17 ESL Teaching Tools to Help You Save Time & Energy
As an online ESL teacher, you know the importance of having the right tools to help create engaging lessons and make your life easier as an educator. With so many free and paid web-based tools out there, it can be hard to narrow down your choices for which are best suited for you. Read more below for a list of some of our favorite ESL teaching tools, apps, and sites!
As teachers, we can all agree on something: writing ESL reports is challenging. But fortunately, there’s a tool that can help make the process much easier. FeedbackPanda is an app that provides thousands of quality feedback templates for teachers to use who want to save time writing reports from scratch.
All you have to do is choose from a prewritten template, customize it with your student’s details, and copy and paste it where it needs to go. You can also create your own templates and share them with other teachers, as well as keep track of student data and records all in one place.
FeedbackPanda’s platform offers benefits like:
- 1000s of feedback templates you can customize and use for your classes
- Create and share your own templates with other ESL teachers
- Manage student data and records
- Integrations with many top ESL schools like VIPKid, GoGoKid, MagicEars, and more
- AI-generated smart sentences tool
- Student birthday calendar
If you’d like to see our templates, you can sign up for a free 14-day trial.
Need to create a lesson plan or an activity for an upcoming class? Busy Teacher is one of the best ESL teaching tools and can help you with that by offering thousands of ideas for activities, warm-ups, and ice-breakers for your classes. You can also find free worksheets to download on nearly any subject you can think of.
LanternFish is a web-based English teaching platform that integrates grammar and vocabulary. The system offers lessons, exercises, and quizzes in more than 20 languages. It also has an advanced chatbot app that helps learners improve their conversational skills through simulated conversations with native speakers from around the world. If you’re looking for a way to enrich your students’ learning experience on the Web, LanternFish is worth checking out!
BBC Teaching English
British Council has one of the best worldwide reputations when it comes to teaching English. This is why their tool, BBC Teaching English, is an awesome option for ESL teachers to rely on.
The online platform offers resources focused on developing your skills as a teacher. You can also use the tool to:
- Apply to training courses
- Connect with other teachers
- Download teaching and learning materials
You can browse the platform for free, but to get the most out of their resources and connect with colleagues on the platform, you’ll need to sign up for a paid account.
Want to incorporate music into your classroom? You probably know that songs are an extremely effective way to help children (and adults) develop new language skills, which is why TEFL Tunes is one of the most valuable ESL teaching tools.
All songs on this platform are categorized by grammar concepts, so it is easier for you to choose which one you will use in your class. You can also sort music by learning level, artist, or theme. Although this tool has some free plans, it is required to subscribe to access all the website’s resources.
ESL Games World
If you’re looking for an idea to make your ESL English classes more fun and dynamic, ESL Games World can help you with that.
They offer a list of online and PowerPoint games based on famous game shows with themes like grammar, pronunciation, and vocabulary. And it is all for free! This site also offers excellent printable gaming templates for you to use with students that prefer writing on paper instead of using the computer screen.
ESL Printables is a collaborative teaching resources platform. It was created by a worldwide community of ESL teachers, with the purpose of sharing class materials and ideas. On the website, teachers can find and download:
The resources are all free. But to download it, the site requires teachers to collaborate with some of their teaching material. This way, the community can keep the collection growing and updated.
Make Beliefs Comix
You’re a teacher. You want to engage your students in the material, but you don’t have time for an elaborate lesson plan. This is where Make Beliefs Comix comes in! With this comic strip generator, you can create a storyboard with pictures and text bubbles that will make it easy for your students to follow along and understand what’s happening. It’s perfect for any subject or grade level.
ESL Galaxy is a website for ESL teachers. It offers free resources such as lesson plans, grammar lessons, and links to interesting articles on teaching English.
They also have a whole section of resources for ESL adult students that focus on day-to-day vocabulary and business English. All those materials can help teachers make classes more exciting and diverse for their students.
As an ESL teacher, you always need to be up-to-date and knowledgeable about the latest methods of teaching. ESL Video is a site that provides high quality video lessons for teachers and students alike. Whether you’re looking for a lesson on how to teach English pronunciation or want to learn more about introducing your child to reading, their videos cover it all, including:
- Listening tasks
- Speaking tasks
The materials are all created by other teachers, too.
If you are looking for a more robust and professional resource center, then ESL Library is the place for you. The platform is administered and trusted by more than 10,000 learning organizations around the world, including:
- Education First
- Toronto District School Board
- NYC Department of Education
ESL Library offers multiple types of lesson collections for all ages, English levels, and formats for teachers to use in their daily activities. These include high-quality materials curated and developed by the ESL Library team to help enhance, complement, or supplement teachers’ class ideas and resources.
ESL Library charges a monthly or annual fee for its services and products. But as they say on their website, “it is priced for teachers.”
You don’t need to be a good designer to teach, but Canva will make you feel like you are. This friendly and straightforward design tool can help teachers produce everything from classroom backgrounds to rewards to printable props.
Canva is a paid tool for those who need to use all of its design resources, but it has a pretty comprehensive free version that includes everything a teacher needs.
Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab
Do you want to learn more about how to teach listening skills? Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab is the perfect place for you! This blog gives teachers of English as a second language some great tips and tricks on everything from teaching pronunciation, to managing classroom noise. With these practical strategies, your students will be well equipped with the tools they need in order to improve their listening skills.
For teachers who like to use stories to engage their students in classroom learning, StoryPlace is one of the best ESL teaching tools. The platform offers an interactive and easy-to-navigate story library that teachers can use with their ESL students of different ages (although the focus group is preschool kids).
All stories come with:
- An online story
- An online activity
- A take-home activity
- A reading list
The platform also encourages students and their parents to choose reading assignments to do after class. All these resources are free of charge and can be accessed at any time.
This incredible website is an excellent resource for ESL teachers who work with adult students and need help coming up with interesting conversation topics. ThoughtCo offers a catalog of educational content created by experts on topics like:
Englishgrammar.org brings a wealth of resources for ESL teachers, such as grammar lessons and quizzes, articles on teaching techniques, interactive games to practice grammar skills in context and more! Designed by an experienced ESL teacher who also has a Ph.D. in linguistics from UC Berkeley, this website is one you won’t want to miss.
Class Dojo is a mobile app that offers teachers the ability to manage their classroom in the palm of their hands.
This app is free for teachers and connects them with students and their parents, offer an environment where they can share:
- Student development information
Since Class Dojo works in a virtual environment, this app is perfect for ESL students and teachers.
We hope you found these ESL teaching tools valuable and that they help make your next lesson a little bit easier! Have you tried our FeedbackPanda yet? This tool will allow you to quickly send student feedback and save you hours per day.