Do your IELTS students associate being fluent in English with non-stop talking?
Then you might want to draw their attention to the fact that one of the most noticeable differences between native and nonnative speakers of a language is their so-called ‘HESTITATION PHENOMENA’ (…or lack thereof).
Learners can be taught to use PAUSES more intentionally, as well as other ‘HESITATION DEVICES’, to gain time and confidence while speaking.
Some of these COMPENSATION STRATEGIES include
A) All-purpose words: Extending a general lexical item to broader contexts –for example ‘thing’, ‘thingy’, ‘stuff’
B) Appeal for help: Asking for help from the speaking partner either directly –for example ‘What do you call …?’,
indirectly –for example with rising intonation, pausing, eye contact, etc.
C) Approximation: Using an alternative, often simpler term to express the meaning of the target lexical item –for example ‘ship’ for ‘cruiser’
D) Circumlocution: Describing target words with their function –for example ‘the thing you serve soup with’ for ‘ladle’
E) Nonlinguistic signals: Mime, gesture, facial expression, or sound imitation
F) Prefabricated patterns: Using memorized stock phrases, usually for ‘survival’ purposes –for example ‘How do you say ____?’
G) Time gaining strategies: Using fillers or hesitation devices to fill pauses and to gain time to think –for example ‘well’, ‘uh’, ‘ummm’, ‘as a matter of fact’, etc.
Can you think of any other?
Hi. I’m Fatime. I’m an IELTS Teacher Trainer, helping CELTA-qualified English language teachers become better at teaching SKILLS, as opposed to just testing them.
Check out my courses here:
How to Teach IELTS Listening:
How to Teach IELTS Reading:
How to Teach IELTS Writing:
How to Teach IELTS Speaking: