes to browse through to find something suitable. Once you have found a good scene or series of scenes, the next step is to create a typed version of various different words that you hear in the scene(s). Listen to the actors' lines and type out any of the vocabulary that you want your students to study in a Word doc. You may want to create a table so that it is…
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News Report ESL Writing Activity

This is an effective activity for improving students’ writing skill by summarizing information from a news broadcast. The goal of the news report ESL activity is to create a brief summary of a news story that they watch in class. Students can also improve note-taking skills. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly] News Report ESL Activity Preparation: Select a recent news report from a news website, like BBC, CNN, CBC or another reputable news television station that you prefer to use. Generally, they should be relatively short news clips anywhere from 2 to 5 minutes in length. It's a good idea to watch and listen to the clip first yourself. This way you can make a list of any vocabulary or expressions that you think the students are…
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TED Talk ESL Listening Activity

Here is a TED Talk ESL activity that will help improve students listening skills and get them talking about interesting topics in the classroom. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly] TED Talk ESL Activity Preparation: First, find a TED Talk topic related to your lesson by doing a search on TED.com. You can use their search filters on the website to find an appropriate topic and duration for the video. TED Talk ESL Activity Guidelines: After selecting a video for the class, you may want to pre-teach some vocabulary from the talk and familiarize the students with any difficult words. The TED website is especially useful since many of the videos have transcripts that you can use to select the vocabulary that needs extra explanation. In addition, you…
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Movie Dialog ESL Listening Activity

This movie dialog ESL activity can be used with any scene from a movie or any compilation of scenes that you would like to show to your class. It gets students listening for what the characters say in the movie and arrange dialog lines in a correct sequence. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly] Movie Dialog ESL Activity Preparation: First, research a movie or individual scenes from a film that you think that your students would be interested in. Many full movies can be found on YouTube or Netflix. Find one that is an appropriate length for your lesson. Also, try to choose scenes that have a lot of speaking involved. Once you have decided on the movie and selected the scenes, watch the material and type out…
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Movie Trailers ESL Speaking Activity

Every class loves movies. With the Movie Trailers ESL Activity, students watch a series of movie previews and fill out a chart with information. The class then uses the chart to discuss what they wrote with other classmates. Student Level: Intermediate, Advanced Age Group: Adults [printfriendly] Movie Trailers ESL Activity Preparation: Prepare a simple chart in a Word doc with different categories on it. The first column header should be the “Movie Name.” The other columns can be customized to anything that you would like. For instance, possible headings could be “Genre,” “Actors,” “5-Star Rating,” “Prediction,” “Movie Comparisons” or whatever else you would like the students to put on the chart. Find movie trailers online and prepare several of them that you would like to show in class. Any number…
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Song Lyrics ESL Listening Activity

Using music for listening activities in class can help students of all ages develop their listening comprehension skills. Here is a fun song lyrics ESL activity that you can use with any type of song. You can use YouTube or play the tune from your phone for the students to listen to. Student Level: Intermediate Age Group: Kids, Adults [printfriendly] Song Lyrics ESL Activity Preparation: Find a song that most of your students would be interested in. If you choose a song that only you like, then it could defeat the purpose of the exercise if nobody except you actually enjoy the music. After finding a song that everyone will like, search online for the lyrics to the song. There are a number of lyric websites where you can download…
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