Students engage in conversation in their classroom on a weekly, daily, monthly basis to help develop their English skills in listening, speaking, reading, writing and grammar. But what is often overlooked is a language activity that focusses on the daily conversations and interactions that students have within the classroom. This includes greetings, asking for help, making small talk and many more classroom conversations.
Students need to be given the proper tools to be able to express themselves and communicate with their classmates and teachers. However, as teachers, we sometimes just expect them to do this on a daily basis without actually teaching them phrases and language that can help them feel confident to participate in class.
Why Students Don’t Participate in Class
As an English teacher with over 10 years experience, I have run into this problem many times. Students aren’t participating or working together. They aren’t taking part in activities or completing the tasks assigned in class. This used to be so frustrating and I felt like their was nothing I could do. However, when I spoke with the students and took time to dig a little deeper, what I realized is, a lot of times the students were struggling to understand what was happening in class, or didn’t feel confident interacting in English with their classmates and even me!
THIS IS A PROBLEM! And it is way more common then we think!
How to Encourage Student Participation and Engagement
So, how do we help students feel comfortable and confident to participate and engage in our classes? We provide them with language and examples or templates to complete activities we set out in our classroom. This makes them feel comfortable and confident to participate and get the most out of class.
Another component of ensuring understanding is making sure to always take the time to properly explain and introduce an activity in class. Clear examples done as a class with examples provided for reference.
In a nutshell, if you want students to work in partners, ask questions, share answers and engage in classroom activities you need to provide them with language and framework to do so!
A great resource I use for language and vocabulary on a variety of subjects is Englishclub.com.
Classroom Language Activity
This is the reason I created an interactive language activity for common conversations in the classroom. I took a look at how students participate in the classroom on a day-to-day basis and wanted to provide them with the vocabulary to do this effectively! With this language activity students interact with common phrases that are used in their class every day to create word posters that they can post around the room and refer to throughout their classes.
This language activity introduces vocabulary and phrases around saying hello, having small talk in the classroom, asking for help, asking for clarification and working with a partner. It gives students language they can use in their classes which makes it helpful for them and gives them confidence to interact.
As a teacher this is invaluable! Teaching the vocabulary and being able to use it instantaneously is key to retaining it. Furthermore, creating posters and conversation templates that students can refer to will help them when they need the phrases in the classroom.
What is great about this activity in particular is that it allows you to use it with any level as you can just choose the vocabulary and language themes that fit the level of your students. You can also adapt it to your specific classroom setting by adding your own vocabulary!
Help your students feel comfortable in your classes by providing them with the vocabulary they need to communicate in class!
A Breakdown of the Classroom Language Activity
- An Introduction activity where students discuss the various situations in pictures displayed online or around the classroom.
- Students identify the different classroom scenarios: saying hello, asking for help, small talk.
- Students sort vocabulary and phrases into the different classroom scenarios
- Students create language posters with the phrases to display around the classroom.
- Students create sample conversations through role-play activities where they activate the phrases and use them in conversation.
For free Poster Templates Go to My FREE Resource Gallery
To purchase the Language in the Classroom Poster Activity pack go to my Premium Lesson Gallery