How to Teach English Speaking to Adults

Teaching English speaking as a foreign language is no easy task, and it can quickly become overwhelming and frustrating work when dealing with this demographic. This article will share with you a few tips to help boost your confidence and how to teach English speaking to adults.

If you’re an experienced English teacher, however, then teaching adults doesn’t have to be quite as daunting and even a little stress-free. Make the classroom more enjoyable for yourself and your students. Remember, improving self-esteem is one of the best ways to enhance students’ skills.


With adult English learners, less is definitely more. There’s no need to feel as if they need to learn English speaking every word they’ve ever heard or every topic they can think of; instead, focus on providing them with quality instruction with relevance. Basic English speaking is enough.

 For example, if you teach them how to drive a car, don’t feel the need to tell them how to find a gas station on their way home from school. Instead, teach them about the parts of the car and how they work together.


The best way for an adult English learner to learn English conversation is by using a system. This can be done in a number of ways, but for beginners, we recommend using what’s called “the SRS method.” This means that you’ll work with their weaknesses (commonly speaking) and highlight those words that they’ve already learned. 

By teaching them systems, you’ll make it easier for them to remember. Along with this method, it’s essential to communicate the new words with your students clearly. For example, if they’re learning how to ask a person how much they weigh, tell them, “How much do you weigh?”.


If you find that your adult learners have little to no computer experience, then consider making use of technology such as Skype or other telephone-based video sharing services. 

It’s essential for you to be available for any questions or difficulties that may arise during their classes, and there are also many advantages to using videos, such as seeing potentially missed words or grammatically incorrect sentences.


One of the most important things to do when first meeting a new student is to understand their speaking level. This can be done by asking them to speak English using a simple say-the-sentence test. 

By giving them a sentence and requiring them to whisper it and then speak it, you will be able to gauge where they are at with their pronunciation in English talking, grammar, etc.

You’ll want to look for significant mistakes such as wrong verb tenses and missing words. An excellent way to do this is by asking a student to say their name and then asking them to repeat it.


You may have noticed that there are many schools that offer a “semi-final” class for adults who have already completed the coursework but need more practice. 

It’s essential to develop your own system for handling such classes, and one idea you can try is asking them to say the English words in their current lesson in the same order as we teach them.

Another method is to incorporate questions into your lessons. As an example, you could ask a student, “What do you think this sentence means?” and have them explain to you what they think it means. You can also choose different words each week using this approach, such as “Do we have time?” or “How fast are we going?”.


English experienced adults likely had a much higher level of English skills when they were students and will therefore be more confident in their ability to learn the language again. This can help boost self-esteem and encourage them to do their very best when learning English.


Remember to speak in English as much as possible as this will help your students to improve their English skills and will make you feel more comfortable. And more importantly, it will make them feel more comfortable learning.


There are many advantages to teaching in groups, especially those that are composed of adults and ESL learners. For example, it’s always easier to lead a group because you can get their attention and direct them towards specific tasks. 

You can also use group activities such as games or assignments to motivate them, which helps with self-esteem and confidence. You can also see how they interact with other people, and by using this information, you can better understand their personality, helping you to be a better teacher.


It’s important to realize that timing can be critical when working in the ESL classroom. If you end up rushing your students through the lesson or moving on to the next topic too quickly, they’ll think of you as impatient and unhappy with them. Finding the right timing for your students is a sure-fire way to improve their reading skills and learning experience and boost self-esteem.

The Final Word

If you want to improve your English teaching skills and boost your self-esteem as a fluent English teacher, then adult ESL classes are an excellent choice for you. Whether you’re looking for a more hands-on teaching experience or prefer more classroom independence, these classes provide the training and teaching techniques that will help you excel in the classroom. With Classplus you can get your own app and reach out to larger number of students across the country.  

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