Online English Classes Esl – Starting your English as a Second Language (ESL) class online is the best time to set the tone. Research shows that effective warm-up activities can help students perform better in class and support student engagement and motivation for learning. They can also provide students with a chance to be creative and solve problems right at the start of the lesson.
While there are many great warm-up ideas that work well in the physical class, not all of them translate well in online classes.
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In this guide, you’ll find a range of fun, low-prepared warm-up activities for kids, teens, and adult learners.
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Young learners may find the transition to English more challenging than older learners. This makes it really important to start your online class on a fun note.
So here are some low-prep warm-up ideas for babies that will help you do just that:
This is a fun online warm-up for young learners, who have limited language skills. The goal is for students to guess what is making noise. With a little adaptation, it can work equally well in individual classes and group lessons.
In group lessons, the first child who guesses the answer correctly wins one point. In one-to-one classes, the child has to guess as many noises as she can in one minute.
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Using YouTube, Spotify, or other media streaming services, queue up a series of sounds that students should know and names for in English (e.g. horn, cow, plane, etc.).
As a hint, search for “____ sound effect” and you will find what you are looking for very quickly.
After each noise, show a picture of what the noise is making. Very young children may like to mimic being the animal or object in the photo. It’s a bit silly and helps burn some energy at the start of the lesson.
Every English teacher knows that young learners love memory games. In addition to fun, memory games can bring real benefits to children. For example, these games show the importance of concentration and attention to detail and help practice short-term memory recall. But some games translate to online teaching better than others.
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Kim’s game is a good example of an online ESL heater. Played by Scouts and Guides, it is a fun memory game.
Kim’s game works just as well in groups as it does in individual lessons. You can also use it to review groups of words, such as food or forms, and even introduce new topics.
This fun variation of Kim’s game takes only 5 minutes and requires no preparation. It requires your students to focus and use their powers of observation.
If you find this article helpful, you may also want to learn more about teaching English to children online.
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Music has a powerful effect on children’s brains. Studies have found that nursery rhymes and songs help children and children’s language development.
When it comes to children learning a second language, songs can expose them to new words. The songs also demonstrate good pronunciation and intonation and help students remember vocabulary.
You can use the songs as a warm-up activity or as ways to interrupt the lesson and get the class back on track. Here are some popular choices for young learner classes:
Pro tip: If you can, take the time to create small props or use toys to mimic the lyrics. For example, if you have small plastic farm animals, Old MacDonald can really come to life!
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Good warm-up activities are really important in getting your students to the area. These ESL warm-up activities for adults and teens take five minutes (or less!) And are sure to be a hit with your students.
This quick warmer is suitable for teenagers or adults with an English level of B1 or higher. It can be easily adapted for group or individual lessons. The goal is to guess who did which activity during the week.
Game-based warm-ups are a great way to connect with students and keep them alert, energized, and ready for learning. In fact, using games in the classroom can improve student learning by up to 23%, according to UNICEF.
A quick quiz is a great way to review vocabulary or language concepts from recent lessons, or even to find out how much your student knows about the next upcoming topic.
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There are so many options for creating a quick quiz to start your class, and Kahoot and Quizlet are two of the most popular:
GeoGuessr is a fun free online game where students can explore the world. Use the Street View feature on Google Maps and place the viewer in a random place in the world. The goal is to look around and try to figure out where you are. The closer your guess is to the correct position, the more points you win.
It’s a fun way to introduce many different language concepts and topics, such as driving directions, speculation modal verbs, and descriptive language for countries and cities.
Plus, it will hone your students’ critical thinking and problem solving skills, tools that are sure to help them learn English!
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Read more online teaching tips in our article on how to prepare and teach online lessons.
When teaching online, it can be difficult to read the classroom and measure your students’ energy, or guess what kind of day they have had. But a good warm-up activity can provide a reset button for both of you.
With the help of these different warm-up activities for ESL classes, your class will get off to a great start, regardless of whether your student is seven or seventy.
Once your student is “in the zone” – relaxed, alert and focused – they will be much more ready to learn and progress faster.
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If you are interested in teaching English online to young learners, teenagers or adults, check out our selection of English tutoring jobs online at.
Mildred is a bilingual content marketer and a former college instructor of Hispanic literature and linguistics. She holds a BA in Humanities and Communication, a Masters in Spanish Language and Culture from the University of Salamanca and a Doctorate in Hispanic Studies from the University of Puerto Rico. You have worked in content marketing in various industries, including PropTech, TravelTech and EdTech. A firm believer in the power of education, Mildred loves creating content that can help students on their language learning journey. We have released the first ESL resume step by step! Our vision is to create the best and most beautiful online ESL resume. Here is a sample!
In the coming months, it will release a step-by-step ESL curriculum of A1 to C1 lessons, giving teachers the opportunity to take students from beginner to advanced, all with our online digital content.
We released our first online lesson content over three years ago and it now offers over 700 lessons in various categories. In those years, we have received multiple requests from teachers and educational institutions to put together a step-by-step curriculum. We have learned a lot in a few years and have teachers using our content in all kinds of learning environments. It seemed like the perfect time to move forward with a step-by-step online ESL resume. Earlier this year, we decided to invest time and resources to plan, design and create a curriculum based on user expectations and current pedagogical theory.
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In the planning phase, we looked at the areas we wanted to improve, such as sequencing, flexibility and adaptability. We also plan to integrate grammar and vocabulary with reading, listening, writing and speaking skills. Instead of constantly producing new lesson content and homework, we spent a significant amount of time researching the latest studies on learning English as a second language. Then the hard work began.
Obviously, we’re using a new model and think it’s both professional and engaging. We’ve improved our understanding of instructional design and paired it with an updated color palette. We kept what you already liked about our content and improved the flow, visuals and sequence of the exercises.
To create a step-by-step online ESL curriculum that works in today’s teaching environments, we’re doing what all ESL content publishers do today. First, there are the modules: A1 to C1. Modules include themed units. Each unit explores a theme through a series of lessons. Teachers will take different amounts of time to cover one unit. Instead of creating 1-hour lessons, our curriculum allows teachers to move at different paces with their students. We estimate that teachers will need a minimum of 4-6 hours to cover each unit.
In nearly every lesson on our step-by-step online ESL curriculum, students will have the opportunity to practice reading, writing, listening and speaking skills. We’ve reduced the amount of explicit grammar, added professional audio recordings, and introduced vocabulary at a more appropriate pace.
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Three units comprising 12 lessons are now available to our Premium subscribers on the site and we will release lessons at the beginning of each month until the full step-by-step online ESL curriculum is available in mid-2019.
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