Conversation for Competent Beginners
A collection of 26 of my best English conversation lesson handouts. Each page shows speaking with clear examples of natural communication. Lessons are easy to teach and practice. They include language points like asking follow-up questions and adding extra information. Each one has lots of great examples, drills, and of course, plenty of amazing images!
Right now, teachers around the world are using this book with students of all ages. It’s perfect for students already a little familiar with English and ready to have short, independent conversations. The pages are also easy to print or copy.
I’m sure you and your students are going to love it!
Conversation lessons versus “free talk”
Of course, language teachers want students to talk as much as possible in the target language. A successful conversation class isn’t hard to manage. Picka. topic, tell the students to talk about it. As they talk, observe, assist, correct errors, guide speaking techniques. Depending on the size of the group you may choose different ways to give that feedback or how to guide technique. But a successful class usually involves students in control of communication.
Now, imagine a class where the teacher gave a topic, and the students had a discussion. Imagine the teacher just sitting around not doing anything. Or worse, imagine the teacher just talking about themselves the whole time. That’s what I call a “free talk” lesson, and it’s a waste of time.
The best teachers find a balance between independent student action and teacher input. They create chances for students to have meaningful discussion even at a simple level. This means helping learners express themselves more clearly each time they come to class. These teachers don’t overuse materials and don’t give too much free time either.
In most classes I try to limit the material time to about ten minutes. On the best days, I just give it as homework or review. So as you use this book in your class, keep the ultimate goal of student improvement in mind. The material is only a supplement to your lesson.
And as I always say, do good, help others, have fun.