ELT Think Tank Home Forums PD Books PD Book – Teaching Speaking Sub-skills: Activities for Improving Speaking by Ken Lackman

  • Author
  • Tatiana GomezTatiana Gomez
    Post count: 57

    When using micro-learning experiences to acquire new skills as a teacher, it’s essential that we not only learn new concepts on teaching and apply them, but that we reflect upon its application and analyze how we can further help our students’ learning process.

    Share your experience throughout this Think Tank by following this model. You don’t have to do this in just one sitting, take your time, reflect and share.

    Before you begin:

    Let us know you’re going to participate in this discussion. Introduce yourself and let us know your expectations of this chapter just by reading the description that was extracted from the website cited below and asnwerins these questions:

    1. Introduce yourself and your goal for this Think Tank. Be sure to write a SMART Goal.
    2. Share at least one idea about how to teach speaking in the classroom.
    3. Based on the author’s introduction do you think it’s important to teach speaking sub-skills? Why?

    Teaching Speaking Sub-skills: Activities for Improving Speaking – Ken Lackman

    “Rather than just have students ‘speak’ in the classroom we should be teaching students specific speaking skills, known as sub-skills or micro skills. Since conversations outside the class are bound to be better learning experiences than those inside the class, rather than trying to duplicate real-world conversations in the classroom, we should be teaching students skills they are not likely to learn outside the classroom. By raising awareness of speaking sub-skills and providing classroom practice with them, we will be providing students with strategies to improve their communication outside the classroom, which is, or should be, the ultimate goal.”

    Lackman, K. (2010). Teaching Speaking Sub-skills: Activities for Improving Speaking[PDF]. Ken Lackman & Associates Educational Consultants. http://www.kenlackman.com/files/speakingsubskillshandout13poland_2_.pdf

    Now, download the ebook and take notes of the parts that most caught your attention. Let us know what you thought by answering the following questions.

    After you read:

    1. Which sub-skill do you teach most often? the least?
    2. Share your favorite activity from the book. Tell us when you’re going to try it out!
    3. Share one game that you used in your classes.
    4. Suggest more books on this topic!


    1. What can you adapt the most in your classroom to make speaking more effective?
    2. How can you balance fluency and accuracy when teaching speaking?

    Now, apply the PTRL (Plan – Teach – Reflect – Learn) model to continue improving your pronunciation teaching competencies. You will now apply what you’ve learned in your lesson planning and share your experience with fellow teachers by following these indications:


    Tell us your goals for this lesson and share your lesson plan. You can upload your sample lesson plans in this Google Drive folder.


    Share how you taught the lesson by uploading some of your students’ outcomes (log, picture, video, etc.). Not sure how to log your students’ outcomes? Here are some ideas.  Share your evidence. 


    Now, it’s time to think about your lesson. Read the questions below and take time to reflect on a personal level your answers. Then write one comprehensive answer where you focus on the most relevant ideas and thoughts you’ve come up with.

    • How did my students respond to that lesson?
    • Was there meaningful student involvement?
    • What aspects of the class were positive? Negative?
    • Are my students willing to take risks?
    • What evidence is there of students learning?
    • Are my students working cooperatively with others?
    • Was I giving enough wait time?
    • What should I do differently tomorrow?


    Share with us one lesson you’ve learned from teaching while using these strategies and how they can further improve your teacher quality.

You must be logged in to reply to this topic.