Materials for teaching English to beginners

Materials for teaching English to beginners

by | May 17, 2019 | Blog

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We often get asked for links to free or affordable lesson material for teaching English. So in this final blog in a three part series, we have outlined our favourite websites, books and resources for teaching beginners and why we like them.

Learn how to use materials like this with our Spotlight Live TESOL course on Teaching Beginners.

Enjoy browsing and we hope you find these links useful for your classes.

PDFs for teaching asylum seekers and refugees. Includes working with preliterate and non-literate learners:

2. iteslj
A 1-page overview on approaches to teaching ESL beginners here at

3. OnestopEnglish
A great site, with 10 step-by-step lessons for absolute beginners free online with teaching notes:
Each plan is split into 2: for learners with and without knowledge of the Roman script.

4. Excellence Gateway
Stepped curriculum for ESOL entry level 1, 2 and 3 (elementary, pre-intermediate and intermediate levels learners), some excellent beginner material: colourful and vivid but you have to click on a link to each individual unit, which is rather cumbersome:

5. Minnesota Literacy Council
Simple ESL lessons for everyday activities. Free and online: at work, calling in sick to a child’s school, at the clinic. Each lesson starts with pictures/photos to outline the concept. The story or dialogue follows with questions underneath. Useful ideas at the start of the document and there is a sample plan at the end:

6. Skills workshop
Printable and ready-to-use lessons for ESOL classes. At the drop-down, select (E1 which is entry level, meaning low ‘elementary’ level Ð above beginner) and at the ‘subject area’ drop-down, select what you want to practise. Some good lesson ideas with accompanying worksheets here:

7. Skills Workshop (again) – 100 most frequent words in alphabetical order:

8. ESL flashcards
Free, downloadable and printable flashcards:

9. Pictures of English Tenses Elementary
View and download this book online:


All the above links are websites/materials for teaching those with little or no English. 

We we go into greater detail on all these resources in our book Teaching English in Church, available through Amazon here.

Found a broken link?  Please let us know at:

Where next? Take a look at our previous blogs on Bible-based resources and our favourite free online materials for teaching English to second language speakers.

Want to know more about how to teach English? Check out our accredited online TESOL courses today.


  1. Nehal

    I need goog material for my pupils to be better in English

    • William Bradridge

      Hello Nehal,
      This page provides links to material that is free to download and use for English language teaching. Also see the links at the bottom to two further blogs on materials and resources for teaching and for bible classes.


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