As an ESL teacher we spend a LOT of time scouring the web for resources. As many of you know, finding good (AND FREE) materials online is like finding a polar bear in a snow storm, ridiculously time consuming and nearly impossible. Personally I’ve wasted countless hours looking for worksheets, activities etc. only to come out empty handed. Luckily, over my 5 years as a teacher, I’ve found a number of tried and true sites that I now swear by and constantly recommend. Before you embark on your own wild goose chase, check these ESL websites out first!
- I stumbled upon this ultimate timesaver in the midst of a wild google ‘goose chase’ looking for worksheets to add to a lesson. I didn’t want to make my own because I was convinced searching would be much faster. As it went, I got sucked into the black hole that is Google and I found a TON of wonderful resources for other classes but nothing for my lesson the next day. In a moment of clarity, or madness, I decided to change my search keywords and Voilà! I found this wonderful tool which will make customized A4 sized worksheets with whatever vocabulary you pop into their generator. They have a variety of styles and activities that you can fit to whatever lesson you’re teaching.
- Almost every student out there wants classes based only around speaking. Therefore, it’s even more important to find ways to hide other skills in your ‘speaking’ based classes. TEFL Tunes has a wide variety of fun songs you can use in your classes which will both entertain and educate your students. You can search through the songs by level, theme, task or artist to find the perfect tune for your class.
- When you feel like you’ve hit rock bottom in your quest of searching for materials, there’s ALWAYS Pinterest. While many of you may think that this site is just for wedding crazy brides to be or DYI arts and crafts fanatics, you’ll be pleasantly surprised to know it’s actually a treasure trove for teachers of all types as well! From craft ideas & classroom activities to free worksheets, they have it all. While this site is FILLED with great ideas, it is NOT an option for under the wire planning. Be sure to give yourself ample time as many of the activities usually involve some sort of prep.
- The day I accidentally stumbled upon BogglesWorldESL, I had been searching for materials for one of my kids’ classes for over an hour. I wanted to find activities that were both educational and engaging for his level and interests. I was about to give up when I found this wonderful collection of games and activities for all levels. The best part is that they have adult activities as well. My student loved the class and there were enough materials on the site to supplement my lessons for M O N T H S!!!
- Young learners are always a ton of fun yet sometimes a bit of a challenge to plan for. Early on in my career, a fellow teacher turned me on to Mes-English and I quickly learned about its many many benefits. This wonderful site has a plethora of FREE printable resources for all levels and it covers a multitude of topics. They’ve got flashcards, worksheets, songs, gameboards etc. My young learners have always loved the classes where I used materials from this site.
Do you know of any other fabulous ESL websites? Fess up! Leave a comment in our Facebook post and share your wealth of knowledge with our ESL teacher community.