Six Must-Have ESL Writing Activities

Six ESL Writing Activities

Looking for fresh ideas for the writing class (and conversation class)?

Here are six lesson ideas that help students learn English and build writing skills.

Writing Proficiency

Two activities that improve accuracy are here. The first works on articles and is good for all skill levels. The second activity, suitable for intermediate+, teaches students to write appositives.

Fluency Activities

Three easy to implement activities to help students read, write and speak faster.

Get the Details

A pair work conversation activity with a writing component. One student reads a short story. Another asks questions to learn the details. It’s a remarkably simple, but challenging, exercise that forces students to think about their questions. This inquiry-based activity helps students develop a range of skills – reading, questioning, listening and critical thinking.

Quick Vocab Games

Got a gap to fill? These three vocabulary exercises work great when you need a sponge activity that fosters language learning.

Six Thinking Hats

writing and speaking activity based on Edward De Bono’s ideas about multiple thinking perspectives? Why not? The core lesson starts by looking at a roll of candy from six perspectives. The lesson can easily be extended to more complex ideas.

Parallel Structure

A writing class without a lesson about parallel structure? Impossible, I say. So, here it is, a lesson, suitable for high beginners and up, to help students improve clarity, grammar and style.


Teach writing?

Get the ebook Teach Essential Writing Skills. Transform the quality of EFL student writing by focusing on four essential skills. Click here for details about the ebook that should be part of every writing teacher’s resource library.


Save time. Teach well.

Cut your lesson prep time with this 240-page collection of ESL resources that stimulate language learning and critical thinking: awesome pair work speaking activities, logic puzzles, trivia, word games and much more. Simplify your lesson planning because teaching should be a joy, not a chore.




Image Credit: Featured image by Jaime González. Its use complies with the owner’s creative commons licensing terms.

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