Easy ESL Games Adult Resource #004 – Lisa Bu: How books can open your mind – TED

Ted Talks are a great lesson idea for adult learners. ESL lessons aren’t always about games but they should always be interesting.

What happens when a dream you’ve held since childhood … doesn’t come true? As Lisa Bu adjusted to a new life in the United States, she turned to books to expand her mind and create a new path for herself. She shares her unique approach to reading in this lovely, personal talk about the magic of books.



  1. I teach TED.com lessons by asking topic related advanced level  introductory questions to get the conversation started. E.x. "what is a movement?"  "Can you name any movements?" etc.
  2. After that, I play the the talk once and ask the  students to listen and tell me what they heard.  
  3. Then, I let them watch the TED talk and ask them to tell me any addition information they gathered.
  4. Next, I hand out the fill-in-the-blanks .pdf file and ask the class to follow along with the talk.
  5. Then, the entire class takes turns reading the TED talk PDF (provided below) and we discuss any English vocabulary or comprehension issues.
  6. Finally, the class breaks into pairs and works on the questions provided in the PDF (provided below).  It’s important to switch partners frequently.