Chatter Series

The Chatter series covers a range of topics, spanning several levels, with a variety of engaging questions and activities.  Chatter presentations focus on a topic, and are meant to enhance vocabulary and fluency regarding the topic. Each class is different from the next, and the activities within each presentation are structured so that teachers and students will be able to grasp and follow them easily.


The following guidelines are meant to give you a general overview on how to conduct a class using this PowerPoint presentation. This guide is intentionally general, as ESL students and classes around the world have a range of needs and strengths, and different teachers have different styles.


Please be aware that these are the guidelines that I use in my classes, and they work for me. However, as you may have a different teaching style, take the guidelines with a grain of salt, and experiment with how to present the information within the presentation to make it fit your teaching style.


As always, if you like this presentation, and have a great class, please refrain from sharing this presentation with your colleagues, and share a link to instead. This is my livelihood, after all. Have a great class!    


Target Levels

Target Audience

Class Duration

Beginner – Advanced

Late Teen – Adult

55 Minutes


General Tips

  • The Chatter series is less standardized than the other series I develop. As such, I recommend taking a little extra time to go over the presentations, and consider how you would present the information and activities presented within.
  • The pictures within each presentation were chosen to help students better guess the meaning of new vocabulary, or better grasp the point of activities and discussion questions. I recommend familiarizing yourself with the pictures, and thinking about how you can use them to highlight points or give examples.
  • I’ve found that dividing students into groups of 3-5 each works best. If there are more than that, some students may not have a chance to speak, or may try to blend in and not speak out. Conversely, if there are only two students, they may blaze through the activities too quickly.
  • It’s also best practice to mix groups regarding levels and personalities. If you mix more outspoken students together with shyer students, and then give the outspoken students leadership roles within the groups, they will encourage the shyer students to speak, rather than remaining quiet the entire class. This also works when mixing high- and low-level ESL students. By giving stronger, or outspoken, students leadership roles, they get to practice and mentor, and the other students also will get more opportunities to speak out.
  • Be flexible with your time. You don’t have to finish the presentation in one class, or at all. If you plan to allow 15 minutes for one activity, but students seem really engaged with the activity and don’t show signs of slowing down after 15 minutes, then don’t stop them. The point of the class is to get the students speaking and practicing, so give them additional time if they are doing that. Conversely, if the students are slowing down and becoming quiet after 10 minutes, jump in and expand on the activity, or move on.
  • While the presentations were developed for 55-minute classes, some of them can be stretched over two classes. It really depends on your students, and how much time they are spending on each activity or discussion question.
  • If vocabulary or discussion question slides are included, you can send them out to your students one or two days before class. This will allow them to prepare, and have a general idea about what to expect in the class. If you do not engage with your students digitally outside of class, then you can print out the aforementioned slides and distribute them a day before.
  • During the class, don’t get too bogged down on specific words and phrases. Paraphrase when needed, and encourage students to move on. When they focus on small details, they end up having less time to actually practice speaking.


Common Sections in the Chatter Series

Note: Not all mentioned sections are included in all presentations. In addition, due to the nature of the Chatter series, there are a wide range of activities from presentation to presentation. Please remember to take some time before your class to consider how you wish to proceed with the activities, and how to present them to your class.



General Guidelines


1.      Introduce the topic.

2.      Ask the students what they think it means.

3.      Explain any difficult vocabulary included in the topic title.


1.      Ask the students to repeat after you.

2.      Read through the vocabulary, one-by-one.

3.      Repeat any difficult words two or three times.

4.      Ask the students to work in groups to discuss what they think each word means.

5.      After allowing the students 2-3 minutes to discuss the vocabulary, elicit from them briefly what they think each means, and explain as needed.

Discussion Questions

1.      Allow the students to spend 1-3 minutes discussing each question.

2.      Have a few students share their ideas for each question before moving on to the next one.


1.      Reveal the quiz questions.

2.      Have the students work together for 1-2 minutes to choose the right answers.

3.      Elicit the answers, one by one, from random students.

4.      Reveal the answers.

Extension Questions

1.      Conduct these as you would the discussion questions at the beginning of the class.


If you find any linguistic error in a presentation, please report it to


Please include the following:

  • Presentation title
  • Slide # of error
  • Error information


Once the error is corrected, an updated version of the presentation will be sent to you.