Speaking seems intuitively to be the most important
Speaking provides rehearsal opportunities
Important source of feedback for both teachers and
Opportunity to activate the various sources of
elements they have stored in their brains
Recall a successful activity in the classroom that you
have either organized or participated in as student.
What are the characteristics of this activity that make
you judge it ‘successful’?
Characterists of a successful speaking
Learners talk a lot
Participation is even
Motivation is high
Language is of an acceptable level
Think back to your experiences as either a learner or a
teacher. What are some of the problems in getting
learners to talk in the classroom?
Nothing to say
Low or uneven participation
How to overcome these problems
Use group work
Base the activity on easy language
Make a careful choice of topic and task to stimulate interest
Give some instruction or training in discussion skill
Keep students speaking the target language
Fluency and Confidence
Put learners in ‘safe’ situations in class where they are
inspired and encouraged to try using language they
Activities that lead to fluency and
If the lesson aim is: ‘Learners will become more fluent –
speaking more confidently with less hesitation’. Which of
these activities might help fulfil this aim?
1. Learners repeat a sentence you say.
2. Learners chat with you about their weekend plans.
3. Learners work in pairs and agree on their list of the
best five films of all times
4. Learners prepare a monologue about their hobbies
and give a 5-minute speech to the whole class.
3. Telling stories - words
It was a beautiful morning. My brother and I...
4. Discussion Bingo
Examples of topics
taste – learning English – good food – city life –
personality – identity – art – luck – the 21st century
It seems that...
Gone are the times...
It’s not known whether...
When I was younger, I’d
I really wish...
Not necessarily, because... There is no doubt that...
You must bear in mind...
I really regret...
People will always...
I tend to...
Oh, come on...
On the whole...
Jigsaw Activity – Clues
Miss Johnson owns a dog.
The pet at 225 Bourbon Street is a dog.
The dog owner likes to go jogging.
The widowed man and the single woman like to go
There are five pets: a cat, a dog, a hamster, a fish, and a
The married woman likes to do yoga.
The man who likes to snowboard does not own a pet.
Mrs. Smith is married.
- Do you work indoors or outdoors?
- Do you work with your hands?
- Do you wear a uniform?
* Who am I?
- Are you alive?
- Are you a man or a woman?
* (The Akinator)
Role Card 1
Your company has designed a range
of revolutionary new products,
completely different from your
You are having a meeting with one
of your best customers. Describe
the new products to him/her.
Role Card 2
You are having a meeting to hear
about some amazing new products
from an important supplier.
Ask lots of questions and find out as
much as you can about the products.
Crime is increasing because of violence on television.
The police should be more heavily armed.
Everybody is a potential murderer.
Prisions are ‘schools of crime’
Example: Which of these statements do you agree with?
The main cause of crime is:
( ) violence on TV ( ) poverty ( ) lack of discipline
Example - Facebook
‘Over the last decade, the service has become nearly
synonymous with what it means to be part of online
social networks. It has entered more than a billion lives,
changing the way people around the globe interact, do
business, communicate and connect.
(The NY Times Blog)’
Do you use Facebook? If you don’t use, why not?
How has Facebook changed your life?
Have you made friends through the site?
Has it lead to a new opportunity?
Has it caused you to lose real friends?
Was there one event that made you realize this was
something you could/couldn’t live without?
Harmer, Jeremy. How to teach English. Essex: Pearson Education
Harmer, Jeremy. The Practice of English Language Teaching. Essex:
Pearson Education Limited, 2007.
Scrivener, Jim. Learning Teaching. Oxford: Macmillan Education,
Thornbury, Scott. How to Teach Speaking. Essex: Pearson
Education Limited, 2005.
Ur, Penny. A Course in Language Teaching. Cambridge:
Cambridge University Press, 1996.