ESL etc.

Global Issues and Activism in English Language Teaching

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Podcast #2 – Roleplays

March 28th, 2007 by Dave · No Comments


I talk about how I’m using roleplays in my classes. I discuss both advantages and disadvantages, and how they can be done in large classes. I begin by pre-teaching a concept (usually something pragmatic like “making a request” or “giving a command”). Next, we brainstorm a list of relevant content words (like “requests one might make in a hotel”). Students are then given 5 to 10 minutes to do their roleplay with a partner. Finally, volunteers are asked to present their roleplay to the class, while I write relevant words / phrases on the board.

I tend to favor roleplays that feature conflict or disagreement because these stimulate more language use. I encourage students to be creative and give a lot of details during their roleplays. Plus, as my students want to be tour guides, they’ll need to be comfortable handling a variety of different situations.

Early in the podcast, I mention a project I did last year asking students to engage in individual activism. I’ll talk about that in more detail in a future podcast.

Please feel free to email me if you have any questions or want to share some ideas of your own.

Tags: ESL activity · listening · podcasts · speaking

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