The development of oral skills can be only done in an environment where the student is comfortable, in the presence of a congenial atmosphere and among peers. The learners need to be absolutely sure that there will be no ridicule, no retribution and no reprisals for making mistakes and that they are free to make mistakes. Only this confidence can make the student free to communicate and interact. When teaching learners to develop oral skills, the role of the teacher is significant only in the background and the entire process of developing oral skills in learners focus on the learner and not the teacher. The teacher should be aware of the various proceedings taking place in the entire activity that is being conducted for the development of oral skills and remain in the background but must have a complete control of the situation in the front without making her presence conspicuous.
Role of the Teacher in Presenting the Activity:
The teacher is significant at this stage as the learners need to understand what the activity is, how to go about conducting it and what the materials to be used are. Also the students are made to understand the behavioural norms that must be abided by if the activity is taking place within the precincts of the classroom so that they do not disturb the neighbouring classes.
The instruction given by the teacher should be clear and precise and with no elaborate speeches. The instructions should be given right at the beginning the class so that the complete attention of the students can be caught. Any distribution of materials, delegation of roles and assigning or responsibilities should be done only after the instructions have been given.
The Process of the Activity:
The various procedures involved in the activity should be planned out before the activity actually begins. It is best to conduct any activity that enhances oral skills in the company of two or more teachers as team teaching provides varying perspectives which can be discussed later to come to a conclusion regarding the learning of each and every learner in the group. Though the groups involved in the activity are extremely animated busy with it, it is the teacher’s role that is most significant, albeit, in the background. The teacher should be noting down the various proceedings with the note on who is speaking the most, the least and who are the students making an effort to speak. The teachers also need to monitor the interest levels of the group and if she finds a group less involved than others, she can motivate the group with her involvements with that particular group. Some of the points that the teacher can note down include, peer correction, peer motivation, use of native language, grammatical errors, and also find out the inherent qualities of the students. Identifying leadership qualities in some and meticulousness in others are some of the other aspects.
In conclusion, the teacher can make use of the next class to discuss the outcome of the group activity and also find out from the learners, about their experiences in being involved in the activity.