Posted in Conversation Classes, Exam Preparation Class, Uncategorized

CAE Speaking Part 2: Task-based Approach

Image result for cae part 2

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This is a task-based lesson plan to help CAE students complete part 2 of the speaking exam in which they must compare and contrast two of three pictures. Big thanks to my colleague Raquel Gomez for her help with the development of this lesson plan. You can download the student handout, pictures, teacher’s notes and audio files below:

cae-speaking-part-2-teachers-notes

cae-part-2-pictures

cae-speaking-part-2-student-handout-1

Audio Files

Teacher’s Notes

First Attempt

Choose a set of part 2 pictures from your text book, put students in pairs and have them record themselves comparing two of the pictures for a minute. Give students no guidance as to the language they should use. While they are doing this, monitor them and make a note of the structures they are using.

Now have students listen back to their recording in pairs and evaluate it. This is likely to make them a little uncomfortable, no one likes the sound of their own voice recorded, but tell them to go for it.

Language Focus

Follow the exercises below, which are focused on improving students’ performance in this task.

Project “CAE part 2 pictures” onto the board. Have “CAE Speaking part 2 audio” ready to play.

Comprehension

Listen to the candidate talking completing part 2 and answer the questions:

Play audio through once and have sts answer in pairs.

  1. Which two pictures does he talk about?
  2. What does he say the people in the pictures are doing?
  3. How does he think they are feeling?
  4. Which situation does he prefer?

Text Completion

Listen again and complete the text.

Play audio through once, then again, stopping after each gap to check understanding.

In the first picture at the bottom we can see a couple who seem to be camping. Maybe up a mountain, they seem to have a camp fire and their tent set up and I think they’re roasting marshmallows. They definitely seem to be having a good time. They might have been walking all day and then they’ve finally finished and set up their tent, now they’re sitting down to enjoy some nice hot food.

In contrast, in the other photo we can see a man who seems to be working. I think he’s a builder, it looks as if he’s helping to build a house. His feelings are probably quite different to the couple in the other photo because he’s at work obviously so it’s probably nowhere near as enjoyable as the activity the other couple are doing.

But maybe working outside isn’t as bad as working in an office so he might be happy about that. For me personally, I’d rather be with the couple here camping on the mountain than at work definitely.

Pronunciation – Connected Speech

Play audio of individual sentences; have sts practice repeating them in pairs.

Listen to the expressions again and practise saying them with a partner

  • It looks as if he’s helping to build a house.

Looks as if he’s – /lʊks əz-ɪf-iːz/ – all connected and “h” from “he’s” disappears

  • They might have been walking all day.

Might have been – /maɪt əv bin/ – “have” very weak /əv/ “been” sounds like “bin”

  • A couple who seem to be camping

Seem to be – /siːm tə bi:/ – weak form of “to” /tə/

Second Attempt

Now students attempt the task again, recording themselves a second time. Again monitor and make a note of the structures. Then have students compare their two attempts. Board all of the language from the two attempts and encourage students to notice the changes.

Posted in Conversation Classes, Exam Preparation Class

Get Organised! Collaborative Speaking Tasks

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This is a speaking lesson plan designed for teenagers that focuses on various exponents of suggesting, offering, agreeing and disagreeing. The main aim of the lesson is for students to improve their collaborative speaking skills, it will work well as preparation for FCE/CAE speaking exams. You will need the powerpoint and teacher’s notes below:

Get Organised!! – Powerpoint

Get organised Teachers notes

Teacher’s notes

The class is loosely based on Willis’s Task Based Learning in that students are given the opportunity to repeatedly practice a similar task and hopefully internalise some useful exponents for collaborative speaking.

Put students into groups of 3, it would also work with pairs but 3s are ideal. The idea is that groups perform the tasks separately and afterwards compare their decisions in a mini-presentation.

Show the 2nd slide of the power point. Clear up any doubts about the different exponents on the left.Then have students perform the task in their groups, encourage them to use a range of expressions and to be imaginative. Monitor and board any vocabulary they need, or any issues they have with the form or pronunciation of the exponents. Groups then feed back in open class.

Note: This is a good opportunity to teach the difference between “will” for decisions in the moment of speaking and “be going to” for a future intention. Students will discuss the different options using will:

“We’ll have the party on Friday so we can stay up late.”

“Yeah, that’s a good idea.”

Then when the time comes to present their decisions to class they will change to “be going to.”

“We’re going to have the party on Friday so we can stay up late.”

Then students go back to their groups and repeat with the next task but trying to bear any corrections you boarded during the first task in mind. Again groups feed back in open class and compare and contrast their ideas.

For the remainder of the tasks on the powerpoint the exponents are hidden initially but can be shown with a click of the mouse or the right arrow key. They idea is that you gradually phase out having the exponents on the board in the hope that they continue to use them from memory.

Follow up

Students could write an FCE/CAE style report on one of the events they have organised. It could either be a report after the fact stating the strengths and weaknesses of the event or a proposal for a future event putting forward different ideas and making recommendations.