The ESOL Teaching Skills TaskBook (ETS TaskBook) is a professional development resource that has been created thanks to funding from Ako Aotearoa. It comprises 40 stand-alone tasks that focus on different aspects of teaching English to speakers of other languages. The ETS TaskBook is a flexible resource that allows schools to provide their teachers with practical professional development opportunities.

How can it be used?
A lesson or a series of lessons from the ETS TaskBook can be used in the following way:

  • a teacher working alone
  • a group of teachers working as a professional development discussion group
  • a senior teacher or academic manager wanting to lead a professional development seminar
  • an academic manager wanting to provide an individual teacher with some kind of targeted professional development support
  • a tutor working with pre-service teachers on a training or development course

Teachers and tutors who use the material should feel free to adapt the material so it is suitable for their context.

Who is it suitable for?
The ETS TaskBook is suitable for English language teachers in a variety of contexts. For pre-service or less experienced teachers, it may be a way of gaining a deeper understanding of ESOL teaching methodology. For more experienced teachers, it may act as a useful refresher and springboard for further study.

What does each lesson contain?

  • an introduction that outlines the focus of the lesson
  • a series of tasks with answer key
  • a reflection task
  • a practical, classroom-focused transfer task
  • suggestions for further reading and ways to develop

What does the ETS TaskBook contain?
The TaskBook is divided up into the following five units:

  1. Core issues in the learning context
  2. Micro skills of teaching ESOL
  3. Teaching skills-focused lessons
  4. Teaching language-focused lessons
  5. Materials and resources for teaching ESOL

See the Table of Contents and Resources to find a specific lesson.

What is a Teaching Log?
At the end of each lesson, there is a section with the heading Thinking about your teaching … This section poses a question about teaching in relation to the content of the lesson you have just studied. The section ends with a suggestion that you write down your ideas and thoughts in a Teaching Log. A Teaching Log is a kind of reflective diary in which you record your thoughts about teaching and learning. You can use a notebook or you might want to keep an electronic log. This can be something you do just for yourself. It can be interesting to go back and read your log at a later date to see how your thinking about teaching has evolved. Alternatively, you may want to share your Teaching Log with colleagues to gain the benefit of each other’s insights.

Who wrote ETS TaskBook?
ETS TaskBook was produced by teacher trainers at Languages International in Auckland, New Zealand. The lessons were written by Craig Thaine and edited by Rebecca Russell, Michael Wharton and Amanda French. The layout was created by Simon Todd and Michael Wharton.

Languages International would like to acknowledge and thank Ako Aotearoa for their generous support in helping to create the ETS TaskBook.

The following institutions and people provided useful feedback on lessons:
Heather Richards from AUT University School of Languages; Gareth Williams from the Christchurch College of English; Chris Chaplin from Taupo Language and Outdoor Education Centre; Supriya Darp and Mark Thomson from Dynaspeak.