Group Talk: An example of how to motivate pupils (particularly boys) and improve oracy in a lower secondary school through small group interaction

Author(s): European Schoolnet
Institution/Organisation: Wildern School, Southampton (UK)


The school is a very large 11-16 mixed comprehensive school of 1800 pupils, serving a residential suburb of Southampton. Because of the school’s ‘overall success in all respects', as stated in a recent government report, it shares its practice with other schools in the area in order to help improve their performance. The languages department has developed Group Talk covering all languages taught (German, French and Spanish) to provide a setting in which pupils can actually enjoy using language in a real situation. The initiative is based on group work involving pupils exchanging opinions and asking each other questions, following some formal teaching input. Pupils, especially boys, clearly enjoy the experience and welcome the opportunity to express their opinions among their peers. Results in examinations have noticeably improved and the method is used as a model for other schools, locally and nationally.

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