ESL etc.

Discussions on lesson planning, materials development and other issues related to English language teaching. I am currently teaching EFL in a Chinese college.

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Lesson plans, ideas and resources for bringing global issues and activism into English language teaching.
🇬🇧 English
last modified
2017-11-30 13:49
last episode published
2017-03-26 09:33
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Education Language Courses



Date Thumb Title & Description Contributors


Introduction and discussion of my first few weeks of teaching English at a college in China. author


Ideas for using roleplays in English language teaching, especially in large university classes. author

Planning a Project-Based Course

Thoughts on planning a language course from a project-based point of view. With materials. author


Ideas, problems and activities for homework in ESL/EFL classes. author

Making an English Program More Environmentally Responsible

A description of a project aimed at making an ESL / EFL program more environmentally responsible. Materials are provided at the website. author

Making an English Program More Environmentally Responsible (part 2)

Activities that were made as part of making an ESL / EFL program more environmentally responsible. Materials are provided at the website. author

Motivating Students

I talk about some of the problems I'm having motivating my students and some of my ideas for improving this next semester. I also discuss my students' final projects and plagiarism. author

An Anti-Plagiarism Activity, Professional Organizations and Other Links

I share an anti-plagiarism activity introduce several the ESL / EFL professional organizations that have special groups dedicated to global issues. author

A Discussion Activity and an Individual Action Project

A great and low-prep discussion / debate activity and a project that encourages student to engage in direct action on an issue to which they feel personally connected. Materials available at author

Boycott Activity (Discussion, Reading, Using the Internet)

This activity includes discussion questions and offers students a chance to practice doing basic Internet research. As always, materials are available at author

Advertising / Money Discussion Activities, Consumerism and Education in China

A couple of ESL / EFL activities related to money and advertising, and a bit of talk about consumerism and education in China. As always, materials are available at author

Two Discussion Activities (Students Misbehaving and Athlete Salaries), Teaching Teachers

Two ESL / EFL discussion activities - the first deals with a video clip of students misbehaving in Beijing and the second addresses athlete salaries. I also talk about an upcoming job where I'll be doing a bit of teacher training. As always, materials... author

Oral English Week

A description of oral English week, a special week at my college in China where students have English class all day long. I talk about methods and exams, and try to give a feel for what my experience of teaching English in China has been. Please visi... author

The New Semester, Website Updates and a New Discussion Activity

My plans for the upcoming semester, new content at, four useful email lists and an interesting discussion activity based on the short play "21 Lies I Will Tell My Children. As always, all links and materials are available at author

The First Day of Class

I outline my plans for the first day of the new semester teaching English at a college in China. I also mention a couple new email lists. As always, all links and materials are available at author

Ideas for Large Classes and Different Ways to Approach Content

I answer a listener's request for some ideas on getting larger classes to speak and talk about my current class. Specifically, I describe how I'm asking students to do a variety of tasks with the same (or similar) content in order to help their acquis... author

Headline Activity and My Week 3 Lesson Plan

I discuss how last week’s classes went, and I talk about what I’m doing this week, including a listening / discussion activity using headlines. As always, all links and materials are available at author

Critical Thinking, Giving Advice and Intonation

I discuss my struggles with critical thinking in China and how I handled some awkward situations. I also talk about my lesson for this week, including activities on giving advice and sentence-level intonation. As always, links and materials are availa... author

Four Reviews of Global Issues Video Games

I review four global issues video games that could be used in the language classroom: Stop Disasters (natural disasters), What Would You Do? (AIDS / HIV prevention), Food Force (hunger and food aid) and Darfur is Dying (the genocide in Darfur). As alw... author

K12 Online Conference and Issues in Chinese Education

This week, I talk about the K12 Online Conference, primarily giving some of my thoughts on the pre-conference keynote. Keynote speaker David Warlick talks about how Web 2.0-type technology is changing how we should approach our students, and I reflect ... author

A Critical Roleplay and 4 Global Issues Textbooks

I start by introducing a roleplay in which students were asked to imagine what they would do if their boss pressured them to do something illegal or dishonest. Next, I talk briefly about how I handled a textbook dialog about Tiananmen Square. I then di... author

Working Online and a Job Interview Activity

In this ESL podcast, I talk about the Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage, some online work opportunities, and a job interview discussion activity. author