For native speakers, we are accustomed to speak quickly when talking with people in daily life, such as using a lot of abbreviations and continuous reading (Liaison) in conversations. But for non-native speakers (English as a second foreign language), they may not be able to follow you when you speak English at a very fast speed. Long sentences with complex structures do not help them learn a new language, even if they seem advanced. While simple, rhythmic sentences can help them master it faster and better.
Here are some skills helping ESL teachers to develop clear and confident speaking.
[Recommended Reading: How to Dress as ESL Teachers in China]
Speaking slowly and clearly
Listening to a foreign language is not just keeping up with the pronunciation, but students not only need to recognize and recall each word in the sentence, but also remember the word/phrase collocation rules and sentence structure, and combine all these factors correctly to understand a sentence and give a respond.
All the analysis processes will be carried out in the students' brains at the same time. Slow and clear speech can reduce the burden of their brains.
Give students time to respond
Giving students time to respond and evaluating their responses is an important way to see if they really understand what you are saying. Don't think this is a waste of time even if you just used some simple words and grammar to express your idea or explain a new concept. People are used to using their own standards and abilities to criticize how difficult things are, which is very ineffective for students to learn a new language.
Keep it simple
Keep it in your mind all the time, your students are learning the basics of a new language, so it’s unnecessary to use advanced words, slang and complex sentence structures when you are talking with your students. Your primary goal should be to make students understand what you are saying, so that they can respond to your questions/conversations.
In addition, if you have to use a new word or phrase to express what you want to say, please make a compensatory explanation for your sentence, otherwise your students will feel overwhelmed by these “newcomers”.
As native an English speakers and English teachers, we need to put our feet into our students’ shoes. Perhaps our nature drives us to express ourselves in a way that we feel comfortable with (especially our favorite abbreviations and liaison), but for the sake of the students' studying, trying to pronounce each sound slowly and clearly, give the students time to respond, and keep it simple.