ESL Prepositions

All about ESL Prepositions - Teach English in Japan

by Aarti Thomas

Teaching all about prepositions to ESL students can be difficult as prepositions are not only vocabulary words but more of a concept. With the help of these tips, teaching prepositions in ESL/EFL is made much easier.

1. Use the help of flash cards by illustrating them with different prepositions. Then use these cards to play bingo, memory match, or any other favorite game.

2. It’s easier to learn the use, and understand prepositions by using opposites of prepositions like ‘in and out’, ‘up and down’.

Students find it even more challenging if you show a card with a preposition and ask them to say its opposite as their first reaction is to say what is on the card.

3. Have your students sit in a circle, and after giving each student a toy, practice using prepositions by having them place the animal in different places like ‘in front’ of them or ‘on their back’.

Progressively, you could have each student place a toy somewhere in the classroom like ‘in front of the window’ or ‘on the table’. As the students grow comfortable using prepositions, you could have them instruct another student where to place their animals. The kids especially love this kind of TPR lesson.

*TPR=James Asher`s Total Physical Response method of teaching English

4. Directing students around the room also helps them learn more about using ESL prepositions. After sending everyone next to the door, you could tell them to sit on the floor.

5. Why not create an obstacle course in your class using tables, chairs and anything else in the classroom to help your students understand prepositions?

Your students will definitely enjoy learning the use of prepositions by doing physical activities like being told to crawl under the table or perhaps run round the table thrice.

These are only some ideas you could consider using to help your students learn about prepositions. Use your imagination and you will be able to teach all about prepositions while your students enjoy themselves.

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