Classroom Activities Breakdown


Some EFL and ESL classroom activities don’t work all the time or they may work for some classes but fall apart for others. What is certain is that flexibility and professionalism may be of extreme importance. There are also some techniques that may help teachers overcome teaching breakdowns.

  • Be aware of learning styles
  • Prepare interesting material.
  • Prepare material that meet learner needs
  • Don’t expect immediate retention
  • Learning occurs by doing


Every activity should revolve around a well-delineated set of steps.

  • A pre-stage:
    Learning from scratch is a discredited theory. Take time preparing the learners schematic knowledge. Remember that they don’t come to the classroom out of the blue. They all have some prior knowledge that you can use to get them involved. “We neverĀ  learn from scratch!”
  • A while-stage:
    The activity itself. It’s important to think of organization. It’s nice to have a lesson plan but it’s nicer to be able to change, modify, add at any moment. Unpredictable events happen from time to time. So be prepared to show your mastery of the learning process and your professional management of the learning environment. Examples of unpredictable events:

    1. The activity you prepared might be a bit beyond the learners level. ( Reduce your expectations)
    2. The opposite situation might also be possible. Your may have gifted learners and the activity you intended to assign is far blow their level. (be bold and don’t underestimate your learners potential)
    3. The activity might take too much more timeĀ  than you hoped. (Assign some of the work to be done at home.)
  • A post-stage:
    A follow-up. This might be a writing task, a discussion activity, a chart filling, an information transfer …

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