Adapting authentic materials (with specific IELTS sub-skills in mind) tends to be SUPER engaging for IELTS students.

The reason is that IELTS is often somewhat of a (scary) burden on your students’ minds…

A hurdle they have to overcome, to unlock their own future in another country, or at a university… 

So what if you used their OWN personal interests (or even academic field) to help them prepare for the exam?

For example, if you have a learner who loves, say, WWII history, why not get them to

• READ an article about it and summarize it in SPEAKING or WRITING

• WRITE (e.g. an opinion, for and against or discursive) essay about it

• watch/LISTEN to a video on YouTube related to the topic and TELL you the ‘what-when-where-why-who-how’ of it to start a discussion?

Using authentic sources of their own interests them some initial, gives them practice of some of the SUB-SKILLS they struggle with…

…THROUGH immediately engaging them with a topic they are already passionate about, which, in my experience tends to provide an AMAZING, slightly less painful 😀 intro to IELTS…

What topics are your IELTS learners interested in? Do you know their interests at all? Have you experimented exploiting these?

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Hi. I’m Fatime. I’m an IELTS Teacher Trainer, helping CELTA-qualified English language teachers become better at teaching SKILLS, as opposed to just testing them. 

Check out my courses here:

How to Teach IELTS Listening:

How to Teach IELTS Reading:

How to Teach IELTS Writing:

How to Teach IELTS Speaking: