English Banana.com ESL Blog

The latest free material and news from English Banana.com

Free Language Club on EnglishBanana.com


Please join us for FREE live English classes on EnglishBanana.com!

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:

EnglishBanana.com’s Free Language Club


FREE ESL Lesson Plan: Mode 1 Vocabulary Session

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

Method:

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:)

Vocabulary Lesson Plan - Image 1

…and so on.

Tip:

  • 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.


All learning resources on EnglishBanana.com are now in the public domain! :)

Let’s compare two English Banana.com worksheets:

This is Worksheet A:

EnglishBanana.com Public Domain

EnglishBanana.com Public Domain

…and this is Worksheet B:

public-domain-3

EnglishBanana.com Public Domain

Did you notice the difference? Yes, they are the same worksheet, from the Big Grammar Book. But there is a crucial difference. The first one belongs to the past and the second to now and the future. The removal of the tiny copyright symbol makes a big difference to what you can now do with English Banana.com resources – all 4,000+ pages of them!

 

 


School in the Philippines uses English Banana’s Big Grammar Book for their free English Proficiency course

English Proficiency course at Cavite Southern Emerald Academy, Inc. - 2014

English Proficiency course at Cavite Southern Emerald Academy, Inc. – 2014

Meiji Geneta from Cavite Southern Emerald Academy in the Philippines emailed us recently to ask whether they could use English Banana material to run a free English course. We said yes – of course! – because all English Banana material is covered by our free licence to run courses – and all our free books are in the public domain.

Meiji wrote:

“I am from the Philippines and I have come across the English Banana website and I was very very amazed by the numerous worksheets that were made for students and teachers who are very much interested to widen their learning when it comes to the English Language. We have a school here in the Philippines and the name of the school is Cavite Southern Emerald Academy, Inc. It is a non-stock, non-profit school and we cater students in the Preschool and Elementary Department.

“Our school shares the same vision as you do because we also love to share the love for the English language. The Philippines is not a First English Country and being able to use your resources will be able help us teach the our students the english language better and in an organized manner. I believe that the resources you have put in your website are indeed very very helpful and will definitely help our students learn the very best the English Language can offer.

“We will be conducting a two week English Proficiency Class this May 19 to May 30, 2014. This will be offered to the students for free and they will be using the  1st Grammar Book of English Banana.com [Big Grammar Book]. We would like to inform the students and the parents that all resources used in this class came from English Banana.com and we would like to recognize you for this.

“Thank you so much sir for sharing with us the resources of English Banana.com to help teach children about the English Language. I am looking forward to have more English classes with our students soon and use English Banana’s resources.”

Their course was a resounding success (see pics below) and we were delighted that they chose English Banana’s Big Grammar Book for their course material. After all, why pay for expensive course books and ELT material when English Banana material is free to use?

English Proficiency course at Cavite Southern Emerald Academy, Inc. - 2014

English Proficiency course at Cavite Southern Emerald Academy, Inc. – 2014

English Proficiency course at Cavite Southern Emerald Academy, Inc. - 2014

English Proficiency course at Cavite Southern Emerald Academy, Inc. – 2014

 

 


This is a recording from a free live teacher training session on YouTube last night: Teaching Spelling and Sounds to ESL Students

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


Free Teacher Training Course – Final Class Tonight!

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!

http://www.wiziq.com/course/36615-free-teacher-training-course-for-english-teachers


Next Class in our Free Teacher Training Course for English Teachers

Dr. Muhammad Schmidt, IFTS, Nairobi, Kenya

Dr. Muhammad Schmidt, IFTS, Nairobi, Kenya

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!


Free EFL/ESL Lessons for Busy Teachers at EFL Sensei

EFL Sensei.com

EFL Sensei.com

Check out this great resource site for EFL teachers: EFL Sensei. There you will find free printable lesson plans, speaking activities, board games, conversation cards, grammar activities, and more!

Why not try this exciting jigsaw speaking activity for starters? Bourbon Street: http://www.eflsensei.com/Bourbon-Street/?path=52


Looking for Specialised Targeted English Instruction?

Try Dr. Ray’s English Clinic!

Dr Ray's English Clinic

Dr Ray’s English Clinic

More about this service:

“Our study philosophy at Dr .Ray’s English clinic caters specifically to the student who is busy, and focused on RESULTS.

“We deliver targeted instruction aimed directly at what you need, and never waste your time on exercises or instruction designed to use up time for which you pay.

“STRAIGHT TO THE POINT – NO WASTED TIME – DIRECTED SELF-STUDY FOLLOWS EVERY LESSON.”

Why not find out more today, either via Facebook or through the dedicated website?

http://drraysenglishclinic.com

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Drraysenglish/498216636920718


You Can Still Join Our Free Teacher Training Course!

Free Teacher Training on WizIQ!

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:

http://www.wiziq.com/course/36615-free-teacher-training-course-for-english-teachers

The next class will take place on Monday 11th November at 8.15pm CET.


New FREE Online Course for English Teachers – Starting Next Monday!

Free Teacher Training Course - Now Enrolling!

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:

http://www.wiziq.com/course/36615-free-teacher-training-course-for-english-teachers

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

Main Benefits:

* 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!


100+ English Language Teachers Attended My Seminar at Language Show Live 2013

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.

Waiting to do my seminar at Language Show Live 2013. A Penguin Classic, a bottle of still water, and a quiet corner away from it all...!

Waiting to do my seminar at Language Show Live 2013. A Penguin Classic, a bottle of still water, and a quiet corner away from it all…!

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.

Language Show Live 2013 (1)

Language Show Live 2013 (1)

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…”

Language Show Live 2013 (2)

Language Show Live 2013 (2)

 
Language Show Live 2013 (3)

Language Show Live 2013 (3)

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!


News from More People Using English Banana Free Material

We often get emails from teachers and other individuals who want to use our free material either commercially or on a wider scale than just printing out a few worksheets. You don’t need to contact us to take advantage of our free licences, but if you do it is always lovely to hear from you! It’s great to know that you are able to use our free material. Here is some recent news from people who are using this material for various purposes. If you feel inspired to use English Banana material after reading this news, please go ahead! 🙂

 

Using the material as content for another publication:

Antananarivo, Madagascar

“I am an English teacher in Madagascar and I’m planning to write a book because of the lack of teaching materials in my country.”

Sapporo Gakuin University, Ebetsu, Hokkaido, Japan

“Thank you very much for offering the free license to your materials. A group of teachers here at Sapporo Gakuin University are making our own textbook for our students and will offer it free like your materials, including free Moodle quizzes and activities. Your model is an inspiration. We may also use some of your materials in it, so thank you again.”

 

Using the material to teach others for free, or as paid courses:

London, UK

“Firstly I’d like to thank you for the amazing material which is really helping  me on planning my lessons.

“I live in London, I’m Brazilian and I run a free English course on Mondays and Fridays 3 hours course each day, on a Brazilian Catholic Church to help people from my country it the basics so they can start communicating and finding a job. Thank you very much!”

Banten, Indonesia

“Finally I have a courage to open English course and use your EB materials. Actually not my own place, but [a local] kindergarten school.

“I ask her permit to allow me open an English course as beginning for a primary kids. I ask her permit again to use my own name ORANGE & BANANA. Orange represent me and Banana represent your EB. I thought it will be easy to set up my own materials, but still your EB materials really really help out. Wishing for your big support to encourage me start this new experience and still freaking me out. Hehehehe.”

Stepping Stone English – Bangkok, Thailand

“I am a native English man working in Thailand for a language school. I see the language schools as over priced compared to the local economic market as they are aimed are the high society of Thailand leaving the poorer public behind. Asean is coming in 2015 and I feel I want to help the less fortunate. If they don’t have the opportunity to learn English now then I’m afraid when Asean starts they are going to be in a devastating state. I think your material is wonderful and it is perfect for the students I am aiming to help. I would like a Certificate of Authorisation to progress my plans to help the community.

