Ольга Николаевна
Группа:Команда портала


Казахстан, Мангистауская область, г. Жанаозен

Жанаозенская школа-гимназия

Учитель английского языка

Раметулла Злиха Максуткызы


Analysis is the heart of making sense of your experience with action research. It always begins with your data. Data never speak for themselves. Your mind is the most important analytical tool that you have. Two major sources of supports are the data you have collected and others have learned about this topic.

For many years I have been teaching English as a foreign language to different age groups and at various levels of proficiency.Most of the activities have been developed during the language teaching and tried out in several versions. Activities have to be adapted with a group of learners in mind and teachers can make their own changes to suit the needs of particular groups. This article’s main function lies in offering many different kinds of exercises to complement traditional foreign language lessons and make them more interesting and lively. I have been guided by several principles in developing and selecting activities, and I would like to discuss these briefly in turn: message-oriented communication, learner-centered activities, active learning, cooperation and empathy.

Two devices help the teacher in making up communicative activities: information gap and opinion gap. Information gap exercises force the participants to exchange information in order to find a solution. Examples of information gap exercises can be guessing games, jigsaw tasks and problem-solving activities. Opinion gaps are created by exercises incorporating controversial texts or ideas, which require the participants to describe and perhaps defend their views on these ideas. Another type of opinion-gap activity can be organized by letting the participants share their feelings about an experience they have in common. Opinion-gap activities of the first type are included in sections: ranking exercises, values clarification techniques and thinking strategies, discussion games. [3, 4-p]

For learners who are studying English in a non-English-speaking setting it is very important to experience real communicative situations in which they learn to express their own views and attitudes, and in which they are taken seriously as people.

Learning is more effective if the learners are actively involved in the process. The degree of learner activity depends, among other things, on the type of material they are working on.

Setting up an opinion poll in the classroom is a second, less ambitious vehicle for active learner participation; it makes students interview each other; it literally gets them out of their seats and – this is very important – it culminates in a final product which everybody has helped to produce. Further devices to make learners more active are games, fun and imagination and group puzzles.

The impact of foreign languages learning on the shaping of the learner’s personalities slowly being recognized. That is why foreign language teaching – just like many other subjects – plays an important part in education towards cooperation and empathy.

Quite an important factor in education towards cooperation is the teacher’s attitude. If she favours a cooperative style of teaching generally and does not shy away from the greater workload connected with group work or projects, then the conditions for learning to cooperate are good.

To my mind, however, it is far more important that the activities train the students to use their knowledge of the foreign languages flexible. They have to get their meaning across in order to do the exercise and will need to utilize every scrap of skill and knowledge they possess. Fostering this flexibility in the foreign language seems to me just as vital as trying to prepare for all communicative situations that many arise.

The importance of the atmosphere within the class of group, the teacher’s role, and ways of organizing discussions, as well as giving hints of the selection and use of the activities in class are valuable things for both teachers and learners.

Many of the activities are focused on the individual learner. Students are asked to tell the others about their feelings, likes or dislikes. They are also asked to judge their own feelings and let themselves be interviewed by others. Speaking about oneself is not something that everyone does with ease. It becomes impossible, even for the most extrovert person, if the atmosphere in a group is hostile and the learner concerned is afraid of being ridiculed or mocked. The first essential requirement for the use of learner-centre activities is a relaxed and friendly atmosphere in the group.  Only then can the aims of these activities be achieved: cooperation and the growth of understanding.

The teacher may simulate a good atmosphere by introducing both warming-up exercises and jigsaw tasks. Even in a class where the students know each other well, certain activities may take on threatening features for individual students. In order to avoid any kind of embarrassment or ill feeling, the teacher should say that anyone may refuse to answer a personal question without having to give any reason or explanation.

Whatever method is chosen, the teacher should be careful not to correct students’ errors too frequently. Being interrupted and corrected makes the students hesitant and insecure in their speech when they should really be practicing communication. It seems far better for the teacher to use the activities for observation and to help only when help is demanded by the students themselves; even they should be encouraged to overcome their difficulties by finding  alternative ways of expressing  what they want to say.

When people have to work together in a group it is advisable that they get to know each other a little at the beginning. Once they have talked to each other in an introductory exercise they will be less reluctant to cooperate in further activities. One of the pre-requisites of cooperation is knowingthe other people’s names. A second one is having some idea of what individual members of the group are interested in.“In dialogue, participant children (and their teachers) are equal partners striving to reach an agreed outcome and trying out and developing what Mercer (2000) has described as the joint construction of knowledge of becoming involved a process of  ‘interthinking’.  Interthinking can be achieved through dialogue with pupils, however pupils can do it with each other in a process of joint enquiry. [1, 267-p]


Step 1: Each student writes his full name on a piece of paper. All the papers are collected and redistributed so that everyone receives the name of a person he does not know.

Step 2: Everyone walks around the room and tries to find the person whose name he holds. Simple questions can be asked, e.g. ‘Is your name…?’ ‘Are you…?’

Step 3: When everyone has found his partner, he introduces him to the group and asks him a few questions  about his family, background, hobbies, etc.


Step 1:  The students are grouped in pairs and now interview each other in order to fill in the blanks on the identity card.

Step 2: Each student introduces his partner to the class using the identity card as a memory aid.



Three things I like:



Three things I don’t like:


Something I’d like to do


Step 1: On a piece of paper each student writes down three adjectives which he feels describe himself. All the paper are collected.

Step 2: The teacher reads out the papers one after the other. With each set of adjectives the group speculates who wrote them. The student concerned should be free to remain anonymous.

4. CHOOSING PICTURES                                                                                      

Step 1: All the pictures are put on the table. Each student chooses two: one picture of something he likes; one of something he dislikes.

