There is little doubt that the Internet is a great place to find materials for ESL learners of all ages, but this is especially true when it comes to free ESL materials for kids. There are a variety of websites where you can find online activities, games, downloadable worksheets, songs and other things to help kids learn English.
Free ESL Materials for Kids
Classroom instruction and immersive experiences are important to the
process of learning a language; but, so are any additional exercises the child can do to solidify the concepts learned in class.
Help for the Rough Spots
You cannot learn English by solely using ESL materials any more than you can learn Aikido just from watching training videos. These materials are supplemental and should not be used in place of proper instruction. They are here to help your child over rough spots, nothing more.
For example, learning the past tense of verbs can be very challenging:
- Because of the fact that 97% of verbs add an '-ed' to the end in order to indicate past tense, students are tempted to use this ending with all English verbs.
- The remaining 3% of the verbs are irregular and that includes the ten most frequently used verbs: do, go, say, can, will, see, take, get, be and have.
Class time will introduce the student to these and other irregular verbs, but it is regular practice at home with the supplemental materials you can find on the Internet that will really cement this knowledge.
Sourcing ESL Materials for Students
Here are some great places to find free materials to help the ESL student. Some of these sites provide free materials and others may require registration or even membership to take advantage of everything they have to offer:
- ESL-Lounge.com offers lesson plans, printables, games and other materials and information.
- ESL Galaxy is another site that offers a wide range of materials that are suitable for all ages. The children's section is particularly good with many seasonal activities.
- Download ESL takes a slightly different direction with the inclusion of video and audio materials. This site does require a subscription; but, there are some interesting free materials for you to try out.
- ESL-Kids.com offers printables, games, study materials and songs and lesson plans. They also offer an extensive links library to expand on the materials you are using.
A Final Thought
The fact is that all of these sites have a great deal of highly useful, fun and interesting things to offer, but they will not teach your child English by themselves. You will need the services of an instructor to help them through the material so that they learn as much as possible as quickly as possible and so they do so correctly. Free ESL materials, whether for kids or adults, can only reinforce what the student learns in the classroom.