Increasing oral participation in the EFL classroom is one the toughest challenges we teachers have to face. However, we already know that motivation is one of the key factors to enhance interaction. So we keep looking for material that motivates our students to talk about it and this might take hours of research.
But sometimes we miss the wood for the trees…Which brings me to the topic of this post. My students and I talked about the American school system and there were so many questions I didn’t have answers to, which was really annoying and unsatisfying. And later when searching for texts that might have the answers, I was even less satisfied with what I found. Then I thought that only an American could actually tell my students about it, so I asked my good friend from Texas to answer a few questions and send it to me as a video.
The students’ responses were amazing. Not only were their proud and excited about the fact that he answered their questions, but also did they immediately respond and react to his statements since they had already contemplated about those aspects when formulating the questions and could then further converse about and discuss them.
Again I was taught by my students that actually listening to their questions and involving them already in the process of planning the lessons is the best way to meet their needs and interests. And if you have a good friend from Texas, good and authentic material is easily created.