In their text-book "Gateway To English (1)"(Unit One, page 11), 1ère Bac students are asked to discuss some questions, and then share their ideas with the whole class. This type of exercise can be exploited to lead into writing on previously prepared data. The teacher can seize the opportunity at the end of the activity to launch a writing assignment on that basis, and the result will be the beam of light at the end of the dark tunnel which most of the learners were in need to recover and start engaging into writing fearlessly.
The questions are:
I'm not here to talk about the quality and appropriateness of the questions. I'll take them as they are because they serve a great purpose vis-à-vis the writing skill. They are generally motivating for the learners to take a large step on the one-thousand miles road of writing. These questions can activate brain storming which allows the students to obtain enough material to use in their talks. Their talks subsequently turn to become paragraphs which could be elegantly built for public speaking the same as for a written task.
This activity can be more interesting if the teacher engages the learners to deliver the answers to those questions in a short global abrupt talk to the whole class. In this case, they have to organize their answers in one paragraph speech.
The students read the questions and try to answer them on a separate sheet of paper. After that, the teacher asks the students to write their answers on the Board.
The answers would roughly look something like this:
Because these answers are not true for everyone, they at least pave the way to learn how to transfer information to write a paragraph. To my astonishment, some students don't use the internet.
The above answers on the board can be exploited to make a paragraph out of already existing information; the teacher can help the students later to make it personal for every single student.
The students read the answers without interruption; then the teacher incites the students to find words they have learnt during the Common Core level to boost and ameliorate their paragraph,
I usually use the internet at home or at the cybercafé for studying or for doing some research. I think many young people generally go to the cybercafé to chat with their friends about
This is far enough for them at this stage, but the teacher can provide them with more easy expressions to make the paragraph stronger and enjoyable for their audience.
I usually use the internet at home or at the cybercafé for studying or doing some research. I think many young people generally go to the cybercafé to chat with their friends about unimportant or stupid things. They use their mother tongue, but the problem is that they write it in letters and numbers. As for me, I prefer to use English to chat with foreigners.
When the time comes for them to share it with their class-mates, there is surely some confidence and a lot of audacity. I reckon this is the kind of activity that can spark learning writing, speaking and - even one day - negotiating meaning.