ESL Worksheets & Lesson Packets

These ESL worksheets and lessons can save busy teachers planning time as well as provide useful practice to supplement the lesson’s main activities. They can be especially helpful to teachers who don’t have a textbook, or for teaching areas the text does not cover well.

cover pictures for some ESL Worksheet pdfs: a games packet, The Impact of Disease, Medical Mysteries, Word Roots, Basic Academic Vocabulary, Word Detective, & Learn English with ...CognatesSome ESL worksheet pdfs on EnglishHints

Most ESL worksheet packets include lesson planning suggestions and integrated lessons, with links to reading or listening practice and ideas for class discussion, group work, and games as well as worksheets.  

The rationale and general content for each of the types of English worksheets (vocabulary, comprehension, etc.) is explained on the linked pages to various kinds of worksheets and lessons.

Jump straight to the worksheet page links.

More details:

All are printable pdfs for high beginner, intermediate, or advanced practice for English language learners.

Most can be used in general classrooms for ELL students, ESL or EFL classes from 4th or 5th grade up. However, they have been designed with middle school, high school, or adult classes in mind.

Some worksheet packets (like those for prefixes, suffixes, or roots) can also be used for individual study. Some others (especially those with lesson plans) have related packets for individual rather than classroom study.

Using pdfs

To use these ESL worksheets you will need a pdf reader. If you do not already have one, you can download the Adobe Reader for free here.  (Be sure to uncheck the McAfee Security Scan if you already have a system you prefer. It conflicts with some other systems…) 

If you want to make changes in the worksheets, it’s possible to convert them to Word documents using free or paid conversion software like the pdf converter. I have tried the free version (now only a free 15 day trial) and know it works, but there may be better converters available. (Adobe and Nitro Reader both offer conversion to Word for a price.)   

Please remember that these worksheets are copyrighted. When you download a worksheet, whether free or paid, as the copyright holder I am giving you the right to make changes for your classroom, but not to share with other teachers without permission and absolutely not to redistribute or sell.

(Contact me on the form at the bottom of any download page if your school needs multiple copies or there’s economic hardship, and we can work something out.) Return Policy

Your satisfaction guaranteed. Please contact me if you have any problems or questions. If you are not happy with any worksheet, please contact me for a full refund (or a credit plus 10% on another packet if you prefer.) On the other hand, if you find the worksheet helpful please take a moment to share that information with others (in Facebook comments on the page or by contacting me.)

  • Academic Vocabulary Worksheets (explaining why it's important to teach academic vocabulary, & including a free pdf on scientific method vocabulary and a pdf teaching & practicing words for success and achievement)
  • Common Phrasal Verbs (explanations, examples, and practice activities for 7 short-- under 1/2 hour-- lessons introducing just under 100 very common phrasal verbs)
  • Root, Prefix, and Suffix Worksheets(a free and a more extensive paid suffix packet, prefixes, roots, and a roots and affixes bundle including them all-- see also the Word Detective packet and bundle below: reading comp AND word parts)
  • Reading Comprehension Lesson Plans: 
  • >>free reading comp lesson plans on teen sleep, whales as climate change victims or heroes, and motivation; 
  • >>paid lesson plans on teaching word detection skills (context, inference, prediction, skimming, close reading, summarizing, and word analysis skills-- as well as important academic vocabulary practice-- in the Word Detective packet and the Word Detective bundle, which includes the packet plus all the materials in the roots and affix packets above), and 
  • >> paid lesson plans on the history of scientific research into diseases: a Medical Mysteries unit or more limited lessons on the Impact of Disease in History, a Disease Webquest, or the History of Scurvy.
  • Grammar Worksheets (many free individual tense worksheets and a proofreading checklist, plus paid packets of past tense worksheets, one with lesson plans and two for individual study) *
  • Printable Classroom Games (various free matching games and puzzles, and paid packets to with a variety of games to practice irregular past tense verbs)
  • Free Printable Worksheets (a page that links to many of the free individual worksheets from the different categories above) *

* pages marked with asterisks (*) at the end have pdfs for individual study as well as (or instead of, for the Roots+ page) classroom practice.

Free Printable Worksheets includes sample vocabulary and root worksheets plus reading comprehension and some others, including grammar, idiom, and quiz worksheets.

Note that many of the vocabulary and quiz worksheets on that page are for advanced students, with a large number of words reviewed on a single page. You can also find pdfs on the Printable Crossword Puzzle page.

Using ESL Worksheets for Personal English Study

ESL worksheets can be a useful way to practice and gain confidence with new vocabulary and structures. However, remember that the most important practice of all is to use the new words and ideas in real communication: in listening and speaking, reading and writing.

That’s why teachers often have several lessons on closely related subjects-- to review some of the same structures and words you have just learned. It’s also why I try to include links to related reading or listening materials on the Internet-- and why it’s so important to have someone to practice with if you are not in an English class.

(See Practice English Conversation and Learn English Free for ideas if you are trying to study English but don’t already have a friend or study partner you can practice with.)

If you are studying English on your own you will not need most of the packets listed above, especially designed for classrooms.

However, Learn English with Spanish Cognates; Roots, Prefixes, & Suffixes; Reading Comprehension Worksheets; Grammar Worksheets; and Essay Writing Practice pages have some pdfs especially designed for individual study. They're marked with asterisks above.

There are also individual worksheets, lessons, and practice exercises on EnglishHints that will let you practice much of the same material. 

Most of the worksheets on Free Printable Worksheets will also work for individual (intermediate to advanced) study if you want to download them to study offline.

Write something-- even just notes to yourself, or your opinion on something you have read-- as well as talking about the subject and reading anything you can on it. That will help in remembering what you have learned as well as increasing your fluency.

The more you use what you learn, the better you will retain it and the easier it will be to speak English even with people you don’t know well.

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