Need some new ideas for teachers? Or, an ESL news article to start your lesson planning with? Maybe you’re teaching online these days and are looking for some resources. Then you’re most certainly in the right place. Keep on reading for my go-to sources for ESL articles.
ESL News Articles: Top 10 Online Resources
I’m all about using news articles in my classes instead of readings from the textbook. The stuff from the textbook is often dry, and it’s certainly not related to the things happening around the world.
But the problem with news articles is that they’re often too difficult, even for intermediate students. And that’s where ESL News Articles come in. They usually take the real newspaper articles, grade the language into different levels and the result is something you can easily use in your classes. They’re also a great resource for teaching English online.
Here are a few of my go-to sites for ESL news articles to make your teaching life easier. The best news? They’re all free and mostly well-organized. So, you should be able to find the ESL newspaper article you need in just a few minutes. Who doesn’t like to save time when planning lessons, right?
#1: Breaking News English for ESL Students
This should be your first stop for ESL news articles. It’s an extremely comprehensive site with a ton of material on it. You could probably use Breaking News English solely for the rest of your teaching life in fact.
Science, music, politics, pop culture, people, lifestyle, sports—there’s a bit of everything, similar to how a real newspaper is.
My favourite thing is that there are different levels to each article, making it really easy to use the same lesson for different classes. There is listening practice, help with vocabulary words, comprehension questions, speaking and conversation activities and more. There are a ton of exercises in general, and actually and more than you’d ever want to use in a single class.
However, some of the articles can be quite long so keep this in mind if you don’t want to spend the entire class reading, and not discussing the article. This part often takes longer than you might think.
Sounds like exactly what you need? There’s a lot of good information about the most recent news in the world. You can find them here: Breaking News English.
Oh yeah, and if you have a student that is very motivated to study this kind of thing on their own, this is also a good site to refer them to.
Quick Tip for Using Breaking News English
While you can, of course, choose the trending news articles from this site, I generally prefer to find the move “evergreen ones” that can be used by students in any country.
Then, I design a lesson surrounding the article and keep it in my Google Drive. In the future, when I have a new class or private teaching student, I have a bunch of ready-made lessons at my fingertips. I just take a few minutes to adapt the lesson to their focus (speaking, reading, etc.) and level. It’s a super simple way to make your lesson planning easier and quicker.
#2: News in Levels
This website is kind of the much simpler version of Breaking News English. I sometimes find Breaking News English is a vortex that ends up sucking up way too much of my time. If you are in a time crunch and need something in a pinch, this site is probably a better choice.
The articles are simple, short, basic and you won’t spend all day searching for that perfect one! The ones I’ve tried? All good and this site has never let me down. Foreign teachers love this site and I generally find that the way they plan a lesson is quite similar to mine.
Check out their news articles for ESL here: News in Levels.
#3: BBC Learning English
Another go-to source for ESL news topics for adults is the BBC. They have some excellent videos about current events that you can see if your class topic relates to. The best part about these videos is that they contain come great content, but that the language (grammar and vocabulary) isn’t that difficult.
The result? You’ll have things to talk about that come up in this video, but your students won’t be struggling the whole time to understand the content. That’s certainly some ESL teaching gold, right? I certainly think so!
Here is one example about veganism:
#4: VOA Learning English
This is a nice looking site with a ton of media, including some sweet videos. It’s great to send learners to for some extra practice outside of class. And there’s also lots of stuff you can use in your classes as well. It is USA focused so keep that in mind when using or recommending it.
Interested in this resource for ESL students? You can see the articles here: VOA Learning English.
#5: British Council-Teens + British Council-Adults
Do you teach English to teenagers? Then this might be your go-go resource.
The British Council does some great work in putting out excellent resources for ESL and EFL students. Thank you! The site is very useful but they often don’t have the most up to date ESL News Articles.
But, they’re still worth a look and it’s all very correct and proper!.
More details here:
#6: English Listening Rocks for ESL News Articles
A new site from Rob Whyte, a friend of mine from Korea and a Lonely Planet author! It’s really user friendly, easy to teach from, and has lots of interesting ESL news articles in different levels. The best part? It’s not just listening. It’s usually for getting your students to read, speak and write as well.
