The official website of educator Jack C Richards

Encouraging Students


Submitted by Mohammad Javad Zare, Iran

How can I encourage students who have very little spoken, English, to develop their communication skills?

Dr. Richards responds:

In this case I would suggest the use of worksheets with a topic on each sheet and a set of 10- 15 simple questions on the topic (e.g. sport, music, hobbies etc.) First guide them through the questions and suggest possible answers or elicit answers form the class. They can practice in pairs. Encourage them to be creative in their answers. As they develop more confidence you can encourage them to ask follow up questions related to each question. Remember to first model the kind of answers you think they can manage, gradually removing teacher support as they develop their skills. They can also add their own questions to the list of questions you provide.