Tips for using anecdotes in EFL/ESL classes
In every class that I teach I try to use anecdotes to attract their attention. I always relate the anecdotes with the topic that will follow. I use them as ice-breakers and also as a motivational tool for the class. . Before each class I have some rules in mind.
First, you should relate the anecdote with the topic of the lesson. So when you finish with the anecdote you can smoothly go back to the lesson. This time you will have your students’ attention.
Second, be sure that the anecdote will be of interest to all students. You don’t want some of them listening and the others wandering around.
Third, you should use the appropriate vocabulary, according to their level of English. They should be able to follow and understand the anecdote.
Fourth, you should end with a question, thus involving them into discussion, or motivating them to share their experiences.
Fifth, use a lot of body language and movement around the class. You attract their attention and at the same time you come closer to them, not just a teacher that speaks behind his desk with authority, but you are one of them. So they feel relaxed and enjoy the anecdote.