If your browser does not support current web standards you will not be able to view this page as it was designed. Please consider upgrading to a standards-compliant version.

Hopelink Adult Education Tutor Support Hopelink/Adult Education Hopelink Adult Education Tutor Support

ESL Lesson Idea: Making Conversation


Developing social skills such as small talk will go a long way to breaking the isolation of many immigrants. This lesson teaches ways to initiate a conversation, some appropriate common phrases used to agree or disagree, and how to politely finish a conversation.

  • Begin by demonstrating a simple conversation with a neighbor, as in the handout Making Conversation. Ask your colleague or a student to read the dialogue with you.
  • Present and discuss some of the phrases in the handout Conversation Tools, giving attention to which are appropriate for casual situations, first acquaintance, etc.
  • Point out that many of these phrases are used in combination, for example "Hello, it's nice to see you" or "It's been great chatting with you, see you later."
  • Have students make up skits in pairs, including a casual conversation, and then present them to the rest of the class.
  • Some typical topics for casual conversations are discussed in the related Workplace Lesson Small Talk.
Hopelink Adult Education | Copyright 2011 Hopelink
Toll free: 800.870.1912
11011 120th Avenue NE
Kirkland WA 98033
31957 E. Commercial Street
Carnation WA 98014
North King County/Shoreline
15809 Westminster Way NE
Shoreline WA 98133