Course curriculum

  • 1

    Problems #1 and #2 I don't cover as much as I want and the students don't make enough progress

    • Coursebooks Intro

    • Some housekeeping ... and choosing your coursebook

    • Assessing how much time you have for the coursebook

    • Problem #1: I don't cover as much as I want

    • Completing the coursebook = completing the level

    • Assessing content and level of your coursebook

    • Language and learning

    • Problem #2: students don't make the progress I want

    • Task and Discussion points

  • 2

    Problems #3 and #4: underplanning and overplanning

    • The desire for photocopies and preparation: care and guilt

    • Some further issues with coursebooks and two common designs

    • Two mindsets and adding value

    • Task and Discussion points

  • 3

    Problems #5, #6 and #7: not enough speaking, we can't cover enough grammar and students don't talk

    • Intro and outline: adding and supporting speaking

    • Questions about speaking

    • Recognising all the opportunities for speaking and the affordances they give

    • Exploiting affordances and covering grammar

    • From planning to classroom practice

    • Problem #7: The speaking task fails

    • Task and Discussion points

  • 4

    Problems #8 and #9 students don't don't know enough vocabulary and they don't use what I teach!

    • Supporting speaking through vocabulary: Introduction and outline

    • My vocabulary teaching

    • The Problem of Lexical Sets

    • Supporting speaking: choosing the right words

    • Plan better: examples models and patterns

    • Thinking about procedure and questions for vocabulary tasks

    • Plan better questions: exploring co-text

    • Plan better questions: exploring other aspects of word knowledge

    • Adding speaking: personal questions based on vocab

    • Tasks and points for discussion

  • 5

    Problem #10: the text is boring

    • Intro and outline: Texts and purpose

    • Plan smarter: assessing the texts in a coursebook

    • Plan better: Increase interest and engagement through speaking tasks

    • Plan quicker: simple tasks to focus on language

    • Plan better: integrating new tasks with the coursebook

    • Task and points for discussion

  • 6

    Problems #11 and #12: students forgetting and the lack of recycling

    • Intro and outline: methodology and recycling

    • Revision: you, your book and your students' notes

    • Making use of all the coursebook support

    • Making use of the wordlist and supporting homework

    • Revision and making use of students' notes

    • Task and points for discussion

  • 7

    Planning a unit

    • Intro and outline: A final word on grammar

    • Task: planning a unit from Outcomes

    • Following a unit from Outcomes

  • 8

    Links and Feedback

    • Additional reading and links

    • Feedback

  • Free webinar

    Every month we run webinars on teacher development and aspects of language and culture. With this course, you can choose one to participate in for free. See what we have to offer at

  • Facebook group and follow-up sessions

    Anyone who does one of our online courses will get access to our closed teacher development facebook group where you can discuss and share you ideas with colleagues. We also run meet-ups there times a year where you can talk to other participants, ask your tutor questions and share post-course experiences.

  • Exclusive offers

    For anyone who completes a course with us you will get a certificate of success as well as access to exclusive offers on future courses, webinars and products from Lexical Lab.


5 star rating

Unbeatable Value

Jonathan Ellis

This course provides a valuable service to EFL teachers. It makes us think beyond the idea that a textbook is a complete, instruction manual for teachers to ...

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This course provides a valuable service to EFL teachers. It makes us think beyond the idea that a textbook is a complete, instruction manual for teachers to be followed activity by activity, page by page. It highlights the problems that come with this approach, an example being 'my students get through the material too quickly or not quickly enough'. It offers many suggestions to the teacher who wants a new approach, many of which can be tried out immediately, with a bit of preparation, and usually no 'technology requirements'. An example is to write questions that 'open' speaking by the students rather than restrict it. For example, 'do you know anyone who's really into unusual hobbies' as opposed to 'do you like stamp collecting'. The course is pretty flexible in that you can move backwards and forwards, revisit parts, take each set task as a substantial assignment or just something to think about. I set myself the minimum requirement of taking notes, which helped a great deal. Just by doing this, I really noticed a difference in my level of interest, enthusiasm and confidence towards using a textbook. I've done lots of online courses which consist of content, videos, questions/assignments. A key difference in this one was the presence of Andrew and his input throughout the course. Not only did I learn more, but I actually looked forward to to the next part. I would recommend this course to every EFL teacher, regardless of level of experience, on the assumption that we all have some involvement with textbooks and understand the need for preparation. I will continue to work on this course and encourage you to do it!

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