introduce teachers to pairwork and
groupwork and to show the advantages
of working in pairs and groups.
To show teachers how to organize pair
and groupwork effectively and how to
deal with initial problems that may arise.
To show how pair and groupwork can
be used for various classroom activities.
Teachers to bring in examples of some
of the activities listed:
Practicing short dialogues
Reading a text and answering
Short writing exercises
Discussions, grammar exercises
Teachers understand what pairwork and
In pairwork, the teacher divides the whole
class into pairs. Every student works with
his or her partner, and all the pairs work at
the same time.
In groupwork, the teacher divides the
class into small groups to work together (
usually four or five students in each group).
As in pairwork, all the groups work
at the same time.
You will demonstrate three activities:
the first two are examples of pairwork and
third is an examples of groupwork.
The purpose of these activities is to give
teachers the experience of doing language
practice in pairs and groups, as a basis for
later discussion.They do not necessarily
show exactly what teachers would do in
their own classes.
Explain that it is an example of pairwork used for
controlled oral practice; it practice vocabulary
and conditional structures.
A. Work in pairs. Ask and answer the questions.
What happens if…
a) you eat unripe fruit?
b) you eat too much food?
c)you leave ice in the sun?
d) you drive over broken glass?
e) you sit in the sun too long?
Ask the two questions to the whole class, to
show how the activity works. ( more than one
answer is possible: e.g.
(a) you’ll be sick. (b) You will get a stomach
ache: / you’ll get fat.
2) Divide teachers into pairs to ask and answer the
3) When most pairs have finished, go through the
4) Ask some pairs to tell you the questions they
thought of themselves.
Explain that is an example of a reading
activity done in pairs. Students work
together to try to understand the text.
Work in pairs.
Can you answer these questions?
- What is acid rain?
- How is it caused?
- What damage does it do?
2. Read the text and find the answers.
3.Underline all the words in the text which
you do not understand.
With your partner, try to guess what they
1) Briefly explain what teachers have to do.
Then divide them into pairs to do the
2) When most pairs have finished, Discuss.
Throughout Europe, and also in other
areas of the world such as India, China
and parts of America, forests are being
destroyed. According to one prediction,
Germany ‘s forests will have vanished by
the end of the century. This destruction
is caused by air pollution. Power stations
and cars are mainly responsible- they
emit gases into the air which, after a
series of chemical changes, turn into
These acids fall as ‘acid rain’, raising the
level of acidity in the soil, in lakes and in
rivers to dangerous levels, and destroying
not only trees but also fish and other
wildlife. The industrialized world is slowly
waking up to the fact that urgent action is
needed to reduce air pollution, otherwise
our environment will be damaged beyond
Explain that it is an example of a
discussion activity done in groups.This is
much freer activity, and aims to develop
fluency in speaking. Work in group:
1. Which of these people
earns the most money in
2. Who do you think should
earn the most money?
Who should earn more, and
who should earn less?
For certain types of activity, pairwork and groupwork
have a number of advantages over working with the
whole class together.
What are the advantages of using pairwork and
What problems might thee be?
more language practice
Students are more
Students feel secure.
Students help each other.
Discuss the advantages first:
1. More language practice: Pairwork and
groupwork give students far more chance to
2. Students are more involved: working in pairs
or groups encourages students to be more
involved and to concentrate on the task.
3. Students feel secure:students feel less
anxiety when they are working ‘privately’
than they are ‘on show’ in front of the whole
class.pairwork and groupwork can help shy
students who would never say anything in a
whole –class activity.
4) Students help each other: pairwork and
groupwork encourage students to share
ideas and knowledge. In a reading activity
students can help each other to explore
the meaning of a text, and give each other
Noise: obviously, pairwork and groupwork in a
large class will be noisy, and this cannot be
- usually the students themselves are not
disturbed by the noise; it is more noticeable to
the teacher standing at the side or to someone
in the next room.
- the noise created by pairwork and groupwork
is usually ‘good’ noise-students using English,
or engaged in a learning task.
2)Students make mistakes: during a pair or group
work activity, the teacher can not control all the
language used, and should not try to do so. When
doing controlled language practice in pairs or
groups, the number of mistakes can be reduced:
- by giving enough preparation.The activity can
be done with the whole class first, and then
pairwork used for the final stage.
- by checking afterwards. The teacher can ask
some pairs or groups what they said, and then
correct mistakes if necessary.
3) Difficult control class: the teacher has less
control over what students are doing in pairwork
and groupwork than in a normal class. To stop
activities getting out of control,
It is important to:
- give clear instructions about when to
start, what to do , and when stop.
-give clearly defined tasks which do not
continue for too long:
- set up a routine, so that students accept the
idea of working in pairs or groups, and know
exactly what to do.
Pattern practice: this can be done in pairs in
the same way as the likes/ dislikes’ activity
you demonstrated. Any controlled oral
practice can be done first with the whole
class, and then in pairs.
Practicing short dialogues: acting out short
dialogue can very easily be done in pairs,
with little chance of students making
mistakes. It can be done first with pairs of
students in front of the class, and then with
all the students working in pairs at the same
Reading a text and answering questions:
students can discuss questions in pairs or
groups and then read the text: or they can read
the text silently, and then ask and answer
questions in pairs or groups. This is a good way
of involving the whole class in answering
Short writing exercise: students can sit in
froups and decide together what to write –one
student acts as ‘ secretary’. This can be difficult
to organize, but in a large class it has the
advantage that students correct each others’
mistakes and the teacher only has a few papers
to mark at the end.
Discussions: it is important to define the
discussion clearly, and to ask each group
to report their conclusions afterwards.
Grammar exercises: students can do
grammar exercises orally in pairs; the
teacher goes through the answers
afterwards with the whole class, and
students write the exercise foe homework.
This more interesting and productive than
students doing exercises alone, in silence.
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