Great news! At the end of August 2015 we will be launching our Free Language Club where you can join us for free online English classes. Find out more by checking out the video below – or click on the link:
This is a free lesson plan from You Are The Course Book – Lesson Plans by Matt Purland. You can download the complete book for free here. (.pdf – 6 MB) This book is in the public domain, which means that anybody can use it for commercial and non-commercial purposes.
Mode 1 Vocabulary Session
1. T asks each group to write down 8 interesting and random words or phrases. They must be content words, not function words. They could be completely random, or begin with the same letter (elicited from a SS), or from a particular topic, e.g. Music. SS work together – one list per group. SS can use dictionaries. One SS from each group reads out their words and T selects the most interesting and random words to write on the board – 8 in total. T does not allow boring words, e.g. table, chair, book… SS write down the whole list.
2. T checks that everybody knows all the words and leads a pronunciation drill with the words. SS have to listen and repeat each word after T.
3. T asks SS to work as a team and write down the type of each word, e.g. noun, verb, adjective, etc. When each group is ready T asks for a SS to come to the board and write the word types on the board next to the vocabulary words. T elicits whether they are correct or not. If not, T elicits the correct answer and the SS writes it.
4. Repeat 3, except with number of syllables in each word.
5. Repeat 3, except with the stressed syllable in each word, which is underlined.
6. Repeat 3, except with the stressed vowel sound in each word. SS writes it with Clear Alphabet, if possible. If not, T elicits it from SS who use the Clear Alphabet chart (p.107). SS could also write each word in Clear Alphabet.
7. Repeat 3, except with whether the stressed vowel sound is short, long, or diphthong. T models the stressed vowel sounds and SS repeat.
8. Repeat 3, except with schwa sounds circled. By the end of the session, your board might resemble something like this (with words from the topic of Music:)
…and so on.
- Try not to spend too long doing the vocabulary session. Remember to put together a lesson that provides a balanced ‘meal’ – where different skills are practised and different student needs are met. For example, while one SS might be happy to work with vocabulary for the whole lesson, another SS might prefer free practice activities, and so on.
You are welcome to join me for my next free live lesson on YouTube!
Click here to find out more: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECj82eoY_ZU
Our current free teacher training course is coming to an end tonight. The final class will be at 9.15pm CET on WizIQ.com. Please click below for full details. Hope you can make it!
You are welcome to join us for the next class in our ongoing free teacher training course, which will be presented by Dr. Muhammad Schmidt of IFTS, Kenya.He will be speaking on the subject of: You Are The Course Book Method within the larger framework of communicative ESL Teaching.
This class will take place on Wednesday, January 15, 2014 at 8:00 p.m. CET on Skype. If you would like to participate, please contact Dr. Schmidt via Skype. His Skype ID is: turnoi
The class will last for around one hour and there is a free handout which you can download here.
You can join our free teacher training course here. There are already 126 course learners. We would be delighted if you wanted to get involved!
We got off to a great start this week, with 47 learners now enrolled! There is still time for you to join this free teacher training course. It is suitable for any English teacher or trainee teacher who would like to learn how to teach without the *boring* course book!
You can find out more and enrol for free below:
The next class will take place on Monday 11th November at 8.15pm CET.
From next Monday 4th November 2013 Matt Purland will be running a free on-going teacher training course for teachers of English and ESL. Enrolment is now open so you can sign up from today! You can get all of the details here:
Title: Free Teacher Training Course for English Teachers
Goal: Learn how to teach English without a course book
Live classes: Mondays at 8.15pm CET & Thursdays at 10am CET
* FREE live classes twice a week
* Learn with an experienced English teacher and teacher trainer
* Professional development certificate when you attend 10 live classes
* Learn techniques that will help your students be more productive
* FREE access to recordings and group material (pdf, ppt, doc)
This is a course for English teachers; if you are studying to become a teacher, you are also welcome. This course is for teachers who want to learn and discuss ways of teaching English without formal material, e.g. a course book or handouts.
This course is on-going. You don’t need to attend every class – attend when you can; if you attend 10 live classes you will receive a FREE professional development certificate.
This course is based on You Are The Course Book Method. You can find out more about it and download the FREE material here: http://englishbanana.com/resources/free-books/teacher-training/
Hope to see you there!
It was fantastic to be greeted by over a hundred English language teachers at my seminar at Language Show Live last weekend! They attended my seminar at Olympia, London, on how to teach English without a course book, and it was great to see so many people who were interested in trying something new in the classroom – rather than just the usual gap-fills, multiple-choice questions, and reading comprehensions provided by the usual uninspiring ELT course books.
You can download the PowerPoint presentation that we discussed here.
In the video below I’m discussing Slide 18 and complaining about how with the course book, the writer of the course book gets to be creative, while students are reduced to completing cloze activities or reading in silence. With YATCB Method students get to experience the buzz of creativity; they are able to have ideas and work on them with their partner or group.
