language learning

7 Effective Activities for ESL Students to Study Better

Even native speakers struggle with the nuances of English grammar and tense. For ESL students, the language is much more challenging. They are comparing the rules to the ones of their native language, and they find many of them contradictory.

Let’s look on the bright side for a moment: there are many activities and online resources that can help learn with ease and find productivity for college students. The first step towards accomplishment is making learning fun.

We’ll suggest 7 unusual, but effective activities that help you learn the English language better.

  1. Work in Pairs

When you’re trying to study with too many people in a group, things can easily get distracting. Learning on your own, on the other hand, can be distracting as well. You have no one to push you forward, so it’s easy to start making excuses and leave everything for tomorrow.

The best things happen in pairs. Teachers from all around the world are recognizing this learning method as effective. Find your perfect study buddy. It can be a friend or someone you met in class. Both of you will share what you know, but you’ll also motivate each other to learn more.

  1. What Am I Doing?

Continous tense seems simple, but many ESL learners are confused: when should they use it? This simple activity will help you get used to it. What are you doing at this very moment? Keep describing your activities in English.

I’m cooking potatoes.

We’re eating.

I’m walking down the street.

Simple, yet effective.

  1. The Role Play Activity

This is something you can do with your learning partner or study group. Pick a favorite story or movie, and decide what characters you’re going to play. It’s easy to find screenplays online, so you can do that, too.

Get into your character and act! It’s not mere reading. When you’re acting, you understand the meaning of the text. It’s the best way to learn new words by intuition.

  1. Sing Along!

When you’re listening to Ed Sheeran’s songs, you understand some of the words, but it’s not easy to get them all. It’s time to hit the lyrics!

Find the lyrics of your favorite songs, play the music and start singing along. It’s a great activity that helps you master the pronunciation of new words. Plus, it makes you a faster, more proficient speaker.

  1. Use Your Flashcards!

Memorizing words and grammar rules works by repetition. When you’re learning new vocabularies in English, it’s important to have reminders that support the repetition process. Create flashcards! Attach them on the fridge or around the living room, so you’ll see them all the time.

With this activity, you’ll be building your vocabulary without much effort.

  1. Describe Characteristics and Appearance of People

Describing someone’s appearance helps you start thinking in English. When you start thinking on the language you’re learning, you’re making progress. When you see someone you know or don’t know, describe their appearance.

A tall, dark man with eyeglasses. He is slim, but with muscles. He probably works out. He looks like a smart man who reads a lot.

As you can see, we described the appearance, but we also mentioned character traits. Try this activity! It’s fun and it helps you create lasting memories of the people you meet.

  1. Use the Right Tools

The Internet gives you many opportunities to learn English faster and more effectively. We’ll list only few of the many tools you can explore:

You keep thinking there’s no time for learning English? Well, you surely have 20 minutes a day, right? This online resource gives you 20-minute lessons that teach the foundations of English language. (

Writing helps you master the language! When you’re writing essays, in particular, you’re giving structure and logical flow to your thoughts. The writers at AustralianWritings can help you with that challenge.

Activities for ESL Students is a website that gives you bilingual quizzes, vocabulary and grammar quizzes, crossword puzzles, and other activities that help you learn English.

Are you ready to add new life to your English language learning methods? Try the activities we suggested above!

The article was written by Jessica Freeman, freelance content writer.

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