Dictation is not considered an old-fashioned activity any more. A lot f teachers have discovered that it’s a rich mine for developing learners vocabulary and structural competence. The teacher’s role in modern variations of this activity is no longer considered central. Learners are given more control of the activity.
Here are my previous posts about what dictation is and its variations:
The activity I suggest in this post is another alternative to traditional dictation.
- Write a short text using a limited set of previously taught vocabulary.
- Read the text at natural speed.
- Students are allowed to take notes.
- Read it again, at natural speed.
- Don’t slow down or repeat anything.
- Groups of students try to reconstruct the entire text word for word.
- Allow students to discuss to reconstruct the text.
- Allow students to come up with new words to complete the task if they got stuck on the condition that they don’t change the overall meaning of the text .
- Write the original text on the board
- Tell the students to check if their reconstructed text is similar to the original one.
- If yes, tell them to write the story again in their own words.