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Supplemental Teaching Resources to Help Adult Learners Learn English

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    Supplemental Teaching Resources to Help Adult Learners Learn English

    Supplemental Teaching Resources to Help Adult Learners Learn English
    Admin - Jul 09 2016

    Learning a foreign language may appear to be a daunting task to anyone embarking on this journey. Moreover, it is that much more difficult at an older age. The plasticity of the young mind allows it to be easily molded and grasp a new language relatively effortlessly. Adults, with other commitments, families of their own, and responsibilities of a full time job, often find it extremely difficult to grasp a new language. However, there are many resources available to facilitate learning English in an appealing and engaging manner for learners of all ages and ethnicities.


    Targeted learning is perhaps the best approach, as it identifies the needs of every individual learner and develops a lesson plan according to their strengths and weaknesses. The internet offers a treasure-trove of resources, including sample quizzes to be used for assessment purposes:


    Incorporating Content and Language in Assessment

    This source allows practitioners to assess skills of students prior to and upon completion of various fundamental units. Utilizing this technique ensures the educator that after introducing and leading students through skills pertaining to a unit, a satisfactory outcome is guaranteed. It is important for these assessments to build upon past units to ensure that knowledge isn’t lost due to a lack of practice. Combining vocabulary, grammar, and content comprehension is the key to effective evaluation of students’ skills and ability to retain what they have learned. In conjunction with assessments involving sentence completion, error identification, and proper vocabulary usage, teachers have the resources necessary to evaluate students’ progress.


    Being able to verbally communicate is among the highest priorities for adult learners. High quality audio goes a long way towards aiding beginner and intermediate learners in grasping the structure of the English language and pronunciation of commonly used words. The following website provides audio pertaining to daily activities, including; jobs, house chores, schooling, sports, health, and shopping.


    Speaking is Easy

    Incorporating this tool into your teaching manual will keep students interested and improve their speaking fluency. Easy Speak offers 20 conversational phrases each for a diverse range of 19 topics, the variety enables students access to listen and recite these commonly used phrases. As this resource is found on the internet, further practice could be assigned for students to rehearse individually from the comfort of their own homes.


    Time and efficiency are always key and at the same time keeping students engaged and interested allows an instructor to best instill the necessary skills into her students. Games are effective tools used by many teachers to enrich students’ learning experience.


    Scrabble is a valuable asset in a teacher’s repertoire when teaching beginners. Building vocabulary is of paramount importance for novice learners. There is no better tool than Scrabble for this purpose. Learning while having fun playing this games will go a long way towards instilling knowledge with little effort.


    Scattergories is the perfect avenue for students to brush up on recently learned vocabulary. The game is divided into ten categories and upon rolling a 26-sided die, a letter is chosen for every round. Players then take turns naming a word from the designated category beginning with the letter chosen for that round. Scattergories helps teachers specify categories unique to the unit being taught at the time.


    Balderdash is best employed for teaching advanced students, however it could also be modified for beginners. This game involves the moderator (the teacher in this case) giving an ambiguous word and every student must invent a definition for the word in the hopes that his/her fellow students believe it to be the true meaning of the word. Each student writes down their false definition on a piece of paper. The teacher also writes the true definition of the word. Then students vote on the correct definition and a point is awarded to students who determine the correct definition of the word. This game is ideal for expanding the vocabulary of students of all levels.


    Taboo is a game played by two teams where students must try to get their team to guess a given word through oral descriptions without using a few predetermined words. The description is restricted to a few sentences to encourage clear and concise explanations of the word. This entertaining game encourages students to utilize synonyms they have picked up during your lessons and expands vocabulary and communication skills.


    Phrases Against Humanityis a more advanced tool to be used for teaching intermediate students. It facilitates the learning of syntax usage for commonly used phrases. It is most beneficial to use this game as a supplemental resource upon having taught a few phrases over the course of a unit. Students will become well versed in using phrases in a contextual setting, and it is useful for recognizing the differences between noun clauses and noun phrases. This learning tool is best implemented by using it in conjunction with a projector showing the general rules for syntax usage. Furthermore, learning in groups facilitates peer-to-peer interaction and encourages first person learning.


    It is often claimed that music is the language of the soul, but it is also helpful towards learning language in itself. Nursery rhymes are good for teaching younger students, however for adult learners, songs with clear, easy to understand lyrics are ideal. I Will Always Love You, Time of My Life, Someone Like You, and Here Comes the Sun are some of the recommended musical choices for teaching adults. The following website offers links to songs and associated quizzes to make learning English fun and enjoyable:


    Learn English with Songs

    The website offers a mix of old classics, and new age masterpieces to provide a variety of compositions to fulfil unique musical preferences. You are offered an opportunity to browse by level and find the appropriate difficulty for your class. Furthermore, there is an option to search by type; get your classroom in the festive mood with Christmas songs in December, or perhaps some love tunes are just what is needed for Valentine’s Day. There is endless room for creativity when it comes to music and the classroom.



    With an abundance of resources available at your fingertips, the options are seemingly endless to keeping your classroom engaged and fascinated, whilst instilling the fundamentals of the English language within them. Combine a rudimentary assessment with supplementary resources such as audio material, interactive games, and music oriented learning to bring out the maximum potential of your students. Learning can be fun and the enthusiasm begins with the resources you, the teacher, incorporates into each lesson. 

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