Use this Verbal Boxing to practice the expressions of giving opinion

(Source: here)

Verbal boxing is a learning technique to practice the expressions of giving opinion. This is Matt Breyer’s idea from www.onestopenglish.com.  The original explanation of the technique can be downloaded here.

Students make groups of four. Like in real boxing, one member will be the boxer and the other students will be the coaching staffs.
In the classroom, the boxer is the spokesman, and the other members in the team will support the spokesman by providing him/her with opinions.

How I adapted this technique into my classroom?


SING AND WRITE: Sing a song and then write a story about it

A few weeks ago, I taught the expression of complimenting to my ten graders and I played James Blunts' You're beautiful to start the lesson. I asked them  to sing the song together and then guessed the topic of the lesson. That was so much fun that my students really enjoyed the lesson.
The next meeting, I taught Narrative but I had no song in my lesson plan. The students kept asking me to play a song. I was so confused that I started thinking to let them sing. But I remembered that I had no song related to the topic. So, I ignored their request.

And then, I kept thinking about it at home. I felt so wrong when I realized that it was a very briliant idea. I should have played them a song and asked them to write a story about the song.


This Question Staircase Helps You Plan Questions about Your Story

Illustration: http://goo.gl/594aKh

Planning effective questions to engage students in building their thinking skills is very important. You have to know how to plan your questions, otherwise your students will be less motivated to think. The questions should not be way too hard or too easy.

The Bloom's Revised Taxonomy of Thinking can really help you with this. Using question staircase which is basically based on the taxonomy, you can differentiate, grade, and sequence the questions from easier to more challenging ones.


How do you commonly check your students'comprehension after they read or listen to or watch a story? I used to give tests either objective tests (multiple choice, true-false, matching, completion) or subjective tests (essay). My students seemed bored so I've recently started to figure out other types of instrument. Therefore, I browsed on the internet, and I found this.

This idea of using story map is not really new. You might have known way earlier than me. However, in this nice occasion, I want to share with you two story maps I have designed and also used in my classroom.