Activity: Board Games

Board games are a classic tradition that have enriched the childhoods of many and vastly improved countless rain-drenched caravan holidays. The most famous games can be found throughout the world but every country has board games of its own. In Japan it’s not hard to find someone who enjoys a game of Shogi, the Japanese…

Read More

Junior High and Up Activity – Shiritori

Batman’s Utility Belt is a marvellous thing. With everything from smoke pellets to grappling guns to shark-repellent bat-sprays he’s prepared for every situation. ESL teachers can equip themselves with an equally useful, if slightly less flashy, set of tools. One of those tools is Shiritori. I call it by it’s Japanese name since learning it…

Read More

Learning Students’ Names

Names connect us. They bring us together and personalise experiences. A student who is addressed by name will sit up and pay attention. The other benefit is that a teacher who remembers a name is showing that they care about the student. But teaching in a foreign country means students will often have names that…

Read More

Elementary Activity: Fruit Basket

One of the first activities I learned for teaching English to Elementary School kids was “Fruit Basket”. Although in Japanese it’s pronounced more like Fruits Basketo due to the way it’s translated into Japanese sounds. This simple Elementary activity is fun for everyone and it’s quite possible that you’ve played this or a variant of it in your…

Read More

BINGO in the ESL classroom

Bingo, also known as “The Game Of Kings”, is known to Japanese kids too. This makes it an easy game to appropriate for English lessons. Elementary The younger they are, the more exciting the prospect of Bingo becomes. I’ve been in some Elementary classes where all I have to do is mention the name of…

Read More

Interview Activities

What is a conversation? Why do we talk to other people? Sometimes we want to tell someone something: I’m hot. You’re very attractive. These pretzels are making me thirst. And at other times we want to find out something from someone else: How are you? What do you think about my new brown, corduroy trousers?…

Read More

The Introduction Lesson

As the new Japanese school year swings into action many new teachers will be out giving their very first lessons. Every new teacher will have to introduce themselves to the students. This can range from a short speech at the beginning of the lesson right the way to a whole fifty minutes devoted to the…

Read More