20 Ways to Use Photos to Teach English

SuOn College in Toronto, Canada organized a two month training program for English teachers from China.  There are 3 groups of teachers (about 130 teachers in total) who are interested in learning about Canadian teaching methodology.  I had the pleasure of working with a group of 46 teachers this week.

Most of the 2-day training session that I was responsible for focused on demonstrating the Communicative Approach. Teachers had an opportunity to try out several warm-up activities, Information Gaps, a Jigsaw Learning activity and reporting back using a gallery approach (for more on reporting back after brainstorming, read this past blog post https://patrice-palmer.mykajabi.com/blog/six-ways-to-report-back-after-brainstorming).   One of our activities looked at how to use photos creatively with our students.  I had blogged about this several months ago, and thanks to my teaching colleagues from China, I have more ideas to expand the...

Continue Reading...

12 Reasons Why Teachers Should Use Warm-up Activities (they are more than just fun & games!)

Do you use warm-up activities before you start teaching?  Warm-up activities are more than just “fun and games”!  My most popular download is my free Top 20 Warm-up Activities so many teachers are interested in using warmers as part of their lesson.

https://patrice-palmer.mykajabi.com/products/top-20-warm-up-activities-for-esl-efl-teachers (Vol 1). 

 Here are some comments from teachers who have downloaded this FREE resource:

"Thank you so much !! They are great to use in my class and very creative! :)" Gabriela

"Thank you for sharing. It means a lot when an ESL/EFL teacher is willing to share ideas. These especially help new teachers and those who have exhausted ideas or keep repeating the same activities over and over again." Rashida

"Thank you for sharing this material. Amazing. I really appreciate it." Andriati

"This is EXACTLY what I need! Thank you so much Patrice! I am so impressed with this resource!!!" Adrienne


What is a...

Continue Reading...

Mentorship for New Teachers: Meaningful Professional Development

Last week-end, I presented at the annual TESL Toronto conference. The topic for my workshop (I will call it Workshop 2) was How to Survive and Thrive as New ESL Teacher (http://www.slideshare.net/PatricePalmer/how-to-survive-and-thrive-as-a-new-esl-teacher). It was a revised/condensed version of a workshop (I will call that one Workshop 1) that I gave in April. In both workshops, I was inspired by the keen-spirited new teachers who attended.

If you read my blog post after Workshop 1, you will know that in the first activity, I asked teachers to complete the following sentence "Being a New Teacher is"...

These were their answers:

nerve wracking
a lot of work

I provided Workshop 2 participants with the above list and asked them to add to it. They agreed with everything on the list and added:

a joy ride

I am not sure about you, but I certainly wouldn’t want to go to work every day...

Continue Reading...

Six Ways to "Report Back" after Brainstorming

Last week, I wrote about brainstorming (if you missed that blog post/interview with Hall Houston & Gerhard Erasmus, click here https://patrice-palmer.mykajabi.com/blog/what-teachers-need-to-know-about-brainstorming). I learned some interesting things about brainstorming from my interview with them despite 20 years of teaching!  It just goes to show that being an ESL/EFL teacher can never get boring if you like learning, and want to continue to develop your teaching skills.  

So what happens after students have brainstormed?  A common teaching technique is to have students report back to the whole class.  As a teacher or trainer, do you know more than one way to have students report back or do you use the same technique again and again?  In order to keep things interesting for our students (and for us as teachers), it is important to try new techniques. 

Here are 6 different techniques for reporting back: 

1. The most...

Continue Reading...