Materials for Coursebook-Free Lessons

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This post is definitely more interesting for teachers, but if you are learning English on a level starting from intermediate, it could be interesting for you as well.

I love coursebook-free lessons and give a lot of them all the time. Of course, it is not an easy way of teaching, because apart from finding interesting up-to-date materials and tailoring them to the needs and the level of a student (group), a teacher must come up with appropriate exercises and activities for those texts, videos or podcasts and it is definitely time consuming. However, I strongly believe it pays off, because doing that you can create something that makes you stand out, in other words it is your competitive advantage (of course if the whole system of materials and activities proves to be effective and creates positive emotions in your students)

The other day I decided to sort out all the sources I have been using into a kind of a table so that I could always refer to it any time I need it. I also thought If I shared it, teachers might find it useful as well.

So, this is where all the materials for my lessons come from. Check out the table below, and I will be grateful if you share your ideas and sources in the comments.


YouTube channels:




MIT Technology Review

MIT News technology


Media companies with lots of categorized content

YouTube channels:

CBC News

Time news

BBC News 





BBC News 

ABS (downloadable podcasts) 

Home of the Daily and Sunday Express


Ideas, science, innovation and learning

YouTube channels:

BBC Ideas 

Stanford University

ABS Science (Au) 


BBC Worklife

BBC Teach 

BBC Future (mostly texts) 

BBC Science View (podcasts)

BBC Space (+podcasts) 

ABS Catalyst 

ABC Cosmic Vertigo (podcasts)

Royal Museums Greenwich

BBC Crowd science 




Documentaries, stories

YouTube channels:

Great Big Story 

Al Aire Films

National Geographic


BBC REEL (short videos) 



YouTube channels: 


Japan Talk 



YouTube channels:



BBC Business Daily (+ podcasts)

CNN business


Sport and Travel

BBC Sport – get inspired

BBC Travel

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For almost 20 years I have been helping adult learners speak English, which for most of them was not only a learning challenge, but also a path to discover their potential and to believe in their abilities. It has also been a 20 year long journey for me to discover myself and my place in this world, for which I am sincerely grateful to my dear students. Read more

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