New Worksheets at the ESL Review Store

TeachersPayTeachers

I’ve just uploaded a new worksheet packet to my store at Teachers Pay Teachers. The 50 worksheets in this set are designed to supplement Unit 1 of Let’s Go 5, giving your lessons that extra punch and just a bit more rigor.

There are word puzzles, scrambled sentences, questions and answer sheets (and much, much more as Laurie Taylor of the BBC would say) that are great for those times in the class or at home when you’ve finished all the workbook pages but still need more writing practice. The best part is that once you’ve got them, they’re yours forever, to use again and again with future classes.

Worksheet packet 1

There’s tons to do in this worksheet packet already but it will eventually double/triple in size.

At my store this latest product costs just $3, a steal for how much time you’ll be saving yourself. But for this week only (until 10:00pm KST on Nov. 3rd) you can download it for free (JUST CLICK HERE). The advantage of buying it, though, is that you’ll get all the future updates at no additional cost as the number of worksheets increases to an eventual 100~150 (the price grows with the size).

I’ll be uploading a new set every other week, so stay tuned for LOTS more freebies from ESL Review.

UPDATE: This freebie special is now over. Thanks to the 76 great teachers who downloaded the file and tried it out. And a  special thanks to John in China for his helpful comments.

The Harry Potter Game from Genki English

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The Harry Potter game from Genki English (GE) is one of the most exhausting games I’ve yet to play with my preschoolers, but it’s also one of the most exciting. Originally the creation of teacher Bridget McNamara, it reinforces the language taught in the classic GE theme, “What are you doing?” by Richard Graham. (You can read about Bridget’s experience playing the game on the Genki English site.)
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This theme is a great follow-up to the super energetic and warm-up par excellence, Eat! Drink! Dance! since both use the same vocabulary words, and it teaches probably one of the most useful questions a child could ever need.
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What are you doing?
by Richard Graham
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I’m eating
I’m drinking
I’m reading
I’m sleeping
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What are you doing?
What are you doing?
What are you doing?
What are you doing?
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I’m singing
I’m cooking
I’m dancing
I’m fishing

(Repeat Chorus)

What are you doing 01

These are mini cards that you can print and use in your class. They’re great for playing concentration and a host of other activities.

And with one of the most memorable melodies of all Richard Graham’s work, the song is really, really sticky – so much so that the kids won’t be able to stop asking you or their classmate what they’re doing.
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But back to the game….
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The way I play, I pretend to be the Dark Lord Voldemort while all the children are little witches and wizards whom I want to entrance with my evil magic. I may even have a magic wand (actually a plastic xylophone mallet) just to look cool. I then chase the children around the class, trying to lightly tap them on the shoulder with my wand or hand. When I do, I say the magical spell “I’m eating” in a moderately spooky voice, and trap the child where they stand.
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what are you doing 03The child is now doomed to continuously say “I’m eating” again and again while also having to pretend to eat something. As the game continues, more and more children become trapped and helpless against my evil magic. Ha ha ha!
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what are you doing 04
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But wait! That is not all. The other students can save their trapped comrades by rushing up to them and saying the counter spell, “What are you doing?” thus releasing the child from the spell.
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What are you doing 05
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There is no real ending to the game unless Voldemort catches everyone so after five minutes I call time, take a rest for a bit and then start again with a different “spell” like “I’m fishing.”
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With larger classes of older children I’d probably appoint a third of the class to be Voldemorts like Bridget suggests but with the preschoolers I was teaching I like to keep a little more control of things-even if that means I feel like collapsing by the end of the hour.
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Disclaimer: In teaching this song and game I’ve made a disturbing discovery – I’m getting really old, really fast. Now I was never the biggest fan of the series, but when I first got into teaching, kids young and old all seemed to know who Harry Potter was. Five year olds would dress up as him for Halloween parties and recite spells from the films. The whole reason I bothered to watch the movies and even read the first book was just to keep up.
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But the kids I teach nowadays are all “Harry-who?” and “Volde-what?”. Not even classic photos of the characters enticed a smidgen of recognition. Even the older kids just dismiss it all as “old stuff.”
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That said your kids WILL get into the game and have a real blast, just like mine did. They didn’t give a hoot who Harry Potter was so long as they got to run wild.

Story Picture Writing Prompts by Super Teacher Worksheets

스크린샷 2013-07-21 오전 11.01.51Some children can look at a typical writing topic like, “Imagine you found a dinosaur in your backyard, what would you do?” and have no trouble coming up with things to write. Others sometimes need more visual stimulation to get the old gears turning. That’s why the story pictures at Super Teacher Worksheets (STW) are just perfect. The idea is simple. Students write a story to accompany the cartoon depicted on each worksheet in the writing space provided below. And with over seventy topics to choose from (and counting), there is bound to be something that will appeal to any child.
스크린샷 2014-10-16 오후 10.46.07Now I have approached assigning these worksheets in a few different ways. In some classes I assign the same one to everyone, being sure to take ten minutes to do some group brainstorming. In other classes I’ve chosen a set of 12 (the maximum size of my EFL classes) and given a different one to each child. After the writing has been done the more confident students sometimes read their work aloud, followed up by a little group discussion. The advantage of everyone doing a different story is there is less competition (or self-consciousness) to come up with THE funniest story. That said, I’ve gotten some amazing results with classes that were all assigned the same topic, so you’ll just have to figure out what works for you.
(You can also try these FREE picture writing prompts courtesy of Lanternfish.)

Great Videos for Teaching Beginner Phonics by Maple Leaf Hashima

Last week I wrote about the excellent CVC videos by Maple Leaf Hashima, one of my favorite YouTube channels for EFL. I neglected to mention their first rate alphabet vocabulary series which I have been using to supplement my lessons when I teach beginner phonics. Each of the 26 videos teaches the sound of a letter in the alphabet and several vocabulary words that start with that letter, repeating them a bit faster for emphasis. They’re great practice for those times when the kids are sick of listening to the teacher but love engaging with a non corporeal voice on screen.

There are lots of videos that do the same thing, but the ones made by Maple Leaf Hashima are by far the best. Check out these ones below or take a look at the entire playlist.

 

Great Videos for Teaching CVC Words

I’m fond of using the vast array of educational videos on YouTube in the final ten minutes of my beginner classes, when attention spans are at their lowest. There’s a lot you can pack in there if you know which videos to put in your playlist. One amazing channel you may want to consider looking up is Maple Lead Hashima, which has an excellent selection of videos for young learners that include lists of vocabulary words, simple skits, and catchy songs.

The following six videos have been very effective for me in pre-teaching CVC (consonant vowel consonant) vocabulary words like cat, bed, sit, box, and sun. Before teaching a short vowel sound, I’ll often show the video two or three times in the classes leading up to the actual lesson. By the time the students are “learning” it blackboard style for the first time, they already know it pretty well, making the job of the teacher much, much easier. Trust me, they work.