The 3 p’s of a speaking skills syllabus Barry Cusack Bell Educational Services firstname.lastname@example.org
The upper intermediate learner History Skills Needs: • intelligibility in semi-formal situations • sustained pronunciation quality
Top Down? Bottom Up? • Tone unit • Sentence stress • Word stress • Sounds
Presentation controlled Practice semi-controlled Free stage/Production free
Poetry • Plays • Presentations
Intelligibility • Targets • Teacher interventions
Poems • Special features • Respected enables ….
No sun, no moon, No morn, no noon, No dawn, no dusk, no proper time of day No warmth, no cheerfulness, no healthful ease, No comfortable feel in any member, No shade, no shine, no butterflies, no bees, No fruits, no flowers, no leaves, no birds -
November • Teacher reads out the lines • One student listens and marks phrases - other students observe • Students repeat phrases as marked • Interventions by teacher – bottom-up and top-down • Set targets clearly, slowly, loudly, seriously • Pairs practice • Demonstration
Meet the challenge • Use the motivation and social convention • Use the artefact
A mini-play Colin: He’ll probably tell me I’ve got to stop. Angela: Stop what? Colin: Drinking. Says I’m too fat. I told him that’s because he made me give up smoking. You’re bound to put on a bit of weight if you give up smoking. Stands to reason. You can’t have it both ways. Angela: I know. At least you got rid of that cough, though. I’d rather have you fat than having that cough. Used to drive me mad. Colin: Who are you calling fat? Angela: Well you’ve got to admit you are a bit on the chubby side these days.
In what ways is a mini-play “less controlled” than a poem?
plays • Lines are longer • Phrasing less obvious • Decisions
Sources of plays and sketches • Mini-plays by Tim Bowen and Liz Plampton Macmillan Publishers on onestopenglish.com • One million tiny plays about Britain Craig Taylor, The Guardian
The train • Short sections • Set targets - a demonstration, clearly, slowly, loudly, seriously • Rehearsal in pairs – T. assists, encouraging phrasing • Student demonstration – 3 sections, 3 pairs • Informal peer assessment
Mini-plays summary • targets! • after poetry, before presentations • revision of phrasing to achieve intelligibility • rehearsing time • success!
Presentations • stand up and say something • formal targets • groups of 3 • part-scripted – at start, at end • rehearsal • formal peer assessment
Presentation task • Where to get healthy and fit • www.therapy-centre.net/index.php • www.fitnessfirst.co.uk • www.thecircusspace.co.uk • www.ragdalehall.co.uk • www.jumeirah.com/en/Hotels-and-Resorts/Destinations/London/Jumeirah-Carlton-Tower/Health-Spa/
Formal Peer Assessment Score 0/1/2 Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 • Clearly • Slowly • Loudly • Took the task seriously
Scoring examples • Spoke loudly 0 I could not hear the presentation 1 I could hear most of the presentation 2 I could hear all of the presentation • Took the task seriously 0 They laughed mostly 1 Usually serious 2 Serious at all times
Findings • Scoring taken seriously • Students rise to the challenge • The criteria are internalized • The criteria are referred to later • Standards can start to rise