So how can we nurture oracy in the classroom?
- How do you decide whether you are good at this subject, what is the most important skill when learning a language?
How can we move forward and support our learners?
- Narrow reading - flooded input - used as a listening but also as reading aloud activity - supporting pronunciation. Could be also used as translation activity - the teacher saying the text in L1 and the students matching it to L2.
- Oral ping - pong - this could be done as a written translation task, but I often use it as oral activity - students translating the sentences verbally taking turns and checking the accuracy and me - the teacher their pronunciation.
- Trapdoor - is a great game which offers students opportunities to rehearse and practise the same structures over and over again.
- Battleships - students creating combinations of sentences - verbally - ensuring correct verb conjugation. Can be used to practice various grammatical structures such as tenses, adjectival agreements etc. Walk thru 'Say it better' could be used to make it more challenging.
- 'Catch the dog game' - I have been using this game for years - it could be used as RP/speaking practice at any stage in the lesson. I have a bank of interleaved questions (various topics) that I use with each year group. Soft toy dog is thrown to a student with a question he/she has to answer on the spot, firstly led by me - the teacher, later on the student picks another student asking him/her a question. This is a great way for students to practise not only answering questions but also asking questions which is a very important skill too. I often use it for practising tenses.
- Board games - snakes and ladders, connect four, dice games - the first template I would use with my KS3, the other two are from www.teachitlanguages.co.uk which are more suitable for KS4.
- Digital tools - with all of the recent changes in teaching, I, like many of us have become much better at using technology to our advantage and to enrich our delivery, they certainly can be great for enhancing learning and motivation - my favourite ones are - Wheel of names - I usually use key words and students need to make a sentence using the key word or a question which students have to answer and Flippity. I like to use 2 or 3 tools trying not to overload my students. The key for me is that they serve the purpose of learning and are not just a new gimmick. Some tools can be engaging and 'fun' but have a very low value in terms of learning and acquisition, so we should be wary of it.