Another thing that we have learned over time - look after your resources!!! We have all at some stage created some fantastic games and activities, only to have them ruined after a few goes because we didn't take the time and effort to do things properly. This is one of the reasons we have created the website so that we have provided you with the resources for your lessons. All you need to do is print and laminate! I know too well the frustration with spending a Saturday afternoon laminating, only to have everything ruined by Tuesday afternoon.
The first step is to print onto white paper, or print straight onto coloured paper. My preference is to print the resources on white paper and then back onto coloured paper or coloured card, but it is up to you. If I back games onto coloured card, I usually leave a small coloured edge around the outside of the white paper.
We usually print enough copies for our classes so that each game can be played by two people, and then we do a few extra copies. So for a class of 26 students we make 15 copies (13 pairs, 2 spare). Then we trim them ready to laminate. I know it might seem like a lot of copies of games, but it is better to have extra than not enough! And when students don't get along particularly well, or if there are any other issues, having students work in pairs can help alleviate some of these concerns.
When laminating the games/cards make sure you have plenty of space in between each card, at least 2cm. As a language teacher, you might have lots of different students throughout the week and if cards aren't laminated properly they won't last long. Once the cards have been laminated, trim the edges but make sure you leave about 1cm or a little less around the edges of the card or paper. If you trim too much of the laminated edge off, they end up coming apart.
The last step is to store your resources properly. We have used a whole range of things, it just depends on what works best for you, and whatever fits with your budget. Stackable plastic containers can be good for storing game cards, but they can take up a lot of space and they can snap after time. Snap lock bags are also good to store game cards, but these can slip around and get lost. We usually store things by topic - so all of the number resources are together, animals together, etc. This way lessons can be differentiated quickly.
Our last tip - label everything by topic, level and the name of the game so they are easy to identify!