Today’s blog post is all about speaking and listening activities! We all try to incorporate daily speaking and listening activities into our classrooms. However, sometimes it can be hard to fit them into our daily schedule!
Figure out your grade level expectations
The Common Core State Standards has 6 standards (and a few sub-standards) that cover speaking and listening skills. They are divided into two sections. One that covers comprehension and collaboration along with presentation of knowledge and ideas.
The main goal of the speaking and listening skills is for students to be able to clearly communicate their understanding of information and ideas. They need to be able to listen intentionally and practice respectful communication.
Here are the links to your grade level to check them out:
Determine when it’ll work in your schedule
Speaking and listening skills are essential to developing a well-rounded literacy understanding. Luckily, there are some great ways to easily incorporate them into your classrooms daily. Here are a few options:
First, morning meetings are wonderful additions to your daily instruction. They allow you and your students to successfully communicate your learning, set daily goals, and so much more! Morning meetings have built in opportunities for speaking and listening activities.
Second, inserting a quick S&L mini-lesson before your ELA block will help instruct and redirect students’ communication. This can allow students to use intentional speaking and listening skills throughout the ELA block, checking back in at the end.
Third, transition times. Any 5-10 minutes slot of time in your day is the perfect time for a quick speaking and listening activity. This could be when transition to lunch, or specials, or even when packing up!
Start by teaching how to respectfully discuss topics
An introduction to speaking and listening should involve explicit instruction. Using an anchor chart, discuss respectful and intentional conversations. Provide lots of opportunities for modeling and role-playing. Then, come back to the anchor charts throughout the year in order to reset intentions and build speaking and listening skills.
Sometimes, students don’t have enough experience with conversations. They may not know how to start one or add information to one. So, I like to use sentence stems. Again, lots of modeling and practice can help students increase their conversational vocabulary.
Role-playing is a fun way to build skills, too. Students can use these speaker/listener cards to determine who is doing what during a conversation. After, when the speaker is finished, they will trade cards and become the listener. This way they are practicing both roles!
Pull daily 5-10 minute activities
Speaking and listening activities can also be a quick discussion game. Using these sentence starters, students can add information and practice their skills.
Listening comprehension can also be shown through writing and drawing. In order to evaluate if a student has adequate listening comprehension, have them draw or write their understanding! One way is through a partner activity where student 1 must describe a story using an event card prompt. At the same time, student 2 must listen closely, then, draw Student 1’s story by visualizing what they’ve heard.
Find highly engaging topics your kids want to talk about
Additionally, the CCSS asks for comprehension regarding texts. Students will need to be able to communicate their comprehension of literature and informational texts. I like to use highly engaging texts and topics. In this instance, it is because it will really get the conversation going! Add some sentence starters/prompts and your kiddos will be sparking up great conversations!
If students are able to orally tell a story, this is a great addition to their skills! Story building is an awesome speaking and listening activity. It allows students to communicate and develop a story at the same time. You may provide them with the characters, setting, or even a few of the events. Then, let them build their story around it!
Furthermore, story telling is an excellent S&L skill that will help improve students’ writing skills. Students can tell a story using prompted information and then have a partner retell or write the story.
Looking for structured resources for your grade?
- Kindergarten Speaking and Listening Unit
- First Grade Speaking and Listening Unit
- Second Grade Speaking and Listening Unit
- Third Grade Speaking and Listening Unit
- Fourth Grade Speaking and Listening Unit
Thanks for reading this blog post all about Speaking and Listening Activities. I hope it filled your brain with ideas on how to incorporate it easily into your daily lessons!