Getting Back into Teaching English to Kids After a Break

For many teachers of English to children (ESL, EFL), the summer is a break from teaching.  Of course many teachers teach all year long, but for those of us who do have a break starting again can be a jolt to the system. A fun jolt, like a strong espresso in the morning, but it still takes some adjusting. Here are my top tips for getting things going in a great way!

5 Tips for Starting Teaching after a Break

  1. Go slow! If you have had a break, chances are your students have too. Do not rush the first lesson. Take things slowly, and have a fun review day with songs and games.
  2. Don’t be too hard on yourself. Even I forget the words to my own songs sometimes after a long break. Give yourself sometime to readjust to teaching. Laugh along with the students if any mistakes are made.
  3. Have Fun! Let’s not forget that teaching is fun! Take the first few lessons to establish the fun you can have in a classroom.
  4. Remember why you teach. We all teach for different reasons, but I believe that at the foundation of teaching is the want to help others. We want to help our students learn English. That idea is a great motivator!
  5. Try new things. It is great to try a few new things when classes start again. It could be a new song, a new game, or a new book. Do something fresh and exciting for you and your students.

Oh, and if you need some lesson plan ideas to get you started, check out the Dream English Teaching Tips Podcast here.

These are a few of my ideas, and I hope they help you get off to a great start! Or, if you did not have a break, give you some new ideas to keep things fresh. Have a great one!

Getting Ready for The New Year – Happy New Year Chant

It’s been an amazing year at Dream English, thanks to your support from around the world. I got to visit students in Thailand, and had a wonderful time making songs and videos for teachers and students around the world!

Start off your New Year with the Happy New Year Chant! A great chant to clap and dance your way into the New Year! Check it out here! Happy Teaching!

New Podcast! Young Learners English Lesson – A Lesson Plan for ESL, EFL Students

In today’s episode I talk you through a simple lesson plan that I used with my preschool English language students. It was a thrity minute class, with about 20 students. We had a lot of fun. You can expand on these ideas if you have a longer class. Here is the lesson plan in brief:

1. Warm Ups- clap your hands, etc. 2. Weather Song 3. Count from 1 to 10,000 4. Let’s Count 1 to 10 Song. 5. I Like Apples Book 6. I Like Apples Song 7. Pick Up Color Apples Game 7. ABC Letters and Vocabulary Practice 8. ABC Song 9. Goodbye Song. You can find all of these songs for free download at DreamEnglish.com (Free Download Page) the Book is a free printable download from KidsEnglishBooks.com Happy Teaching!

What Do You Want To Eat? Song for Children’s English Classes, ESL, EFL

” I want a banana! ” asking for things in English is so important. If you listen to young native speakers, they are often asking for things. In this fun video we are learning the basics of how to ask for something in English. Watch, and give it a try in your classes!

Target Phrases: What do you want to eat? I want a banana.
Target vocabulary: sandwich, salad, hot dog, hamburger, banana, taco, broccoli cake, onion ice cream

Give the song a try in your classes, and then practice with different food vocabulary. You can even make a shopping game. Happy teaching!

 

Back to Basics English for Young Learners #1: Numbers

With so many songs, videos, flashcards, games, where does one begin teaching English to young learners? It can be overwhelming! My answer: get back to basics. In this post, and more going forward, I will cover some basic and simple ideas for teaching English. Remember, teaching English is easy! Present the material in a fun and interesting way, and children will do the rest with their magnificent minds. More below the video:


Basic # 1: Teaching Numbers 

We might think that most young learners already know numbers. I meet a lot of new students who have a basic idea of how to say numbers in English, but maybe have never done so in front of people. Numbers are a fun and simple way to boost young learners confidence in the English classroom.

Practice, practice, practice

Numbers are not only great on their own, but they contain many sounds of the English language. I start many classes by simply counting 1 to 10 using flashcards. If the students are older we might count to 100, or 1,000 or higher! It depends on the level, and kids get a kick out of saying really high numbers. You can make flashcards, write numbers on a white board, or even count objects. Be creative!

Numbers Songs

I have recorded a few numbers songs over the years, but the still number one favorite is Let’s Count 1 to 10. Simple, and always fun with the actions.  Here is a list of the Numbers Songs I use most in my classes. Click on the link to go to the page or video with the song.

  1. Let’s Count 1 to 10
  2. Let’s Count to 20
  3. Counting to 100 by 1s

Vocabulary Use

You can do many things with numbers. Ask students, “how old are you?” and they answer, ” I am five”, etc. You can use numbers in a shopping game and use the vocabulary, “How much is it?” “It’s 25 dollars.”

Games

You can play a shopping game, restaurant game, or many other fun games with numbers. Below are links to my favorite number games to use in class:

  1. Easy Counting Game
  2. Put in Order Game
  3. What’s Missing Game
  4. Toss a ball to students and count. (not a game, but a fun activity)

Numbers Wrap up

As a teacher I like to keep things as simple as possible. To teach numbers, practice saying numbers with your students, sing a numbers song, then play a numbers game. Simple and effective. Keep it light and fun, and your students will be counting to a billion in no time! Happy Teaching!