Voki Lesson Plans: ESL/ELL Lesson Plans

Voki Lesson Plans: ESL/ELL Lesson Plans

Happy New Year everyone!

Let’s ring in the New Year with new Voki lesson plans! We have prepared 3 new ESL/ELL lesson plans for non-English speakers!  Your students will enjoy learning about idioms, heteronyms, and writing about current events.

Idioms (Intermediate) – In this lesson, students will learn what idioms are and some of the most common idioms used in the United States.  Idiom is an expression that means something other than the literal meanings of its individual words. The class will discuss the different idioms they have heard in the past. This lesson allows students to understand the proper usage of idioms and their meanings.  Students will create their own Voki using the idioms taught.


Heteronyms (Beginner) – This lesson plan will teach students what heteronyms are and the different heteronym used. Heteronyms are words that are spelled the same but have different pronunciation and meaning.  Students will discuss about the different heteronym used and the definition of each words.  They will be required to create a Voki using at least 5 different pairs of heteronyms in sentences.


Current Events (Intermediate) – Students will pick out an interesting news article to read. They will learn how to summarize the article, describe the article, and write about how they feel about the article. Students will be required to create a Voki presenting their article.


Remember: The grade level assigned to each lesson plan is not set in stone. You can use Voki lesson plans for a higher, or lower, grade than the one you teach. Feel free to customize the lesson plans to fit your needs. These Voki lesson plans can be adapted to fit your style or your students’ abilities!

Do you have lesson plan ideas that you want to share with us? Send it to us at lessonplans@voki.com!

Until Next Time,

The Voki Team

English Rules Are Cool for School with Voki

English Rules Are Cool for School with Voki

It’s time to give English grammar and writing the appreciation they deserve! Often considered to be a difficult language with more exceptions than rules, English has the ability to mystify students and teachers alike. In order to cultivate young minds that can distinguish the subtleties of the English language, teachers and students must be open to connecting many rules, in order to understand how they work together to form one language. With this in mind, we have dedicated this week to English grammar and all of its glory. From homonyms to helping verbs, we’ve got you covered on the basics.

Our new English Grammar lesson plans are now live in the Voki Lesson Plan Database. As always, Voki lesson plans are provided to teachers free of charge!

Remember: The grade assigned to each lesson plan is not set in stone – you can use Voki lesson plans from a higher, or lower, grade than the one you teach – if you think they fit! Also, remember that you can adapt Voki lesson plans to fit your style or your students’ abilities.

  • Helping Verbs (4th Grade) – In this lesson, students will learn the 23 different helping verbs and use Voki to make lessons for their peers. In order to gain an understanding of what separates a helping verb from an action verb, students will be asked to act out verbs that the teacher says. After the actions (or inactions) are done, students will have had first hand experience dealing with the two forms. The idea of verbs with no singular meaning may confuse some ESL students, so it helps to be fully prepared for this lesson in advance. By the end of this lesson, students will understand the grammatical importance of helping verbs.
  • Capitalize that! (3rd Grade) – In this lesson students will be in charge of exploring a capitalization rule out of the many in the English language. Students create a Voki that informs classmates of a capitalization rule, and then give an example. The Vokis can be combined on a webpage to serve as a reference for students before a test.
  • Homonyms (5th Grade) – Students will discover the subtleties of the English language by familiarizing themselves with the 5 categories of homonyms. Utilizing various homonym jokes, Voki avatars, and formal instruction, students will become more attuned to the details of English and hopefully never write ‘to’ in place of ‘too’!

When it comes to teaching English grammar rules, the power of repetition and an interactive atmosphere is not to be underestimated. If one student understands the rules, ask him or her to explain it to the students that need help.

Each of these Voki lessons contain tasks that ask students repeat what they learn, through various activities, before creating a Voki. Doing so will help students remember the rules and link what they have learned to other grammar rules they encounter in the future.

As always, we are interested in hearing about how you have used Voki in class. If you have a lesson plan that uses Voki (or that can be adapted to incorporate Voki) and you would like to share, please email us at lessonplans@voki.com.

We hope you enjoy!


The Voki Team

Lesson Plan Preview – Conjugation Practice with Voki

Lesson Plan Preview – Conjugation Practice with Voki

Learning a second language can be tough for all ages. Making grammar practice fun can be just plain difficult. Here at Voki, we have been working on creating lesson plans that can bring seemingly mundane subjects to life and make learning fun!

One lesson in particular is focused on making grammar and conjugation more engaging – more than just written repetition and paperwork. By using Voki to practice conjugation and sentence structure, students will get the chance to interact with language through sight and sound.

The lesson plan “Conjugation and Sentence Practice with Voki” calls for students to choose a verb, conjugate in the tense being studied, and create a Voki. Following the conjugations, students type an example sentence. The Voki can then pronounce their conjugations and example sentence in the language being studied and in the preferred dialect. Once students feel comfortable with the pronunciation and conjugations of a verb, they can record their own voice for the Voki.

If the teacher uses Voki Classroom, a webpage is automatically created for the lesson. If the lesson is conducted using Voki (and not Voki Classroom), the teacher can use a class blog or webpage to display the Vokis. By creating a webpage, teachers and students have access to an online audio-visual database of verbs that are fully conjugated and pronounced correctly. The webpage can serve as reference and extra practice for the class.

Conjugation and Sentence Practice with Voki” is one of many new lesson plans that we have added to the Voki Lesson Plan Database. As always, Voki lesson plans are free for all to peruse and use. Happy conjugating!

The Voki Team

Interviews with Educators | Lisa Nielsen

Interviews with Educators | Lisa Nielsen

Lisa NielsenWe wanted to write an intro for Lisa Nielsen, writer and educator, but she kindly went ahead and wrote a better intro than we could ever come up with. So, without further ado, take it away, Lisa!

Lisa Nielsen
I am the author of The Innovative Educator blog (http://theinnovativeeducator.blogspot.com) and the upcoming book, Teaching Generation Text which focuses on using basic voice and text enabled cell phones in education to bridge the digital divide. I have more than a decade’s worth of experience in working to help New York City school’s educate innovatively.

My goal with using Voki is to give every student a voice and a face in a fun and engaging way even if they only have access to a phone.

How I use Voki

Voki is a great tool that allows the 21st century student to capture, publish, celebrate and converse about any topic or subject.  I love helping innovative educators use Voki.  Here are some of the things they are doing.

  • Students can use Voki in the revision process of their writing by recording a Voki to make sure it sounds right. If it doesn’t, simply revise and re-record.
  • During publishing parties some students are uncomfortable reading their work. Thanks to Voki they can present their work without embarrassment.
  • English and Foreign language Learners can use Voki by recording themselves saying dialogue or reading a passage.  Listening to the Voki enables them to hear how they sound and work on fluency.

Some of my favorite things about Voki:

  • It enables students who might not be proficient at writing to tell their story or share their message.
  • It enables students to publish to an authentic audience in a format where others can comment and keep the conversation going.
  • It gives a voice to a student who might not feel comfortable speaking publicly.

What would I add to the Voki product?
The ability to add your own Avatar either your photo or drawing.

My favorite Voki trick
Set up pages at the end of units of study where students can share one great thing they learned. This creates a page of our learning which serves as a great reflective tool.  I also suggest inviting parents, family members and others in the school to community to leave Voki comments for students.

Check out Lisa’s blog: http://theinnovativeeducator.blogspot.com/

Follow Lisa at: http://twitter.com/InnovativeEdu

Want to be interviewed for this section? Send us a note and a link to your blog/ twitter at submit@voki.com.