Conversation-Based Learning: The Right Method for the Right Goal
Stop the insanity. Grammar-based English is failing another generation of students. With videos and ten years of data, this presentation details conversation-based learning from first-day placement test to last-day improvement data. The method is writing for speaking. Writing before speaking improves accuracy; speaking to many partners improves fluency. Students sit in pairs and have "speed dating" conversations. They get a new topic every week and a new partner every seven minutes. Everybody speaks half the time, and half the time their partner is a better speaker. The self-transcribed conversation test completes the system. Students get extensive personal feedback, and teachers get accurate grading and improvement data. In short: students write what they say, talk about what they wrote, transcribe what they said, and correct their own mistakes. Students do all the work. Good. An education is preparation for life, and life is not a grammar test.