5 Fun Activities With Audio For ‘No Pens Day Wednesday’

Tomorrow is the fourth annual ‘No Pens Day Wednesday’ – an initiative launched by The Communication Trust to “encourage schools to put down their pens and run a day of listening and speaking activities”.

So to help teachers plan some fun audio-centric lessons for their pupils, we have put together the following suggestions for classroom activities.

We hope you like them. To register your school for ‘No Pens Day Wednesday’, and access plenty of other lesson resources, visit The Communication Trust website.

#1. Poetry Power

Ask a couple of your more able pupils to read a poem aloud and record their efforts. This isn’t a performance, so they can do it from their desks.

Play the recordings back in full and ask the class for comments on the pupils’ delivery. Then play through each verse separately, requesting more detailed comments. How do they think the recitation could be improved? Where do they think the pauses should be? Can they identify the metre? What about the rhyme structure?

#2. Famous Speeches

Play this short version of Martin Luther King’s famous ‘I have a dream’ speech to the class.

Ask if they know who is speaking? Why do they think the speech is important? Which words do they notice being repeated? Use the speech as a starting point for discussion on the fight for civil rights in America.

#3 Key sounds in French

Play the class this short audio clip of the words for colours in French. Then ask your pupils some simple questions about colour combinations – e.g. ‘rouge + jaune’ = ******

You can do this as a class or in small groups. The task will test your pupils’ knowledge of the French words and their grasp of French pronunciation. If you have Sonocent Audio Notetaker, you can also ask them to record their answers into the software and add your feedback on their answers and pronunciation alongside the recording.

#4 In the News

Begin the lesson by playing a news story from the CBBC Newsround website. Ask your pupils to listen closely and identify the important facts.

Then ask your pupils to record their own news report. Encourage them to record their report several times, improving their delivery as they go. Play the news reports back to the class. And ask your pupils for feedback on whether the reports relate the information in an interesting way while covering off the key facts.

#5 Word games

This is one for those of you who have Audio Notetaker.

To begin the lesson, display the software’s interface on the projector screen.

Hit the Record button and welcome the pupils to the lesson. Hopefully, they should notice the chunks appearing on the screen. Stop the recording, then invite one of the pupils to say a sentence into the microphone (after pressing record again).

Play the clip back to the class.

Give the class a basic overview of the interface, focusing on the ‘Audio’ window and the chunks. Ask the pupils to explain what they think the chunks represent

Working in pairs, let the pupils record sentences into the software. Give them time to play around with the software, seeing if they can create long chunks by saying tongue twisters or very short one-word chunks, by saying one word at a time.


More resources

Download free recordings of poetry readings

Download free sound effects

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