What to Expect From These Materials
Can you learn English using these materials alone? No, no 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 problem is obvious, 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 Web that will really cement this knowledge.
Free ESL Materials For Kids
Here are some great places to find free ESL materials for kids. Some of these sites require registration or even membership to take advantage of everything they have to offer, however.
- TeachChildrenESL is a great site with a myriad of free materials and activities.
- The ESL Lounge offers lesson plans, printables, games and other materials and information.
- ESL Monkeys offers lesson plans and activities for all ages.
- 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 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. This is a very useful site.
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.