How to give an address

Low-resource ESL lesson plan
Adult Beginner
Low-resource ESL lesson plan
New to English
Low-resource ESL lesson plan
60 min
Low-resource ESL lesson plan
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This lesson focuses on teaching students how to accurately write and describe the various components of an address in English. Mastering this skill will aid students in essential tasks such as filling out forms and navigating their surroundings.

We start with a few warmer activities that build on and complement the material already covered in the course. For those looking for visual teaching aids, we provide notes on suggested boardwork to assist in breaking down the elements of an address. Following this, the lesson offers several ESL classroom activities in which students get the opportunity to practice asking for and giving different parts of an address in a controlled setting. We also include a suggested homework task to encourage further study of the target language. To end the lesson on a high note, we finish with an interactive classroom game.

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Low-resource ESL classroom game

Giving personal information

The students have to provide full-sentence answers to some interview questions.

If you have completed all of the lessons on this course so far, the students should now be able to produce a full-sentence response to the following questions:

  1. What is your name?
  2. Where are you from?
  3. How old are you?
  4. What do you do?

For larger groups, split the students into pairs and have them perform the interviews. You may need to add the prompts namefromage and occupation to the board. Demo this with a student before they start and monitor throughout for the correct responses and pronunciation.

Low-resource ESL classroom game

ESL counting circle

The students will practise numbers by counting in a circle to reach as high a number as possible without making a mistake.

Start by arranging the group into a circle. The students will then take turns, saying the next number in the sequence. If they make an error, we start over. The mistakes counted could be repetition, waiting too long, or another student shouting out the correct answer.

Depending on how the group is doing, you can now add the following modifications to this activity to make things more challenging:

  1. Count odd numbers only
  2. Even numbers only
  3. Count backwards from a specified number


Classroom activities

Low-resource ESL lesson plan

Use of the board

The students learn how to write and describe the different parts of an address in English.

Start by adding the example addresses to the board. Depending on how much time you have, you may only want to cover one of these.

Next, attempt to elicit as many of the labels as possible by pointing and saying "What's this?" (You may need to pre-teach this query). You should be able to elicit name and country, the others you will have to teach. Record any new vocabulary on the board as you go, along with a translation if you can.

Before you begin, should mark off a section of the whiteboard and title it "Vocabulary". Encourage your students to add any words in this section to their vocabulary notebooks after the lesson.

Students at this level will most likely be unfamiliar with terms like streettowncity or postcode. You should anticipate this and research L1 translations as preparation for this lesson if you don't have a translator available.

EFL - ESL board work activity for adult beginners | Teaching addresses

Low-resource ESL activity

Pair-work speaking

For this role-play speaking activity, the students will attempt to read an address in response to a query.

If you have done the board work for this lesson, you can leave the addresses on the board. If not, add the example addresses. Next, add the sample dialogue that is also in the board work.

The students are going to use this to simulate a role-play situation in which they have to give an address. For this activity, they will use the examples on the board.

Before they begin, demo the activity with another student by encouraging them to ask you for your address. You should then respond by reading from the board.

Finally split the group into pairs and have them take turns practising the dialogue. Monitor them throughout and correct any pronunciation mistakes that pop up.

Low-resource ESL activity idea

False address

For this writing activity, the students have to prepare a fictional address that they will use for the next exercise.

Tell the students that they now have to invent their own address. This address can be in any location in the world. They will use this to answer questions from their partner later.

If available, let the students use smartphones to research the English spellings of notable countries and cities. If not, encourage them to ask you for examples, which you can add to the board. Failing that, add examples of some countries and cities to the board, along with a few made-up street names. It may also help to place images next to these.

Low-resource ESL activity idea

Role-play: Giving a fictional address

The students now have to extract the fictional addresses from their partner in this pair-work speaking activity.

Point to the example dialogue from the first activity. If it is not on the board, you may want to add it again.

Student 1: What's your ____?
Student 2: It's _____?

Before they begin, demonstrate with another student how they'll use it to get specific information from their partner.

Teacher: What's your town?
Student: It's Edinburgh.
Teacher: Can you repeat that please?
Student: It's Edinburgh.
Teacher: Can you spell that?
Student: Yes, E-D...

Next, divide the group into pairs and have them take turns extracting the address from a partner. Make the students aware that their primary aim is to write down their partner's address accurately.

When finished, they should compare what they've written with what they recorded.

Low-resource ESL lesson plan

Suggested homework

The students have to learn their fictional addresses. 

Our suggested homework for this lesson is to have the students learn their fictional addresses so that we can have them produce this information as part of a revision/warmer activity for the next few weeks.

Classroom games

Low-resource ESL classroom game

Stopwatch challenge

Players have to dictate a very long combination of letters and numbers to a teammate who must record it on the board.

This game works just as well with teams of two as it does when splitting the group into two. Choose a team size that you think best suits your class while paying attention to the amount of time you have left.

For each round, you will write down a ridiculously long postcode of 10 - 15 characters and hand it to one member of a team. That team must then nominate someone to record the postcode on the board.

When ready, the player holding the written postcode must dictate it to their teammate must write it down correctly on the board. Set a stopwatch to record the time and add it to the board at the end. The team with the quickest time, or combination of times (if you play more than one round) is crowned the winner at the end.