Having fun while learning Russian – is it really possible?
The answer is yes. Role play! 🙂
Role play is an excellent exercise for the freer speaking practice. You practice how to communicate in Russian.
What is role play?
In role play, you are given a role. You get all information about the role you should interpret. You have some time to prepare, and then you act out small scenes using any given information or ideas, as well as your own ideas.
You can get just the name of a role, or be offered guidance.
For example: passenger -> complaining that his train has been delayed for three hours
Roles can be designed to offer you opportunities to practise specific pieces of language (grammatical points, lexical groups, functional areas, etc).
Why is role play interesting?
- You practise language related to real life situations
How can you order a meal in a restaurant?
How can you complain about the bill?
- You can be creative and put yourself in somebody else’s shoes
Would you like to be a pop star giving an interview?
A doctor helping a sick child?
- You focus on situation and not on the language itself
When you do a role play, you train your brain to remember things in the most natural way.
- You have unlimited possibilities
As well as initiating general discussion on issues, role play can also be set in specific contexts, providing a starting point for speaking practice and also for practice of specific language items.
How can a professional Russian teacher make sure that role play will be successful?
A teacher needs to:
- Make sure that you understand the main idea of role play
- Make sure that the situation or context is clear
- Make sure that you know the necessary words
- Allow thinking time
- Give you time to prepare your ideas before you start
- At the end of the role play, give feedback on how well you completed the activity – comment on the language used as well as the appropriacy
Having fun while learning Russian helps you retain information better because the process is memorable and enjoyable.
The end result: you will learn new things and feel that you have achieved something, which will motivate you to continue learning Russian.
The real learning experience is when you try to use the language yourself. You need to use it in sentences and check if you have internalised the concept.