listening

The words "on the spot" above an arrow pointing to the center of a target

Purpose: This small group activity gives learners opportunities to practice formulating questions and answering a wide variety of questions.

Preparation Time: None

Materials Needed: None

Woman listening with her hand up to her ear

Purpose: When it comes to developing strong communication skills, strengthening listening skills is critical. This activity helps learners practice listening to both questions and answers, as well as improve their auditory memories.

Preparation Time: None

Materials Needed: Several small talk questions

ESL teacher watching adult learner review vocabulary

Encouraging very beginning level learners to speak English and participate in classes can be a challenge, but setting speaking routines and planning activities that allow for lots of interaction can give even the lowest level learners opportunities to build their speaking skills. The new video Adult ESL Literacy Level Instruction: Building Speaking Skills features a pre-beginning level adult ESL class moving through a high-energy level speaking lesson.

index cards with action words laying with a whistle on a blue lanyard

Purpose:  A fun, energizing team game that develops listening for specific information skills

Preparation Time: 10 minutes

Materials Needed:  Song, slips of paper with words from the song, tape

Procedure:

standing woman holding a hand to her ear

Purpose:  To encourage learners to practice listening to each other and recalling specific information

Preparation Time:  None

Materials Needed:  None

Procedure:

  1. As a class, brainstorm a list of questions that learners can ask one another. Write the questions on the board. The questions should be personal questions on the topic that the class is currently studying.

Example: Weekly topic: Food and Shopping

two stick figures with overlapping speech bubbles

Purpose:  To practice using vocabulary words in a conversational setting

Preparation Time:  10 minutes

Materials Needed:  list of 5-10 vocabulary words, one copy per learner

Procedure:

clouds in the shape of question marks against a blue sky

Purpose:  To keep a conversation going, learners need to be able to ask follow-up questions in English. This activity provides some support and structure as they practice using follow-up questions.

Preparation Time:  none

Materials Needed:  whiteboard, markers

Procedure:

multi-colored speech bubbles

Purpose: To facilitate students speaking to each other, to get to know classmates and to use vocabulary related to the day’s lesson

Prep Time: 3-15 minutes

Materials: copies of the conversation grid (see link below)

Prep:
Version 1: print the grid, write a title on it, and write four questions related to today’s lesson on it, and then make copies of it

Version 2: print the grid, write a title on it and make copies of it

Adult learner wearing headphones looking at a computer with a volunteer looking on

This online reading text repository was designed to create leveled reading selections that are appropriate for and valued by adult learners.  These materials, combined with the research-proven strategies of repeated reading and guided oral reading, aid in building learners' fluency and comprehension skills. This project helps adults become better readers and more informed consumers, parents, employees, citizens and community members.  The focus of these reading selections includes topics such as:  Civics, Employment, Housing, Health, School, Money, and Government. 

hands clapping

Purpose:  A fun and easy warm-up to help learners build their listening skills and practice distinguishing vocabulary words

Preparation Time:  None

Materials Needed:  None

Procedure:

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