Category Archives: communicative skills

Breaking News English ESL Lesson Plan on Hurricane Sandy

Breaking News English ESL Lesson Plan on Hurricane Sandy

A Journalistic Type of Resource.

There are absolutely tonnes of activities to select from in this lesson plan on Hurricane Sandy.  Essentially it is based on developing communicative skills (speaking, listening, reading and writing) and vocabulary for environmental disasters.

There are warm up, pre-reading, during reading and after reading activities.Also incorporated are quizzes, role plays, making up your own survey, discussion ideas, spellings, gapfills, putting whole text back together again, forming sentences, punctuation and writing ideas.

Lots and lots for you to do. Simply click the title link and enjoy!

This Week In History

This Week In History

A resource from EnglishClub.com with a vocabulary activity (Wordchecker), an article to read, a video to watch and then a quiz to complete testing your understanding of the task.


17 October 1961

Protesting Algerians Shot Dead In Paris

French police kill up to 400 people marching in support of Algeria’s independence.



Culture Secrets – North – Canada – News – CBC Player

Culture Secrets – North – Canada – News – CBC Player

from CBC.ca Player

I loved these videos when I came across them. There are 14 of them in total.  Some are presented in English and some are presented in other indigenous languages with subtitles in English. Click on the title link to access all 14 and then click on the video you want to watch. 

They describe the aspects of culture that are important to each of the 14 northern people featured.  I haven’t watched them all yet but am sure to do so. They are fascinating!

From Laakuluk Williamson Bathory’s  raven mask dancing showing her connect, collaborate and share her culture through dance; to Romeo Saganash (Cree Politician) guiding and sharing his home away from home in Quebec City; and Kiera-Dawn Kolson of Yellowknife, a Tso’Tine-Gwich’in artist and motivational speaker.  

They are truly inspiring and illustrate perfectly how to value cultural diversity in society allowing people to present their own stories.  

British Council Elementary Podcast Episode 6

TEFL Vocabulary, Grammar and Communicative Skills.



If you are a beginner (A2 CEFR level) these British Council Podcasts are excellent for getting you started.  As the week progresses I will post up other related work which will be appropriate for different levels of student ability.  If you are an Intermediate level of student you may want to use this resource to revise and then extend your knowledge.  Advanced students may just want to dip into the additional and other resources added during the week.

Go to: 

Find the audio link (MP3) right click and save it so you can listen to it whenever is convenient for you. The podcast comes with a support pack and transcript which is 22 pages long.  Use this link:
Download and do the exercises.

Main Contents of Podcast This Week

  • Telling a story – ‘being late’.
  • What famous person would you like to meet and why? Frida Kahlo, a famous Mexican painter
  • Vocabulary quiz – words beginning with (single consonant sounds)
  • Kazakhstan – a comparison of ‘old’ and ‘new’.  Astana (capital city) versus traditional mountain scenery.  ‘Berkutchy’ – a traditional eagle keeper or modern occupations.
  • Expressing an opinion – how ‘green’ are you?
  • Dialogue of Carolina from Venezuela when she is at university deciding what societies and clubs to join.
  • Telling/retelling a joke
Here is a summary of the main language points of the podcast. Try to get more practise with these language points during the week if you can:
  1. Use of the word ‘like’ as a verb, preposition and informal conversation filler.
  2. Informal language and phrases.
  3. Giving information to others.  For example: phone numbers, addresses.
  4. Use of the phrase ‘as well’
I will follow up with work that is related through the week.  This work will be graded for different levels of student ability.

British Council Elementary Podcast – 4


TEFL Vocabulary, Grammar and Communicative Skills.



If you are a beginner (A2 CEFR level) these British Council Podcasts are excellent for getting you started.  As the week progresses I will post up other related work which will be appropriate for different levels of student ability.  If you are an Intermediate level of student you may want to use this resource to revise and then extend your knowledge.  Advanced students may just want to dip into the additional and other resources added during the week.



Find the audio link (MP3) right click and save it so you can listen to it whenever is convenient for you. The podcast comes with a support pack and transcript which is 22 pages long.  Use this link:
http://learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/sites/podcasts/files/learnenglish-podcasts-elementary-01-04-support-pack-transcript.pdf

Download and do the exercises.

Main Contents of Podcast This Week

  • How are you feeling? Enquiring about somebody’s health after they have been ill.
  • What famous person would you like to meet and why? Bob Marley
  • Vocabulary quiz – nouns and verbs
  • China – Cheung Chau Bun Festival
  • Expressing an opinion – Do you prefer to read a book or watch a film?
  • Dialogue of Carolina from Venezuela on the train on her way up to Newcastle.
  • Telling/retelling a joke
Here is a summary of the main language points of the podcast. Try to get more practise with these language points during the week if you can:
  1. British money – pounds and pence vocabulary
  2. informal phrases – what do you fancy, this ones on me, stuff
  3. phrasal verbs – it depends on
I will follow up with work that is related through the week.  This work will be graded for different levels of student ability.






British Council – Elementary Podcast 3


TEFL Vocabulary, Grammar and Communicative Skills for Beginners.



If you are a beginner (A2 CEFR level) these British Council Podcasts are excellent for getting you started.  As the week progresses I will post up other related work which will be appropriate for different levels of student ability.  If you are an Intermediate level of student you may want to use this resource to revise and then extend your knowledge.  Advanced students may just want to dip into the additional and other resources added during the week.



Find the audio link (MP3) right click and save it so you can listen to it whenever is convenient for you. The podcast comes with a support pack and transcript which is 22 pages long.  Use this link:
http://learnenglish.britishcouncil.org/sites/podcasts/files/learnenglish-podcasts-elementary-01-03-support-pack-transcript.pdf
Download and do the exercises.

Main Contents of Podcast This Week

  • Is that a new shirt that you are wearing?
  • What famous person would you like to meet and why? Jonathon Ive
  • Vocabulary quiz – colours
  • South Africa – football matches and the Vuvuzuela
  • Expressing an opinion – Why don’t more people watch women’s football?
  • Dialogue of Carolina from Venezuela at lost luggage and in the underground.
  • Telling/retelling a joke
Here is a summary of the main language points of the podcast. Try to get more practise with these language points during the week if you can:
  1. use of ‘could you’ to make a request in a more polite way
  2. pronunciation – silent letters and linking of sounds
  3. friendly gestures from older people – ‘love’ and ‘dear’
  4. phrasal verbs – to look at, to look for, to look after, to look forward to
  5. use of ‘the’ with the names of musical instruments
I will follow up with work that is related through the week.  This work will be graded for different levels of student ability.






Challenging Perceptions on Disability

Life Rolls On 

Event at Venice Beach in 2011

I have come acrross some very good video resources from a website called http://www.explore.org.  With the soon to start ParaOlympic Games in London I thought they were rather topical.  They will cover a variety of different issues and are referred to on the website as ‘The Differently Abled Series’.

The first resource relates to young people with spinal injuries and an organisation called ‘Life Rolls On’. 
                           
A PDF document with resource links to download is on the TEFL Global Resources Communication Page. 

I truly believe this organisation is really challenging people’s perceptions of ‘disability’ and that is excellent news.