The Teddy Bear Song

The Teddy Bear Song

Here is lovely chant that works well with very young children. Ask the children to bring to class their own teddy bear or cuddly toy to do the song with ( have a few extras in case some children forget)  

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear,

Turn around (turn around)

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear,

Touch the ground (touch the ground)

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear,

Tie your shoe (hit your shoe)

Teddy Bear, Teddy Bear,

How old are you?

1-2-3-4 ………


The magic chair

The magic chair



1.            Put a chair in the centre of a circle of children. 

2.          Tell the children that it is hot, sticky, covered with paint or glue, cold, soft, has a pin on it, is broken, very comfortable etc. 

3.          Any child who wants to gets up and sits on the chair. They act out the situation. Eg. If it is hot they sit down and jump up screaming “Ow!”.










Musical Clothes


Musical Clothes

A great revision game for clothes and accessories

You’ll need your costume bag for this game. If you don’t yet have a costume and prop box ask parents to bring in the following items:

  • hats, gloves, and scarves
  • coats and old shoes
  • shirts,  t-shirts
  • Plastic glasses, moustaches, wigs etc

How to play

The children stand in a circle, the music starts – and the bag needs to be passed round the circle. When the music stops, the child holding the bag has to take something out, say what it is and put it on.

The game continues until all the items have been used. The winner is the person wearing the most clothes. You can either put some pop music on and let the children dance in their new outfits


Encourage everyone to find a new way of walking, talking and gesturing using their costumes and props and introduce yourselves to each other in English using your character s voice.


Practicing simple ESl introductions,


–          Hello, what’s your name?

–          My name is….

–          How are you?

–          I’m wonderful!!!

–          How old are you?

–          I’m 100!!


can be made so much more fun by dressing  up  and putting on a silly voice and you will find that even the shyest of children will feel less inhibited to speak as they are able to hide behind another character


Happy teaching and have a great weekend



Pass on the Mime Message

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Pass on the Mime Message


You will need: Several simple sentences written on cards.


          It’s cold outside

          I have a sandwich for lunch

          I like to ride my bike


Have the group stand in a line facing the opposite direction to you. You tap the first child on the shoulder who turns around and you give him/her the message using only gestures. This player then taps the second child on the shoulder, who turns around , and passes on the message as he/she understands it. Stop the game at a certain point and ask the player whose turn it is if he/she can explain the message vocally without enacting it. Has the message been passed on correctly?


This Esl drama game is great fun for older children who are already able to form simple sentences. It encourages creativity and stimulates the imagination. To make the game easier for younger children, instead of sentences use illustrated flash cards to show the first child e.g a bicycle, horse, sandwich, rain.


Tips on Classroom Management

Tips on classroom management

When I first started out teaching children I never bothered explaining any ground rules naively thinking that my bubbly personality and incredibly interactive ESL drama games could win over even the most undisciplined child …little did I know!!


After one very boisterous 7 year old created havoc in one of my lessons, ruining the enjoyment of others and almost giving me a nervous breakdown, I soon started thinking of better ways I could manage myself and my class.


Classroom ground rules are extremely useful when using ESL Drama especially when many children are up and moving around together. They really can make a huge difference to the whole atmosphere of the lesson, prevent any child getting over excited and losing focus or maybe even unintentionally harming another child , they encourage group collaboration and above all give you more control of each exercise without struggling to be heard.


I learned the hard way….I recommend you avoid it!!


It is important for the children to understand that drama is of enormous fun for everyone but it is structured fun.

Just as football is more fun if everyone follows the rules, ESL Drama is more fun if everyone follows the rules.


Here are a few initial suggestions for classroom rules:


1.      Try to go to the bathroom before the lesson. (obvious one but , when you’re in the middle of a group or pair activity it can become an extra disruption with children trotting off to the bathroom – although it often can’t be avoidedJ)


2.      Always listen carefully and follow the rules of any game or activity.


3.      When you hear the drum beat “freeze”  (this one I’ve found very useful in getting the whole class focused and listening in an instant. I personally use a drum but you can also use another loud instrument or even a whistle. When you beat the drum once the children  stop whatever they’re doing and “freeze” like ice statues which children love! 2 drum beats indicates the children to quickly and silently form a circle. )


4.      Always raise your hand, and wait to be invited before speaking (avoids unnecessary noise and keeps children focused and encourages listening and respecting others children’s’ opinions)  



The following rules are can be added on for older children  7-10 year olds:


5.      NEVER, EVER intentionally hurt someone else. This means no hitting or pushing but it also means no name-calling or teasing. A Drama lesson can only work if everyone feels safe.

6.      Everyone is responsible for his own actions. Just because someone else does something wrong does not give you permission to make things worse by doing the same thing. “He did it, too,” is never an excuse.


7.      If you don’t want to play …then sit and watch. (With ESL Drama occasionally some children will react differently to a particular game or activity. Try never to force anyone to participate especially if you see they are uncomfortable about joining in as this could block their spontaneity and fun with other games. With my private groups I suggest that children may sit at the side and watch quietly (without disrupting the rest of the class) if they really do not want join in a game. Saying this I very rarely see anyone taking up the offer.)


In one of my next tip posts I will be talking about some great ways of motivating your children using “rewards” …with no chocolate treats anywhere to be seenJ


Happy teaching