Step 2: Each student shows the two pictures to the class and explains why he likes or dislikes them.


For many activities it is necessary to divide the whole class into pairs or groups. In some cases it is possible to let students find their own partners.

  1. Proverb matching

Each student receives half a proverb card and has to find the student holding the other half. Together they have to think of a story/situation which illustrates their proverb, so that the others may guess the proverb.And then they find the equivalents of proverbs in Kazakh or Russian.


When the cat’s away

the mice will play.

A new broom

sweeps clean.  

A bad workman  

always blames his tools. 

Where there’s a will

there’s a way.  

A bird in the hand

is worth two in the bush. 


  1. Sentences matching


Rapunzel was shut up in a tower

by a wicked witch when she was twelve years old.

The witch would climb up her beautiful           long, fair, plaited hair

as if it was a ladder.

He wasn’t killed

but his eyes were scratched out by the thorns.

Two of her tears fell upon his eyes

and they immediately grew better and he was able to see again.

 Picture matching

 Word matching










 Personality matching










 6. Object matching: Means of transport









a rose

a thistle

a shamrock

A daffodil

 Other possibilitiesare: pets, furniture, drinks, clothes, buildings, flowers, etc.

7. Country and product(s) matching





New Zealand



Alternatively, capitals and flags may be added for the forming of groups.

8. Job and tool(s) matching














There are innumerable further possibilities. Those mentioned here should give the teacher some ideas. Since the material used is not thrown away, the time spent preparing a few sets of pairing/ grouping cards is time well spent.


   In the foreign languageclassroom interviews are useful not only because they force students to listen carefully but also because they are so versatile in their subject matter. If everyone interviews his neighbor all students are practicing the foreign language at the same time.

   Since the students chances of asking a lot of questions are not very good in ‘language-oriented’ lessons, interviews are a good compensation. Barnes (1971) established that the way in which language is used in classroom has a major impact on pupil’s learning. Barnes demonstrated that pupils have the potential to learn not only by listening passively to the teacher, but to verbalizing, by talking, by discussion and arguing. [1, 267-p]


For activities in which question forms are practicedchildren engage in exploratory talk, they are almost certain to be working in a small group with peers. They will be sharing a problem and constructing meaning together; exchanging ideas and opinions, considering and evaluating each other’s ideas, building up shared knowledge and understanding. In other words, children are thinking together. When children engage in exploratory talk we can hear them thinking aloud: hypothesizing and speculating.  

  1. What would happen if…?

Every students receives one or two slips of paper with sentences like these on them

What would happen

If people could get a driving licence at 14?

If girls had to do military service?

If children over 10 were allowed to vote?

If headmasters had to be elected by teachers and pupils?

If it rained every day of your holiday?

If you were not able to remember numbers?

If you could not sleep at night?

  1. Go and find out

Step 1: Each student receives a task and a list of the names of all the other students (in small groups where students know each other the list of names of not necessary).

  Step 2: Each student now questions everybody else, according to his task. He writes the answers down, and crosses off the list the names of the people he has asked.

  Step: When everybody has finished asking, each student reads out his question /task and reports his findings.

Eg. Who knows what a kiwi is and where it lives

Problem-solving activities have many advantages, which shouldn’t be ignored. While talking about the problem, students use the target language and improve their communicative skills. They learn to interact with others as they discuss solutions and outcomes of the solution.In problem solving activities, the problems may be based on real or imaginary situations, and students are expected to find possible solutions for the problems.They learn to negotiate when they try to agree on different points of the solution, thus they develop critical thinking skills:


Students prepare background information on a given current- events topic. One student acts as the talk show host and leads a panel discussion and question-and-answer period. The rest of the class participates in the question-and-answer session with the audience.[2, 195-p] 


Have the students tell the class, one at a time, what they want to do on their first job. They should identify the type of the work, something about what it entails, and why they want to do it. They should also tell what skills are needed to do the job and how they plan to prepare for it if they don’t have the skills.

In conclusion, such kind of activities provide favorable usages for extended communicative practice. They are motivating and create a meaningful context for language usage. The application of such activities increases cooperation and competition in the classroom and stimulates students’ interest to the learning process.


            Бұл мақалада түрлі деңгейдегі диалогтік іс-әрекеттердің оқушылардың қызығушылығын тудырып қана қоймай, сонымен бірге тілдік қарым-қатынастың дамуына және оқушылардың сыни тұрғыдан ойлауы,  қарсы пікір айтуы, баламалы шешімдерді қабылдауға, қоғамдық әрекеттерге баулуға, сондай-ақ басқалардың да сыни тұрғыдан ойлауын дамытуға өз үлесін қосатын жаңа тәсілдердің тиімділігі зерделенеді.


В этой статье используются разные уровни диалогических отношений, возникновения новых интересов, а также развития языковых взаимоотношении и критического мышления учащихся, его дискуссия, решения проблемных вопросов, воспитание общественной деятельности, эффективное использование новых интерактивных методов.


Those mentioned activities in this article should give the teachers some ideas that in dialogic interactions pupils are not only interested in speaking, but think critically about solving problems, constructing meaning together, exchanging ideas and opinions, considering and evaluating each other’s ideas, and creative thinking ways of others.


[1] Handbook for Teacher. Third (basic) level

[2]  Kress, Jacqueline E. The ESL Teacher’s book of lists. The USA, 1993

[3] Friederike Klippel. Communicative fluency activities for language teaching. CambridgeUniversityPress, 2002

[4]Ким И.А.Филологические науки/1.Методика преподавания языка и литературы

Таразский государственный университет имени М.Х. Дулати, Казахстан

Problem-solving activities in teaching English


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