|Sounds good to me!
Photo by unlistedsightings
- Before an information gap activity (see below) drill the questions. For example, if the kids are going round asking each other ‘Do you like pizza?’ then drill the question several times and show how ‘do you’ changes to /ʤə/. If it’s a longer question, like ‘What did you have for lunch today?’ I tend to tap out the rhythm and stress before they practise.
- Get students to listen to mini dialogues in the books and repeat line by line before they do it themselves, or you can just get them to repeat after you.
- Drill lines to songs before they sing as a class.
- Drill the phrases you have just made them aware of (see last blog) before they do the activities themselves.
- I used to hate reading aloud at school, but mainly because I never had a chance to practise. Before students read aloud let them have a go at their part. Get them to highlight which words are stressed, where the words join, or sounds change. I’ve read out mini stories as a class this way and it’s great fun, especially when they put on voices.
- Before checking grammar homework get students to practise saying the sentences in pairs and highlight key words, stress, and intonation.
- You can read aloud stories, texts, dialogues, even listening transcripts. Anyway they can practise is great for their pronunciation.
|Great photo for making a dialogue with your class.
Photo by Pensive Glance
Using the dialogues in the course books
- Students first listen to the dialogue and repeat line by line.
- Model the conversation with one of the stronger students.
- You can be one of the people in the dialogue and the whole class can be the other.
- Two students demonstrate in front of the class and then the whole class practise in pairs.
- Model the conversation, but change it in some way. For example, imagine there is a dialogue in a restaurant. The first time they practise it as it is in the book, then model it again but change the food, drink and prices. Students practise again, first with the dialogue, and then without, to see if they can remember.
- You can even create your own dialogue in class with the students. Start by getting a picture of two people on the board (the one above could make for some interesting dialogues). You start it how you want, maybe related to what you’ve just been teaching, and you write up the dialogue line by line as a class. Do some drilling, students repeat the dialogue in pairs a couple of times, and then you gradually rub it out so they have to reproduce it from memory.
To make this really worthwhile, help them with the pronunciation. Get them to mark the key words in their part, show aspects of connected speech and really get them to practise before they perform in front of the class. Even if you have to do it over two classes.
So there are a few controlled ways of getting students to speak. The next blog will be on more freer activities to help students improve their speaking.