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ESL forum > Games, activities and teaching ideas > please, help me    

please, help me


please, help me
Hi everybody.
I�m teaching 3 and 4 years old kids non native english speakers.
I�m having a hard time preparing 45m classes because, as you know, activities must be short.  I use games and songs, but I feel this isn�t enough. As they can�t read or write what kind of activities shoul I do with them? To teach colour, for instance? Sometimes they get too noisy!!
The biggest problem I�m facing is preparing activities for 45 minutes!!
 Can you please give me ideas?
Thanks a lot!

29 Oct 2008      

class centre

big puzzles can help. have them work by pairs or teams.

give them into their hands something they can hold, systemize, change the place of...

coloring sheets are also good

numbers: pictures to count and colour

big - bigger - the biggest is very useful and interesting for them ( if you need I have pictures for that topic)

whose ...is it? mine-his-her... we put together all our caps( or gloves, or...) and then ask somebody who doesn�t see - whose cap is it? And we put on the caps the way he-she told us. Much fun!
good luck!

29 Oct 2008     


Hi Maria,

When teaching songs to the little ones you should use some kind of material to make them understand what they are saying (pictures, videos, etc)
Once they know some colours and objects, you can make them draw and paint what you say or you may give pictures to them to tell the others what to draw and paint.
The same with positions, family members and actions: always drawing and colouring and by looking at a picture telling the others what to do.

They love being able to communicate with each other so you can create very short dialogues (different situations) and after practicing the exchange, make them represent it.

There are lots of activities you can do.

Some links you may find useful:



29 Oct 2008     


Hi Mariana!
Have a look at these links.
I hope ,you will find some new ideas for you...
Workshop for teaching ESL for YOUNG KIDS

29 Oct 2008     


Hi Marian!
I�ve been in your shoes before!
The way i solved it was the following:
1) choose a topic for the whole class
2) present the vocabulary using flashcards or drawing in on the BB - you can use memory games, what�s this?, or something funny and interesting such as taking it out from a hat or sth -
3) Prepare a written activity to do with the vocabulary - for ex: colour what you hear, use crayons, markers, acrilics, stick pieces of paper, etc
4) If you still have time left, you can teach them a song which includes the vocabulary learnt.
If you follow these steps, you�ll find that 45 mins is not enough!! LOL
If you need ideas, advice, etc. please let me know, I�ll be happy to help!!
Miss Yanis

29 Oct 2008     


Have you tried Bingo? They usually love this game and it is good to repeat vocabulary.
They also like FC memory games: you put like 5 or 6 FC and then you say: close your eyes. You turn over one FC. The student who can guess waht�s missing will be the next to turn the FC.
What about pictionary? The student goes to the board and you cover his/her eyes. Then he/she draws an object/animal and the others have to guess.
I also play miming game and animals sounds game.

29 Oct 2008     

Anna P

Stories can be great, too! Use puppets, props ( a Story Apron is a good idea), or even a flannel board. Story related activities such as role play, art work or games are also fun and enriching.  And songs! Songs are great for learning English. Can you find Greg & Steve or Hap Palmer in Portugal? Their songs are great for teaching.

29 Oct 2008     


Hia Maria.. er... Marian or Mariana (he he) a bit confusing. Hello anywayTongue
I teach Kindergarten kids and devide my 45 mins into small sections.
Intro: (5Mins) Hello song, which is the same every week, asking their names or just saying �how are you�?
Last weeks vocab: (5 mins) Repeating words from the week before by using objects (animals coming out of a bag or pointing to colours)
Story time: (10 mins) I always use a book of some kind to go along with the subject for the day.
Creative corner: (10 Mins) We make, colour or stick something to go along with the theme for the day. (they each have a folder or English scrapbook to put stuff in)
Playing Singing Moving: (10mins) Use a song, a game or some kind of finger play to get the kids moving. Incy Wincy spider - Head and shoulders and so on.
Goodbye song: (5 mins) We always sing the same song at the end of each lesson. The kids then know it is time to tidy and finish the lesson.
Things sometimes get hectic with me too but I think with very small kids you can�t expect them to sit still for very long... I find if you give them something interesting they will enjoy it and join in.
Hope I was a bit of help.
Greetings from Germany Yeti xxxx

29 Oct 2008