At the end of the seminar there were many questions from the audience. We discussed using this method within a syllabus and with ILPs; assessment, and how to persuade Directors of Studies to let you deviate from doing the book. This seemed to be the most common problem for the teachers I encountered there. They said that they would like to be more free in what they do in class, but don’t have time to let their students be creative after completing the set course book pages – which they “have to” do. Frustrating! It was great to chat to so many of you face to face after the event. I felt encouraged that there are many teachers who, like me, desire a more creative and productive approach to teaching English. One delegate, Joanna Dudzinska, asked me for the origin of the name “English Banana” and then promptly presented me with a pair of fresh bananas that I could take home! Thanks, Joanna. You can see pictures and read her side of the story in her blog here. She commented:
“The highlight of today was The Language Show at Olympia in Kensington. It was the third and last day of the annual event related to languages: teaching, learning, interpreting, translating and also travelling!
“A friend had told me about the presentation for EFL teachers. It had an interesting title: YOU ARE YOUR OWN COURSEBOOK. I agree with Matt, the speaker. Coursebooks are boring and they do not allow free thinking often suppressing creativity. I could elaborate more on that particular topic, but there is no time… However, I shall definitely be going back to Matt’s website…”
My heartfelt thanks go to Claire Shilling and the wonderful team who organised Language Show Live 2013, as well as the army of people who ensured that the event ran so well. I really enjoyed taking part – thanks for having me!
If you would like me to speak about You Are The Course Book Method at your organisation, or run a training session, please do get in touch!
I will be speaking on the subject of How to Teach English without a Course Book at Language Show LIVE at Olympia, London on Sunday 20th October 2013 at 1pm.
You can read about my seminar here:
And register for your FREE tickets here:
Language Show LIVE is “the event for people passionate about languages. Free to attend, it’s your chance to join over 10,000 language learners, teachers, translators, linguists, jobseekers and language professionals for three incredible days.”
At my seminar we will discuss:
“…how you can teach English without a course book in any environment – school, workplace, home, or online. Forget photocopying handouts and cast aside your course books! I will demonstrate You Are The Course Book Method, where your students become the main resource, going from passive consumers to active producers of content.”
Hope to see you there in October!
English Banana free resources are featured in The Guardian newspaper this week, as part of a special article for teachers entitled: “How to teach… English as a foreign language”. Emily Drabble reviews a range of English Banana books, including Big Grammar Book, the Talk a Lot series of books, and the new release You Are The Course Book 2. You can read the article here:
The visit was a great success with all of the teachers saying that they enjoyed it and learned many new techniques that they could take back to their university – and private – students in Russia.
The group leader Tatiana M. commented:
“The course provided the opportunity for the students to be active and creative at the classes, work together with other students and speak English while performing the tasks. The course integrated all of the aspects of language learning (speaking, reading, pronunciation, grammar, writing and listening) and actively involved students into the learning process. The organisation of the course (flexible schedule, the timing, course materials and accommodation) were arranged and provided on a high level. New things I learned:
- organising the learning process without a textbook
- a new approach to teaching phonetics
- reiterating the most important language points at every lesson
- a captivating and enjoyable way of working with newspaper articles”
Here is a picture of the group hard at work:
…and at play, enjoying a barbecue with some of our local students:
We even got an article in the local paper!
If you would like to join us for a language holiday – to improve your English language skills, or to brush up on your teaching practice – you are more than welcome to join us! Please click here to find out more about our offer.
What do Peru, Bangladesh, Russia, Mexico, Kashmir, and Hartlepool have in common? They are all places where English teachers are busily working on projects using English Banana.com material, having first applied for a free certificate of authorisation.
On the map below each pin represents a place where such a project is taking place:
You can find out more about each one on our amazing interactive map! Please click below to go there now:
And click here to find out more about our free licences:
Whether it’s your first day in the classroom or your fiftieth – every ESL teacher is in need of a little helping hand every now and then.
Here are 20 free classroom activities from i-to-i which include classroom tips and accompanying handouts which you can photocopy for your lessons!
Get yours here!
This is a recording of a free class I taught on WizIQ.com on 28.02.13: http://www.wiziq.com/online-class/1140564-free-english-vocabulary-and-pronunciation-workout You can download the free material that we used here: http://www.scribd.com/doc/127589616/Auto-Mode-3-Example
Here is a roundup of recent stories about English Banana Trust from the newspapers:
And here’s a short video taken by one of the participants in the recent summer school. It shows us letting our hair down at a social evening at the end of the course. We had a lot of fun! In this activity different teams had been challenged to write lyrics about the summer school to the tune of ‘Let it Be’ by The Beatles. This team didn’t win, but they still really enjoyed performing for us!
You can now download the MP3 recording of our latest class.
Left-click to open in your browser and right-click to download to your computer:
by Matt Purland (4th June 2012)