ESL Activity - Listening and Predicting...

We all know that being able to predict what comes next in a story is a major part of listening and comprehension when learning a foreign language. And unfortunately, this is what many ESL students seem to have the greatest trouble with. I use this great method to get my entire class involved in the process. But be aware! Even your shyest students will pipe in with this one!

Start by finding an interesting mystery. I write my own, but if you’re not creative that way, you can find short mysteries all over the Internet. Once you either write or find one, you will need to analyze it for logical breaks in the story. For example, if someone in the mystery was murdered, and one of the suspects is giving her alibi, that's a logical break.

You should read the story aloud to your class, and ask the students what they think will happen next each time you come to a logical break in the story. Instruct them to use the information that they've already heard, and then come to a logical conclusion. This lesson usually starts slow, but by the end of the story, everyone in the class is an amateur detective! My students request this lesson over and over again.

By Michelle Simmons