If your students are looking to take control of their language learning or you’re looking for ways to encourage them to use English daily, then this article is just for you! Journaling is the perfect tool to give your students autonomy, increase their vocabulary skills, track their progress over time, and make sure your students are using language that is applicable to them specifically.
As a book lover and an ESL teacher, I’m always interested in finding ways to share my favorite stories with my students, while still helping them grow in their language learning journey. Stories and books offer so many different ways to prompt your students to think and write creatively, which makes them a great resource for language learning in a classroom.
There are so many cool writing prompts on the internet, and specifically on Pinterest! I’ve definitely seen a few that I thought could make excellent novels and short stories, but the question I always come back to is how we can use those prompts as ESL teachers.
There are many different reasons for teaching writing in an ESL class. If you’re teaching an academic class, you’ll probably focus on research and essay-writing. If you’re teaching a business English class, you’ll probably focus on writing reports, emails, and resumes. And if you’re teaching a survival English class, you’ll want to focus on filling out forms, writing comments or emails, and maybe even writing a grocery list.
However, I think it’s safe to say, every teacher wants their writing activities to be applicable and practical. Sometimes a practical writing task will be a research project, but it could also be a simple storytelling exercise. A practical writing task will look different for every classroom.
I am always looking for ways to bring creativity into the classroom. I’ve said this before and I’ll say it again: language is nothing without the transference of ideas. The entire purpose of language is to communicate.
It’s important for students to know how to speak and write and read and listen, but getting students to communicate is the most important part of ESL, in my opinion. All of the language skills above serve the purpose of pushing individuals towards communication.
If I asked a group of teachers to rank the four skills of language (speaking, listening, reading, and writing) on a scale of most to least important, there would be as many different answers as there were teachers. A typical survival English class will focus on speaking and listening, while a college English course may focus on reading and writing.
Different learner and teacher populations have different motives, goals, and focuses. If your student population doesn’t see writing as an important skill, you may be wondering if, why, and how you should focus on it in class.
Chances are you’ve thought about using pictures as a prompt in the language classroom. They’re great for discussion, to guide listening, to aid reading, and to jump start writing! There are so many things to do with a well-chosen picture.Read More
In some ways, writing can be one of the most difficult aspects of language learning. Not only do learners have to worry about using the correct words, sentence structure, and grammar, but the words they write can be looked back on multiple times. Speech, on the other hand, is spoken, heard, and forgotten in a moment’s notice.Read More