How to Teach Grammar: it’s Not as Scary as You Think!

The past, the present and the future walk into a bar. It was tense…

Does the idea of how to teach grammar have you breaking out into a cold sweat? Well don’t fear,the i-to-i TEFL Grammar Squad are here!

Bring to your lesson

  • Worksheets
  • Pens and/or Pencils
  • Timer

Top Tips

  • Clear Goal/Objective
  • Anticipate Challenges
  • Lesson Assessment
  • Practice Presenting

Total time: 60 minutes

  1. 1. Let your students practice

    When you’re teaching, writing endlessly on the board may give you a little Pictionary practice but it won’t help your students to learn. To keep writing to a minimum, before each TEFL lesson have a look at the key grammar rules being practised, which you can write out into a basic formula on the board before class. Let your students use the sample sentences at the beginning and as the lesson goes on, erase the examples and finally the instructions. If you have well-behaved students this can be a fun team activity!

    TEFL classroom
  2. 2. Make your warm up work for you

    Use your warm up question to introduce whatever grammar lesson you’ll be covering. For instance, if you’re teaching a lesson on the past tense, ask the students ‘what did you do last summer holiday?’ Get the whole class to repeat the correct sentence to make sure they’re still listening whilst each student is talking!

    Children in classroom
  3. 3. “But teacher, why?”

    You will encounter this question in every TEFL job at some point but try and resist the urge to shout back ‘JUST BECAUSE!’. If your students do ask you a question and you have no idea of the answer then it’s better to be honest with them. They’ll respect you more in the long run if you tell them you’ll go away, research it and have the answer by next lesson.

    TEFL teacher with students in China
  4. 4. Keep it relevant

    Students generally don’t want to read, write or hear stories about little Johnny from London. Get them to tell you a story about their family, school or culture and you’ll see a lot more interested faces. For younger classes, a great way to get them talking is to jointly create a cartoon character. ‘Big Bob the dragon goes to snake-eating school at 2am every morning’ is more entertaining than ‘John brushes his teeth at 8am every day’.

    Classroom with books and chalkboard

Still a bit nervous? Then check out our Essential TEFL Book! It’s packed full of grammar help, lesson plans and 300 classroom activities!

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