Escola Superior de Tecnologia e Gestão de Lamego/Portugal

either consciously (as a technique in (in psychotherapy accordance with or training) the or unconsciously perceived expectations of society).The term role play refers to the changing of someone·s behaviour to assume a role . OXFORD DICTIONARY .acting out of a particular role.

Jacob Moreno first used this technique in the 1920s with their patients. . As a psychiatrist. he realised that his patients gained more by exploring their problems by acting them than by talking about them. It has been known as a method in education since the late 1940s.

" "role-play simulation. ´game.Crookall and Oxford (1990) used the terms ´simulationµ." "simulation- game." "role-play." and "role-playing game" often interchangeably. .

Simulation is viewed as complex. while in role playing the participant is representing and experiencing some character type known in everyday life (Scarcella and Oxford. Simulations simulate real life situations. 1987). Simulations always include an element of role play (Ladousse. lengthy and quite inflexible. Role playing is viewed as quite simple. . brief and flexible. 1992).

and prepare students to real life situations. working .ROLE PLAY encourages thinking and creativity. lets students expand and practice new language and behavioural skills. intensifies and accelerates learning. . can create the motivation and involvement necessary for learning to occur. improves the skills of initiative. verbalization of opinions. independent thinking. self-awareness. expands values and appreciation of the art of drama. problem-solving. cooperatively in teams. improves communication skills. increases social awareness.

and which increases motivation.Ladousse (2004) indicated that "role play is one of a whole gamut of communicative techniques which develops fluency in language students. He suggested role play to be "perhaps the most flexible technique in the range" of communicative techniques. and with suitable and effective roleplay exercises. . he pointed out that role play encourages peer learning and sharing the responsibility for learning between teacher and student." In addition. which promotes interaction in the classroom. teachers can meet an infinite variety of needs.

.Teacher roles defines the general structure of the role play generally does not actively participate once the structure is set Jones (1982). helping the flow of traffic and avoiding bottlenecks." keeps a quite low profile and students are free to interact with each other spontaneously It is the teacher·s duty to create a safe environment inside the classroom before using role playing as a technique . and controls the event in the same way as a traffic controller..the teacher becomes the Controller. but not telling individuals which way to go. ".

. either to discuss if the goal of the activity was achieved or.Teacher roles Another important aspect is the process of choosing the pairs or groups that will perform the role play. in case the teacher videotaped the activity. The feedback after the activity is an important thing to do. to show students where they made communication effective or less effective. rather the goals defined be the teacher. Students must relate to others so that the social skills are effective. Teachers must also be aware of the students· level so that students won·t be discouraged and their knowledge gap doesn·t turn role playing into an intimidating and difficult activity. The main goal of role playing in class is not the language itself. whether it is a matter of stimulating students· imagination or their speaking.

The effective communication is more important than linguistic accuracy .

work with register.11 factors in role plays 1. Aim (indicates the broader objective of each activity. such as increasing confidence or becoming sensitive to concepts expressed in language. Language (indicates the language the students will need. different skills. reports. 4. such as structures. etc) 3. Time (may depend on whether students need to read articles. functions. Level (indicates the minimum (and sometimes maximum) level at which the activity can be carried out) 2. or intonation patterns) .

Warm-up (involves ideas to focus the students' attention and get them caught up ) 8. preliminary activity 2. Procedure (involves a step-by-step guide to the activity Richards (1985). recommends a six step procedure for role playing: role cards 5. Preparation (indicates anything that needs to be done before class) 7. a model dialogue 3. 1.11 factors in role plays 5. repeating the sequence. for example. learning to perform the role play with the help of role cards 4. how many students should be in each group) 6. and in the latter case. listening to recordings of native speakers performing the role play with . follow-up 6. Organization( describes whether the activity involves pair work or group work.

Remarks (may be of general interest or may be warnings about special difficulties that may arise) 11.Variations (can be used with different types of classes or different levels) . Follow-up (indicates activities that are done after the activity.11 factors in role plays 9. perhaps as homework) 10.

so an escape plan must be implemented quickly. ." The "Island Game" is both an extended icebreaker and collective decision-making activity which can help develop a range of skills in the target language. The simulated situation is one in which the group has been stranded on an island. There are lifeboats to carry all to safety on neighboring islands. etc.Example: Ladousse's 11 factors to Crookall and Oxford's (1990) "Island Game. but an overall group consensus must be reached on who will go where. A volcano will erupt in 30-60 minutes. with whom.

complete with a political structure. . They are given information on lifeboat numbers and capacities. They draw up a set of guidelines. and with the top three Time: 1/2 hours for the main game." The time until the volcano explodes is periodically written on the board. etc. Each student must complete a "personal profile" with accurate information on sex. islands declared out of bounds) when a defend a point of view. elicit cooperation. nationality. express Procedure: The group makes decisions to reach a consensus. "too easily. understanding directions. or agreement and disagreement. and make judgments.. Follow-up: Small groups rank order and discuss the five main factors that led to their decisions about forming groups. etc. Different skills are enhanced such as listening. writing and reading. group seems to have made a decision analyze data. employment. neighboring islands. Preparation and Warm-up: Students must not talk. Variation: Each group develops a society on its new island. The teacher makes sure that everyone stands up and moves around. Changes can be made (such as boats being declared unseaworthy. speaking. 1 hour preferred islands indicated. etc. choosing islands and escape boats. or constitution.Level: Advanced practical skills. initiating. for follow-up Aim: Ice breaking. Language: Language skills are used to reveal things about oneself. persuade. for the community. age. Organization: Whole class and small groups of 3-7 students. developing skills in decision making and cooperation. background.

wig and hat. Students identify with persons in photographs. write his/her imaginary biography. Picture role plays. Ladousse (1987) . Follow-up discussion can focus on uniforms we wear in our daily lives. glasses. The other students comment on their changed appearance. try on props and accessories such as a white coat. in turn. and interview each other in their roles.Brief Role Play Examples What do I look like? Students. This provides practice in simple past tense.

and must borrow ingredients from each other. They are given picture cards showing cooking ingredients that they either need or have a lot of. They explain what they are cooking. Group improvisation. Two students improvise a scene. Ladousse (1987) . and others join and leave the improvisation. Role switching.Brief Role Play Examples Neighbors: may I borrow? Students practice making polite requests. Students role play persons in a conflict. roles are switched. On the teacher's signal. Discussion can center on how strong emotions are expressed in different cultures. tying their roles and exit into the improvisation.

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