The belief that “discussion” classes are easy to teach is one of the biggest misconceptions new teachers have. They believe that you walk into class and simply ask the students “what’s up?” Then, waves of conversation flow from the students mouths and the teacher sits back thinking about a party they will go to later in the night. Well, maybe I exaggerate but only a little. While many teachers approach their “discussion/conversation” classes this way the truth is that those teachers classes are not very good. “Discussion” classes need structure, they need a good lesson plan and they need a good textbook that is devoted to discussion classes. Today we are going to see if the textbook “Communication Strategies” written by David Paul and published by Thomson is one of those.
One of the most common goals students have is to sometime in the future use their English to get a promotion or start a new career. While there are many very good “standard” class textbooks and “discussion” class textbooks I’ve yet to find a business English textbook that I felt comfortable with. In today’s article we’re going to take a look at Cambridge University Press’s Business Explorer series. The Business Explorer series is a three level course designed for students who want to learn business English. The series covers the levels from beginner to lower intermediate and can be used with both group and private classes.
In this article going to go over the “Interchange” series of ESL textbooks. The Interchange series has a total of four textbooks or six textbooks if you consider the two upper-level “Passages” textbooks written by the same author. The four Interchange textbooks are made for young adults and adults learners of English from beginning level to high intermediate levels. It is the fourth edition which tells you how popular it truly is. It is a multiskilled textbook that goes over grammar, vocabulary, pronunciation, listening, themes and functions. These textbooks can be used in private classes or in large group classes.
Today we’re going to go over the Fifty-Fifty series from Pearson Longman. The Fifty-Fifty series is a three-level course that focuses on speaking and listening skills. There are three textbooks in the series, Fifty-Fifty Intro, Fifty-Fifty Book One and Fifty-Fifty Book Two. These textbooks are targeted towards beginner level students and lower intermediate level students. There is also a teacher’s version of the textbook that acts as a student book and teachers guide. There is an accompanying website that offers various resources for students and teachers. You can download class audio, flashcards, and worksheets there.
Today we will take a look at “Topic Talk” written by David Martin and published by EFL Press. I came across this book in a slightly unusual way in that I did not purchase it myself. It was actually left at my school by a teacher I had hired over 9 years ago. I have hundreds of different textbooks in my school and there are many that I have never even opened. After sitting on the shelf for some time I finally picked it up and leafed through it. At the time I was looking for some new class warm-up ideas. I found that a lot of the more major textbooks warm-ups weren’t producing the conversations that I wanted from my students. But before we get into that let’s go over some the basics of this book.