Check it out here: English Listening Rocks.
#7: One Stop English for ESL Current Events
This website puts out a new article lesson for ESL students once a month that’s sourced from the Guardian. They range from pre-intermediate to advanced and are truly lesson plans that you can print off and take to class with you. In particular, they choose topics that are general enough to be used in just about any country.
Take a look at their news articles for ESL students here: One Stop English.
#8: Simple English News
If you’re looking for source for ESLnews articles that’s a bit sleeker and cleaner than Breaking News English, then you’ll want to consider Simple English News. The site is well-organized into various categories so you should be able to find what you’re looking for pretty easily in just a few minutes. The lessons themselves are also easy to just take to class and use with almost no adaptations.
Check out their articles for English class here: Simple English News.
#9: Teaching Kids News
I love to use some simple news articles in my TEFL classes for kids. This website is one of my favourite sources for that. They not only have quite interesting topics for kids but they also adapt real news articles into simple and short enough ones. It’s some ESL current events awesome.
Have a look at these ESL news stories here: Teaching Kids News.
#10: News in Easy English Podcast
If you prefer to base your news for ESL students on listening instead of reading, then you’ll certainly want to consider this podcast that features simple English and easily digestible language chunks. Students can use these listening exercises for either homework or you could consider based an in-class lesson around one of them as well.
Want to find out more? Check out News in Easy English.
What about an ESL New Article for Business English?
Are you looking for some ESL news articles that you can use with your business English students? If they’re high enough level, just go straight to the website of the most popular source for financial or business news in the country you’re teaching in.
For example, I used to find lots of excellent articles in the Korea Herald, or Korean Times. It’s easy enough to adapt them if necessary to make them a little bit easier. You can adapt them at the sentence level, but I generally would make the entire article a bit shorter and with simpler language.
My secret tip is to choose kind of evergreen articles that can be used for years down the road. That way, you can do the work of adapting the article once and then use it for lots of classes. For example, I used some about getting enough sleep, youth unemployment, raising taxes on cigarettes, and tariffs on imported goods,
How to Learn English with the News?
Find out more details about using a new articles for ESL students. It’s a fun way to bring some real life into the classroom so give it a try today!
Did you Like These Teaching Tips about Finding ESL Newspaper Articles?
Yes? Thought so. Then you’re going to love this book, available on Amazon: 101 ESL Activities for Adults. They key to happy, engaged students is a great topic (these ESL news articles should help with that) and then a variety of interesting games and activities. This book has enough of them to get you through an entire semester in style.
Well-Organized and Easy to Use
The best part is that the book is well-organized into various sections (reading, speaking, listening, writing, review, grammar, 4-skills, etc.) This means that you’ll be able to find an activity to use in your lessons in just a couple of minutes. Doesn’t work for you? Get in touch and I’ll personally refund your money!
- Amazon Kindle Edition
- Bolen, Jackie (Author)
- English (Publication Language)
- 147 Pages - 03/09/2016 (Publication Date)
Available in a Variety of Formats
You can the book in both digital and print versions. Keep a copy on the bookshelf in your office and use it as a handy reference guide for when you’re planning your ESL lessons. Or, take the e-version with you to your favourite coffee shop for lesson planning on the go. It really is that easy to have better English classes!
Where Can I Get It?
You can easily find this book on Amazon. So head over there now, but only if you want to get yourself a serious dose of ESL teaching awesome in your life, okay?
What’s Your Go-To Source for ESL Articles for Adults?
Do you have a favourite site for news articles for your English conversation classes? Leave a comment below and share it with the world! We’d love to hear from you.
Also be sure to give this article a share on Facebook, Pinterest, or Twitter. It’ll help other busy teachers, like yourself who are trying to plan their lessons.
Oh yeah, and this stuff is pro level for those private teaching lessons or online teaching when you may be scratching your head trying to figure out what to do.
Last update on 2020-10-13 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API