I want to give a gold star to two SSiW learners Jason and Nicky. Last night we had a couple of people absent (not to mention the three people who have defected to the group learning through the new SSiW course) and we were down to two in our intermediate learners in our Melbourne Welsh class. I had been teaching the beginners while our other teacher was away so I had a few ideas for the class but wanted to start off with a simple exercise to see where people were at. The group are currently up to lesson 6, course two and have also been working through the days of the week vocab units.
I pulled out a some flash cards and said, I’m going to ask you, what you did on Monday morning? You are going to pick up a card and tell me what you did. But we are not going to end there we are going to use it as a spring board for a conversation. Well, they were still talking an hour and a half later, with me supplying words and asking questions, with only a few instances of resorting to English.
I said: you don’t need lessons and exercises anymore. You are ready for conversation.
So, here is my shout out. People who lead meet ups. What ideas can you give me for facilitating and promoting discussion? I have a list of topics from Guy in Tasmania. A bunch of images to keep the ball rolling. Any other ideas? Resources? What have people found useful?
What did you do last week?
What are you doing this weekend?
What was your first job and how did you get it?
Tell us about your family.
Tell us about your favourite book, film, football team, restaurant.
Tell us about a time you were in hospital.
Follow ups from previous weeks such as
Have your parents bought their new house yet?
Did you book the holiday you were talking about last week?
How did the exercise bootcamp go?
What did you watch on TV?
I feel really empowered after that session - as I said, I was feeling a little frustrated that I could understand a great deal but struggled to put a sentence together! But really it was just needing to have a something to talk about and surprising myself when it just came flowing out.
It has motivated me to force myself back into my practicing routine - and I am suddenly finding myself just coming out with random Welsh sentences during the day.