10 Teaching Resources to Bring Abroad

After you land that awesome job teaching English abroad, the next thing to think about is what to bring with you! Adventure Teaching has got you covered on what to pack for your day-to-day life, but what about for your new job? Schools will generally provide supplemental teaching resources like activity books, games, and arts and crafts supplies. It is also nice to bring some extra resources from home that are difficult to find overseas to spice up your lessons! Here are my top 10 teaching resources to bring abroad:

1. Flashcards

These come in handy when students have extra time at the end of a lesson or if you have an ambitious group of students who want to hang out with you during lunch break. They are great for games and private lessons, too! Try to find flashcards based around common vocabulary sets such as food, clothes, weather and animals.

2. Teaching workbooks that can be photocopied

Stopping by your local bookstore or ordering photocopiable workbooks online will definitely come in handy. It’s easy to forget that English resources are more difficult to find in countries where English is not the first language.

3. English/Grammar books for the grades you’re teaching

Before you head over overseas, you will usually have an idea of which grades you’ll be teaching (i.e. elementary, middle or high school). Use this information to your advantage and seek out some ESL books and/or grammar books to use as resources (and to brush up on your own skills). I would also recommend bringing some of your favourite books to read in class (or for students to look through). My grade ones especially loved reading “ABC Canada” by Kim Bellefontaine.

teaching resources to bring abroad childrens books

4. Video clips, CDs, files on USB

These help make your lessons more dynamic! If you can find ways to add short clips that are age appropriate, your students will be forever grateful. For example, English movies with subtitles are helpful for students to practice their reading and comprehension skills. Some schools will have projectors, or you an use a laptop or iPad to play them for your class.

5. Magic tricks or simple English games

This could be a deck of cards, Uno, or simple magic tricks. English can be difficult for some students, especially if they are sitting in classes all day. Why not spice things up with some fun English games?

6. Stickers with English phrases

Or even stickers with your home country’s flag on them. I once brought 100 stickers of Canadian flags and my elementary students proudly displayed the stickers all over their notebooks for the rest of the year.

7. Small prizes/toys from your home country

When I arrived in Korea, my suitcase was full of small games, toys, pencils, notebooks, bubbles, and postcards from my home country. Check out your local dollar store for little trinkets to use as prizes.

teaching resources to bring abroad bubbles

*Tip: Think about holidays during the year and stock up on themed supplies.

8. Writing paper that can be photocopied

In my experience in Korea, they did not have that three-lined printing paper many of us used when we learned to write. Finding a notebook or online resource that allows easy access to these pages will help when teaching students how to print in English.

9. Musical instrument (if travel sized) and music sheets

Any books, recourses or song sheets that can help make English more fun. My students loved when I played music and taught simple songs they could sing along to.

10. A smile and positive attitude

This one is the most important of all! Having a positive attitude and open mind about teaching and living abroad is key. Work together with colleagues and share resources with other teachers. Enjoy your time with your students and go the extra mile to be an extra-ordinary teacher!

Want more teaching tips and tricks?

Sign up for our monthly newsletter! We’ll send resources and advice from experienced teachers straight to your inbox.

Leanne Glasser

Leanne Glasser

Leanne is a Canadian living in Monterey, California pursuing her passions: teaching, writing, research, and her love of the outdoors. She enjoys dancing, yoga, long distance running, and hiking with her husband and their two rescue dogs from South Korea. Leanne considers herself to be a lifelong learner, always looking for new adventures and travel experiences. Check out more of Leanne’s writing at https://leanneofgreengables.wordpress.com
Leanne Glasser

Latest posts by Leanne Glasser (see all)