Research shows that teaching children how to talk effectively can have a profound effect on learning outcomes, yet many schools aren’t giving oracy skills the attention they deserve, finds Dan Worth
How much talk is there in your classroom? Not low-level chatter, but time given by you for pupils to speak their minds, answer questions, discuss lesson content and debate with each other? For some teachers, the answer will be “most of the lesson”; for others, it will be “as little as possible”; and some might ask: “Does it really matter?”
Neil Mercer, emeritus professor of education in the Faculty of Education at the University of Cambridge and director of Oracy Cambridge in the Hughes Hall Centre for Effective Spoken Communication, believes it does matter. A lot.
He concedes that the ...