Learn English Together (LET)

Starting ESOL for small groups

Many people would like to help refugees and asylum seekers, but don’t know where to start, or know that English language support is needed but don’t know how to provide it.  This is where Learn English Together (LET) can help. 

LET is a pilot project to provide training and resources to enable small community organisations to start beginner English language sessions.

LET will provide support with;

  • Training: introduction to English Language Teaching, learner recruitment, safeguarding etc.
  • Resources for 10 week courses
  • Monitoring and evaluation
  • Ongoing encouragement and advice

100% of volunteers surveyed said that they feel they are having a “positive impact upon the lives of others.”

Learners say…

“Because of the people, I’ve made friends, improve relationship, learn about other cultures, including English culture.”

“I feel more confident when I speak English, I have improved my listening, as well. So, my communication skills and my confidence have been improved considerably.”

“When I arrived in Newcastle I was shy. My English wasn’t very good but now I understand and have conversations.”

Things to consider:

Are you part of an organisation? LET does not work with individuals. You need the support of your leader(s)/Trustees of the organisation.

Do you have learners?  Make sure you know there are people around who have limited English and would like to come to your English sessions.

Do you have other volunteers who are available?  You should aim to have at least four volunteers from your organisation ready to train and deliver English over the course of the year. They will need a good level of English (advanced learner or   native speaker). However, they do NOT need teaching experience.

Are volunteers available at a time that suits your learners?  Try to find a time that suits everybody – check other events and English provision locally to avoid clashes.

Do you have a venue?  You need to identify an appropriate and accessible place for your sessions to take place that your learners can easily get to.

Training and resources:

Volunteer training:  This would take place at your venue, for one full day or two half days.  It would provide an introduction to English Language teaching            techniques, practical advice for working with beginner English learners and making the most of learning materials, as well as information on monitoring, progress tracking and safeguarding. We would ensure volunteers had access to our online forum in order to connect with each other, and also to receive updates and materials from Action Language and to contact us for guidance and advice.

Training will include…

  • Recording learners and their progress
  • Communication skills
  • Recognising different ESOL levels
  • Adapting activities
  • Introducing basic literacy
  • Safeguarding

Resources: The resource boxes will be introduced at training, but include topic based packs based on everyday situations where learners need language e.g. making healthcare appointments, shopping and travel. There will be photocopiable worksheets, flashcards, games, all at a variety of levels, as well as useful websites, attendance registers and handbooks for volunteers. You will have materials for a 2 hour session per week for 10 weeks each term (as a minimum), but they are flexible enough to last much longer!

LET is a project run by Action Language which is part of the charity Action Foundation Registered charity number: 1132051

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