Six Free ESL Lesson Plans to Get your Students Speaking!

One of the most difficult things to get your adult ESL students to do is to speak out loud. In fact, adult ESL students often mention that speaking is the hardest of the four core skills. Surely you’ve noticed that sometimes your students have strong grammar skills but their speaking skills are weak. If so, have you tried offering them a dedicated speaking lesson? Speaking activities are a great way to assess your students’ progress, even in grammar-heavy language classes.  Off2Class has prepared six free ESL lesson plans to get your students speaking about real-world subjects that are relevant to everyone. Your business students, high school students and everyone in between will love practicing their conversation skills!

When to use speaking lesson plans

I love to incorporate these speaking activities at least once a month because my students get the opportunity to practice using the new vocabulary and grammar they’ve learned. Additionally, they are a great way to assess how much your students have grasped and what concepts to review with them. Most importantly,  my students appreciate a conversation lesson during busy times of the year because they don’t have the energy for grammar-heavy lessons. No matter what, even in the most traditional ESL classrooms, speaking lessons are important. So, why not give these lessons a try? Even your shyest students will find them entertaining!

Speaking lesson plans at a glance

The following lesson plans promote fluency at a range of levels. For beginners, you can start with Life in the City or My Family. These lesson plans use plenty of images which allow  you to ask thoughtful follow-up questions to test your students’ skills. For advanced students, focus on Facebook and Social Media, Fears and Phobias or Working Remotely and Online – these lesson plans will challenge your students to think and debate. In any case, I encourage you to familiarize yourself with your students’ cultural backgrounds so you can confirm that the lesson material is not offensive or inappropriate.

Life in the City:

Life in the City is designed for beginner students and uses photos to prompt discussion about where they live, work, study and have fun. By the end of the lesson, students will complete a reading activity and deliver a narrative on their own.

Download the lesson plan on Life in the City here:

My Family

This lesson will help you gauge your students’ vocabulary skills when discussing family. You should encourage students to use the present simple tense to talk about family structure and relationships. You can use this lesson plan to review how to talk about age too. Better yet, this lesson plan is great to review with upper-level students.

Download the lesson plan on My Family here:


Facebook and Social Media

This lesson plan on the topic of social media is designed for higher-level students. When teaching this lesson, encourage students to think, share, and debate using the images and questions provided.

Download the lesson plan on Facebook and Social Media here:


Fears and Phobias

This lesson plan is designed for upper-intermediate students and introduces new vocabulary related to fears and phobias. You should prompt students to talk about what scares them using the questions and vocabulary provided. 

Download the lesson plan on Fears and Phobias here:

Working Remotely and Online

This lesson plan was designed for upper-intermediate students, and it is especially relevant to our world today. It features new vocabulary and reading exercises that put the vocabulary into a clear context.  You can prompt students to discuss and debate using the pictures, questions and vocabulary provided. 

Download the lesson plan on Working Remote and Online here:

Urban Social Issues

This advanced lesson plan introduces vocabulary related to pollution, poverty and other issues found in urban settings. It provides plenty of thought-provoking questions to get your students talking and engaged with the material.

speaking ESL lesson plans

Download our lesson plan on Urban Social Issues here:

After your speaking lesson

After using these free ESL speaking lesson plans, we guarantee your students will want to talk more because they will feel more confident than ever. As a bonus, these Speaking lesson plans feature helpful teacher notes and homework assignments available only with your FREE teacher account. After you sign up, don’t forget to check out the Lesson Library too! All of Off2Class’s lesson plans are ready-to-teach and can be used in online and screen-enabled in-person classes. Leave the hard work to us because Off2Class strives to make teaching English easier than ever!

Most importantly, if you found these lesson plans helpful, share them and comment below. We love to hear questions, thoughts and ideas from teachers like you!


20 Comments

  • Alannak Zohra says:

    February 8, 2021 at 7:18 pm

    Thanks a lot for sharing. They are interesting

    • Kris Jagasia says:

      February 13, 2021 at 4:31 pm

      Hi Alannak, glad you’re enjoying them, where are you teaching?

  • Amanda says:

    February 24, 2021 at 9:53 am

    Thank you for these, they look really useful. Do you have any downloads for higher, say advanced levels?

    • Chris says:

      March 9, 2021 at 6:26 am

      Hi Amanda, yes, we’re still in the process of uploading them all. Glad you like them so far!

  • Sevinç Uçar says:

    February 28, 2021 at 9:25 am

    Thank you so much. Ít’s really helpful. 🙏

    • Chris says:

      March 9, 2021 at 6:26 am

      Great to hear!

  • Gabriela Rojas says:

    March 10, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    THANK YOU OFF2CLASS!!! I should invent new words to thank you enough… Thank you!

    • Chris says:

      March 14, 2021 at 4:50 am

      Thank you is enough, Gabriela! We’re so glad you’re enjoying the resources.

  • Sonia says:

    March 11, 2021 at 12:55 pm

    These lesson plans are a brilliant time and life saver… Thank you so much
    You guys ROCK !!

    • Chris says:

      March 14, 2021 at 4:48 am

      So glad they’re helping you, Sonia!

  • Sylvia Hooks says:

    March 19, 2021 at 12:56 am

    Thank you! You guys are so sweet and creative! So glad I found you.

    • Chris says:

      March 19, 2021 at 6:23 pm

      Thanks so much Sylvia, we’re glad you found us too!

  • Liz says:

    March 29, 2021 at 10:30 am

    I will definitely use these! Thank you!

    • Chris says:

      April 1, 2021 at 1:24 pm

      Hope you like them, Liz!

  • linda says:

    July 11, 2021 at 8:58 pm

    this is extremely helpful, I’m a trainee teacher and this materials honestly strives the goals of OFF2CLASS. I can focus more on the class than the time needed to prepare. THANK YOU SO MUCH.

    • Regan says:

      July 13, 2021 at 1:43 pm

      Hello Linda! We are so glad to hear this. Happy teaching!

  • Marcia says:

    July 15, 2021 at 7:28 am

    Thank you! It is much appreciated.

    • Regan says:

      July 15, 2021 at 3:37 pm

      You’re so welcome! What lessons have you most enjoyed teacher so far?

  • LELA LAZISHVILI says:

    July 27, 2021 at 8:23 am

    Thank you for help and sharing!

    • Regan says:

      July 28, 2021 at 9:26 pm

      It’s a pleasure to hear that these lessons are helpful. Do you have a favorite one to teach?

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