“I greatly appreciate the efforts you are doing and I would greatly appreciate your support in getting my project up and running. I’m starting out on a small scale due to funding. But with your material and support I can see great things for the future and hopefully for the public of Thailand. Thank you very much for your efforts in helping the world of education.”

Hoi An, Quang Nam Province, Vietnam

“I am not teaching at a school as such, but rather in my home to students and local people in my community as I live in rural Vietnam so I don’t have a school name. As I stated I will use your resources to teach local children, and some adults, they are just very average poor working people, some in this country can afford paid education, most can’t. It’s these people that I will target and try to assist them to improve their lives through the English language.”

KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa

“I live in rural KwaZulu-Natal, South Africa.  I run Bridges of Hope for Children and currently care for 12 children.  I run a Preschool from home and am busy registering an Independent School.  There is a desperate need for English classes for people from our neighbouring Township.  I’m hoping to be able to generate an income from these classes.”

Slovakia

“My main idea is to develop an English language course, based entirely on your materials; however, selecting them and compiling them together, which would entirely target speaking and general understanding.”

 

Using the material as content for an app or website:

Saudi Arabia

“I want to use your resources. Hi and thanks for this site. Now I’m doing programming Android app (free, without ads) for learning English language. Can I use your resources in my app?” [We replied: yes, of course you can!]

New York, USA

“Hey, you have a great website! I am working on making a website for people who want to learn another language. I was looking for free resources for my website and I found you! This will really help me a lot – thanks. I’ll be sure to add your website on mine. Thank you!”


Matt Purland will be speaking at Language Show LIVE – 20th October 2013

Language Show LIVE 2013

Language Show LIVE 2013

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:

http://www.languageshowconnect.co.uk/page.cfm/Action=Visitor/VisitorID=69698

And register for your FREE tickets here:

http://www.speeddata.co.uk/Forms/Default.aspx?FormRef=LanA3Visitor

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!

Matt


English Banana free resources featured in The Guardian this week!

English Banana free resources featured in The Guardian

English Banana free resources featured in The Guardian

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:

http://www.guardian.co.uk/education/teacher-blog/2013/jun/18/teaching-resources-english-as-foreign-language


Teacher Training with Russian Teachers in Poland!

We were lucky enough to host a fantastic group of teachers from Saratov University recently at our school – Study English in Ostroda. They joined us for five nights for one of our language holidays.

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:

Teachers from Saratov University, Russia

…and at play, enjoying a barbecue with some of our local students:

Polish hospitality - a good old fashioned grill!

We even got an article in the local paper!

Article in Nasz Glos newspaper in Ostroda

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.


FREE English Banana Resource App is now available from Amazon Appstore!

You can now get our fantastic FREE English Banana Resource App from Amazon Appstore! Click the link below to go there now:

http://www.amazon.com/English-Banana-Resource-App/dp/B00CAX9ZDS

Get it now for your Amazon device!

Get it now from Amazon!

 


English Banana.com Teachers Map has been Updated!

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:

English Banana.com Teachers Map

English Banana.com Teachers Map

 

You can find out more about each one on our amazing interactive map! Please click below to go there now:

https://maps.google.co.uk/maps/ms?msa=0&ie=UTF8&msid=107553550370586956076.00046980ea6188984f567&ll=43.068888,74.53125&spn=179.132375,360&z=0&source=embed

And click here to find out more about our free licences:

http://englishbanana.com/copying-licence.html

 


NEW FREE BOOK! You Are The Course Book 2 – In Practice (480 pages)


Need Free Math Worksheets? Try Math Worksheets Land!

Math Worksheets Land

Math Worksheets Land

Math Worksheets Land provides a large amount of helpful math resources for students and teachers. The entire collection is aligned to the National Core Curriculum making it easy to include in your lesson planning.

You can find the site at: http://www.mathworksheetsland.com

 

 


NEW from i to i – 20 Free Classroom Activities!

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!

Activities book