Classroom Videos

Are you an ESL teacher or classroom tutor who would like to develop your teaching skills? Observing experienced teachers is an excellent way to acquire classroom management techniques and acquire fun new activities, but in today's busy world it can be very difficult to schedule in-person classroom observations. With this in mind, the Minnesota Literacy Council has developed the Classroom Activities for Adult ESL Learners video series, which features professional teachers leading adult ESL classes through common classroom activities. The videos include both volunteer-led and teacher-led classrooms. Teachers and tutors can watch these videos in order to develop their teaching practices and become more comfortable introducing new activities to their learners.

Each featured activity has a PDF description of the activity directions and two videos: a full version, which shows the entire activity from beginning to end, and a short version, which gives an overview of the activity and highlights the instructions and teacher-led transitions. The activities featured in these videos were selected from the Pre-Beginning and Beginning Level ESL Curriculum Units that can be found under Curriculum and Lesson Plans.

 

Get more out of your video viewing!

Complete a Classroom Video Observation Form to analyze and reflect on what you see in each video. This can be done independently or as a group development and discussion opportunity for volunteers and teachers at a school. Also, licensed teachers in Minnesota ABE programs can complete a video observation form and receive one CEU. Email Andrea Echelberger your completed obsevation forms to recieve your CEUs.
Classroom Video Observation Form PDF

Classroom Video Observation Form MSW

 

NEW! Pronunciation Classes

  • Word Stess: Observe a beginning level class as the instructor introduces them to the concept of word stress and leads the learners through a series of controlled practice activities. The learners work with their weekly vocabulary words as they practice counting syllables, identifying stressed syllables, and grouping words according to their stress patterns.
    PDF  |   Full Video 

  • Voice Quality Settings: Observe a multi-level classroom as the instructor introduces the concept of voice quality settings and demonstrates how voice settings influence accent and the ability to generate sounds specific to the English language. The instructor leads the learners through several activities to practice producing English voice quality settings.
    Full Video  

Featured Activities

  • Picture Stories: Picture stories are a fun and engaging way for language learners to practice vocabulary and expand their speaking and storytelling skills. Learners work together in partners or small groups to put the picture story in order, and then practice telling other learners the story they created.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Concentration: Concentration helps learners to strengthen their memory and knowledge of vocabulary through an engaging and interactive game. Learners sit in a small group and take turns turning over flashcards with pictures or words of the lesson’s vocabulary. When a learner finds the two flashcards that match, he or she gets to keep them.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Total Physical Response (TPR): TPR is a technique that is used to practice listening comprehension and get learners moving. Learners listen and respond to commands that are given by the teacher using real objects and actions.
    PDF  |   Full Video  |  Short Video

  • Walking Dictation: Walking dictation is a popular ESL classroom activity that helps learners develop sort-term memory skills while reinforcing spelling, word order, pronunciation, and listening and writing skills. Learners work with partners to dictate words or sentences that are posted at the front of the room or out in the hallway. One partner reads the sentences and reports back to his or her partner. Their partner listens and writes down what he or she hears.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Letter/Sound Drill: Letter/Sound drill helps to reinforce letter and sound correspondence in the broader context of a vocabulary lesson to help learners develop the phonemic awareness that they need in order to sound out words. Learners listen to the sounds that letters make, then the letter/sound correspondence is reinforced as they: trace the letters on the table while saying the sounds, write the letters while saying the sounds, trace letters where they appear in the weekly vocabulary, copy the full words down, and read the words out loud.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Conversation Queue: Conversation queue gives the teacher the opportunity to assess whether or not each learner has mastered a simple speaking task such as a question/answer pair or a short dialogue. The class breaks into two lines with the learners at the front of each line facing one another. Each line is assigned a different speaking role, and the learners take turns speaking to one another while the teacher monitors.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Exit Ticket: Exit ticket is a quick wrap-up activity that allows the teacher to gauge learner comprehension and gather information about the learners’ mastery of a topic or concept. Learners respond to a written or verbal cue as they leave at the end of class.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Ball Toss: Ball toss is an active and engaging activity that allows learners to practice their speaking skills and reinforce vocabulary. Learners stand in a circle and take turns asking and answering questions as they throw a ball to one another.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Substitution Drill: Substitution drill is a quick activity that reinforces vocabulary and language structures. Learners repeat a sentence, substituting  one word in the sentence for another with picture or written cues.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Concentric Circles: Concentric circles is a speaking and listening activity that provides every learner in the class an equal opportunity to speak. Learners stand in an inner and an outer circle facing each other. They ask and answer questions or discuss a topic. When the teacher calls time, they move over and repeat the process with a new partner.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Mingle Grid: Mingle grid is a highly interactive activity speaking activity that is a favorite with many ESL teachers. Learners get out of their seats and move around the classroom, asking set questions to other learners and recording their responses on a grid.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Post-It™ Chart: Post-It™ chart is a hands-on activity designed to help learners interpret graphs and charts that using learner data. Learners respond to a question and write their responses on a post-it™ note. The notes are then organized into columns, and the learners create a graph around the columns.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Number of the Day: Number of the day is an extended numeracy activity which provides learners with extended practice with numbers and basic math skills. Learners identify a number of the day, then use that number to practice tallying, counting money, writing number words, comparing, and addition and subtraction equations.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video

  • Walk, Talk, Trade: Walk, talk, trade is a participatory activity that reinforces students’ familiarity with vocabulary through repetition and interaction. Students receive a card with a picture or vocabulary word on it, then move around the classroom asking and answering questions and swapping cards.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Dialogue and Dialogue Variations: Dialogue and Dialogue variations are activities that provide practice with listening and speaking skills in structured conversations. Using variations of a dialogue gives learners the opportunity to introduce their own responses into the activity and create a more authentic language experience. Learners practice a set dialogue, discuss possible responses that they can use, and then take turns saying the dialogue with their classmates.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Jigsaw: Jigsaw reading is a cooperative learning technique where learners develop reading skills while working together to build comprehension. Learners work in small groups to become experts on a section of a longer text, then form new groups with a representative from each section. Learners take turns teaching their new group about their section of the text.
    PDF  |  Full Video  |  Short Video
     
  • Vocabulary Bingo: Vocabulary bingo is a fun and populary activity that gives learners the opportunity to develop reading fluency through increasing sight word recognition and reading speed. Learners play bingo using cards with vocabulary words written on them. The teacher may create the cards ahead of time, or learners may fill out the cards before the start of the game.
    PDF |  Full Video  |  Short Video