Providing Speaking Prompts

I came across an excellent blog called “Teaching the Core:  A Non-Freaked Out Approach to the Common Core.”

Here is an excerpt from one of the blogs on Speaking and Listening, which provided ways the teacher shared with students specific writing prompts, to help them learn the various speaking/listening standards and put them into practice.  What I love about the writing prompts is that they provide structure and model examples for students who are in the process of learning how to write and speak effectively.  

A link to the Full blog is posted here:


  • “Do you refer to evidence from the text under discussion and/or other research pertaining to the subject? (SL.9-10.1a)
    • According to ______, ________. In other words, ________
  • Do you propel conversations by posing and responding to questions that relate the current discussion to broader themes or larger ideas? (SL.9-10.1c)
    • In response to _____’s question, ______.
    • _____’s comment about _____ points to the larger issue of _______.
  • Do you actively incorporate others into the discussion? (SL.9-10.1c)
    • ______, I’m curious what you have to say on this matter, given your previous statement about ________.
    • ________ was wise to point out _________; to add to it, I would argue _______.
  • Do you clarify, verify, or challenge ideas and conclusions? (SL.9-10.1c)
    • ________, I heard you say ________. Am I getting that right?
    • _________, is it fair to summarize your point by saying ______?
    • ________ said ______, and I would challenge that conclusion with this: ________.
  • Do you summarize points of agreement and/or disagreement? (SL.9-10.1d)
    • _________ and _______ seem to agree on _________. However, they disagree on __________.
  • Do you qualify or justify your own views and/or make new connections in light of evidence and reasoning presented by others? (SL.9-10.1d)
    • As you all know, I previously said ________. However, I would like to justify what I said in light of _____’s evidence.
  • Are you able to detect fallacious reasoning or exaggerated/distorted evidence? (SL.9-10.3)
    • (This one is best explored and modeled with mentor texts or pre-recorded debates.)
  • Do you present your ______ (point, information, finding, supporting evidence) clearly, concisely, and logically? (SL.9-10.4)
    • Requiring students to use transitions is key for increasing clarity and logic.
    • To help them think about clarity, concision, and logic, try showing them videos of themselves or their peers speaking.
  • Are you able to show your command of formal English? (SL.9-10.6)
My goal with grading Speaking and Listening standards is to give students feedback that is immediate (I’m done grading them by the time they sit down), focused (hence giving them one skill per speaking task), and, ultimately, helpful to them. At the end of the day,my students are the ones that will live with their speaking and listening abilities–not me.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s