by Eva buyuksimkesyan / Apr 04, 2011 / 0 comments

EvaB is the ESL Tips Editor for Wandering Educators.


1. Mixed ability dictations
Teacher divides the class into 3 according to students’ abilities. The lower level students get a text with multiple options for certain words or phrases, middle level students get a text with gaps and higher level ones get a blank page to fill when the teacher reads.
2. Running or wall dictation
Teacher posts some texts on the walls and divides her class into groups. A person from each group should go to the wall, try to memorise a part of the text and come to the desk to dictate to her friend. Everybody from the group should go to the wall in turns and come back with a piece of text to desk to be dictated. We did an alternative to this today which I liked very much and thought it can also be a very good pre-reading activity. Teacher posts the texts on the walls and gives handouts with questions to be answered. Students should go to the text read it and find the answer and come to the desk and dictate it.
3. Half the story
Teacher starts reading a story and after a while stops and asks a question and wants the students to write their answers and then waits them to write then she continues dictating the story, pauses and asks another question, students answer and the process continues until the story finishes. In the end, each student has a different story. The stories can be displayed on the walls or teacher can ask them to find which one is the best. I think this one is a great pre-writing activity for narratives. Before we ask the students to produce their own stories we can provide an example with variety of linking words and then maybe we can talk about how it was paragraphed, which conjunctions or tenses were used.
4. Cheating dictation
This is so challenging. Teacher reads the story at a normal speed without any pause. Students shouldn’t ask any questions while the teacher reads. The teacher won’t stop and repeat any word. When the teacher finishes the story, students in groups try to fill in the missing parts that they couldn’t catch. Then the teacher reads slowly and students check their texts.