As a finale to the Conversation Challenge (when time is available) it is possible to conduct one further round of conversations, and have all four group members converse together.
But this time there are no rules, no conditions, it’s total freedom. So, if they wish, students can use their books, talk on any topic, and they can even use their own language. The only constraint is the time limit, which remains the same as for the first three rounds.
Theoretically students could take advantage and just chat away in their mother-tongue. But the reality is different. There will inevitably be some lapses into L1, but there is frequently a surprisingly high level of quality conversational practice. This is probably due in no small part to the non-threatening environment; I find students appreciate a few minutes of autonomy, without the teacher breathing down their necks.
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