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Why use these books?

These photocopiable task-based group stories transform the classroom into a hub of communicative, cooperative activity. Focusing on theme-based vocabulary building, discussion is stimulated through thought-provoking questions in the areas of relationships, ethics, and cross-cultural comparison.

  • an essential role for each student
  • peer teaching lowers affective filter
  • stories improve listening skills
  • memorization trains the ear in English syntax
  • discussions bridge the gap between advanced level cognitive skills & low level linguistic skills
  • illustrations make stories accessible
  • group questions improve writing skills
  • cloze exercises reinforce vocabulary, idioms & syntax

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The Non-Jigsaw Books, Matching Cards & Bingo Games

The three non-jigsaw books Callan’s Beginner EssentialsCallan’s Canadian Holidays for Low Beginner ESL and Callan’s Conversation Surveys for Beginner ESL feature abundant, clear illustrations and basic information, while carefully avoiding difficult vocabulary, making them accessible to the lowest level students. 

Matching Cards and Bingo games make vocabulary study fun for low beginners. 

Browse the books

Latest blog posts

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    Click in this section of the ESL Jigsaws blog to find lessons related to study about Canada. Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms Geography Vocabulary Speaking Game Making Canada Study Come Alive Having Fun with New Canada Jigsaws What it Means to be Canadian
  • Low Beginner Introductions: Where Are You From?
    Here’s an introductions speaking task for low beginner ESL answering the question “Where are you from?” I love tap sheets (see below). You could have students cut out the words and then arrange them into sentences, but you could also use it as is as a tap sheet, over and over. Break students into pairs. … Read more
  • Money: Coins and Bills
    After students have mastered numbers and dollar amounts, they can work on the names of coins. Here below is a basic matching exercise for literacy level practicing Canadian coins. You can cut out the cards and use them in a variety of ways. (Click on the image below to download.)
  • Teaching Vocabulary
    Many sources suggest limiting teaching new vocabulary to under ten new words a day. Attaching a story or a context when you teach a word is more effective for student retention than simply teaching the meaning. The more times students encounter a word, the more easily they will remember it. Some sources suggest students need … Read more
  • Soft Skills: Who Picks up the Bill?
    We often think of bargaining language as confined to situations like a garage sale or to the purchase of larger items like cars or homes. One of the most common negotiations most people will engage in at some point is who will pay the bill in a restaurant. Not only are there language and soft skills specific to this … Read more