The inclusion of fun, engaging activities in the classroom can improve motivation and provide a meaningful context for learning. In this presentation, we will demonstrate various classroom management techniques, vocabulary reinforcement activities, songs to practice various skills, and task-based games and activities that help make class more engaging, thus increasing motivation.  While the impact of these activities on time is small, the impact on the overall classroom atmosphere, student rapport, and level of motivation is huge. After providing a theoretical background for our methods, we will provide detailed handouts and materials to the participants.


    It’s time to close the book! Students in intensive ESL programs are usually immersed in English for 20 contact hours per week and can easily become tired, frustrated, and bored by the challenge of learning a second language. The inclusion of fun, engaging activities in the classroom is effective and can improve motivation and provide a meaningful context for learning. In this 60-minute practice-oriented presentation, we demonstrate classroom management techniques, vocabulary reinforcement activities, songs to present and practice various skills, and task-based games and activities that help make class more motivating and engaging.

     Students like/need to laugh and relax sometimes during their arduous studies. Simple, enjoyable activities that are made a regular part of the classroom experience can promote a lower affective filter (Krashen) and higher language acquisition. Multiple forms of input are a successful way for students to effectively understand, process, and retain information (Szynalski, 2001). These activities also target a variety of learning styles (Fleming, 2009) and can give students a break from daily textbook-driven activities. In addition, these methods can cater to students’ Multiple Intelligences (Gardner).

     These simple activities, techniques, strategies, and methods that we present provide a change of routine in language classrooms for all ages and levels, whether the learner is five or fifty-five, beginner or advanced. Many of these simple activities require only minimal preparation time and can be easily implemented in class on a daily basis. Others can supplement and reinforce traditional curriculum.