Updated 8 September 2018
Activities in which one student speaks while others listen carefully – something that is at least as important as more interactive tasks like roleplays, especially from Intermediate level. Most worksheets linked to below are also useable with the other kinds of tasks described here. There is also a worksheets index page on this topic with more up to date links here.
Inside Out-style monologue tasks
The secret to every speaking task is to make sure the person who is being spoken to really has to listen. You can easily combine this with help on speaking longer with a list of ten to twenty subtopics or questions on the topic that they have to speak about, e.g. “size” and “shape” for describing an object. Only the person listening has the list, and they tick off things that their partner mentions as they listen. When their partner has completely run out of things to say, they can use the relevant unticked things to ask follow up questions, e.g. “When did you buy it?” from “purchase”.
I love this activity, which I basically stole from the “Anecdote” sections from the Inside Out books, as you can use it for basically any topic (including tying in with grammar points) and it makes up for the question and short answer format of so many other TEFL games and tasks. Examples of my uses include:
Social issues extended speaking (starting with a simpler task)
Students can also be given the challenge of coming up with their own additional questions:
Extended speaking with interrupting
An extension of this idea is to let them (politely) interrupt each other and then tot up who spoke most about the topic.
Speak as long as you can tasks
A more game-based task is to get them to speak as long as they can on a topic and then give points for the length of speaking minus a deduction for silence during it. For example you can play it as a board game with a different topic on each square, with students moving six squares for three minutes, five squares for two and a half minutes etc.
You can also do it as a card game, with students being able to take one card for each 30 second period that they speak, then being able to choose between all the cards in their hand for your their next topic:
or just give them points for each thirty second period that they speak:
Extended speaking bluff games
Students talk about something for a while and then students ask questions before working out if the whole thing is true, what part or parts were false, or what part or parts were true.
Listen for something your partner forgot
The simplest possible activity- students listen to add something to what their partner said.
As with the ideas above, the important thing is that the person listening should have something specific to listen for, e.g. which invention they will invest in or who they will give the job to.
There are also IELTS Speaking Part Two tasks of course.
Blind student video tasks
Half the students face away from the screen and are given worksheets which they must complete by listening to their partner describe everything that happens and without their partner knowing what kind of information might be relevant.
Talk about it, then analyse it
After doing an extended speaking task, students try to remember something about the language of the prompts
FCE Speaking Part Two tasks
Eiken Level 1 presentations