A Guide to the TOEFL (Speaking) Exam: Week Eight

If you haven’t seen – “A Guide to the TOEFL (Speaking) Exam: Introduction + Week One” – yet, then I would recommend starting there. On the other hand, if you’ve already seen it, or if you just don’t care, then welcome to week eight of my nine-week TOEFL (Speaking) Exam preparation course.

This lesson plan is for a 40-minute class, give or take three minutes because I was lucky enough to have some leeway.

  1. 0:00 – 8:00 = Word Choice Practice Exam III
    • Give students 2:00 to read the notes and instructions, then 5:30 to take the exam.
  2. 8:00 – 10:00 = Quickly read through the correct answers to the WC practice exam.
  3. 10:00 – 15:30 = Watch “The Art of Debate: Never Lose an Argument Again” by THNKR.
    • Instruct students to watch closely, listen carefully, and take notes.
  4. 15:30 – 21:30 = Debate practice. 
    • First, break students into pairs, and have them debate each other. Possible topics include (but are not limited to):
      1. Competitive video gaming should be an Olympic event.
      2. Owning and operating gas-powered vehicles should be illegal.
      3. When self-driving cars are cheap enough for all car owners to afford, it should be illegal for people to drive.
      4. Movies portraying vampires in a positive light should be banned.
      5. It should be illegal to manufacture and distribute disgusting ice cream flavors, such as Old Betsy’s “Cow Patty-swirl with Boogers”.
      6. In Disney World it should be legal to sell chewing gum. It’s not right now, by the way.
      7. It should be illegal to give out healthy food, such as apples and carrot sticks, to trick-or-treaters on Halloween.
    • Then, instruct each pair of students to debate another pair.
  5. 21:30 – 40:00 = TOEFL (Speaking) Mock Exam 8

Homework Assignment #15 – Task 3 Practice

This is an example of an “Integrated” Task 3 Question, and it should take you less than 5 minutes to complete. Keep in mind, during the exam you will only have 45 seconds to read a short text, then you will then hear a short conversation, or part of a lecture, on the same topic. You may take notes during both the reading and listening sections. Next you will see a question concerning the information you read and heard. Finally, you will have 30 seconds to prepare your response, and 60 seconds to respond.

As ever, I pay special attention to the following when critiquing your responses:

  1. Delivery: How clear is your speech? Good responses are those in which the speech is fluid and clear, with good pronunciation, natural pacing, and natural-sounding intonation patterns.
  2. Language Use: How effectively do you use grammar and vocabulary to convey your ideas? How well can you control both basic and more complex language structures? Did you use appropriate vocabulary?
  3. Topic Development: How fully did you answer the question, and how coherently did you present your ideas? Good responses generally use all or most of the time allotted, and the relationship between ideas and the progression from one idea to the next is clear and easy to follow.

Plan to Enlarge the Library

We plan to enlarge the library by 20,000 square feet, and the space will be devoted to increased shelf space for printed materials and more desks for students. The university plans to transform the main library into a learning and information center that will fulfill our promise to offer the best possible environment for academic success and high achieving students in the 21st century. The work is expected to begin in early February and it will be completed next year.

[Begin audio at 5:46 — TOEFL Speaking, Task 3 Samples]

Q: “The man expresses his opinion of the announcement, state his opinion and explain the reasons he gives for holding it.”

*For Key Points see HW15 (PDF) file attachment.

***Bonus Task 3 Sample Question — Exam English***

Listen, it’s easy to find sample Task 3 Questions, all I did was search YouTube for: “toefl speaking exam task 3 sample questions”

Homework Assignment #16 – Task 4 Practice

This is an example of an “Integrated” Task 4 Question, and it should take you less than 5 minutes to complete. Keep in mind, during the exam you will only have 45 seconds to read a short text, then you will then hear a short conversation, or part of a lecture, on the same topic. You may take notes during both the reading and listening sections. Next you will see a question concerning the information you read and heard. Finally, you will have 30 seconds to prepare your response, and 60 seconds to respond.

Cyclic Population Change

An ecosystem is a functional system that includes an ecological community of organisms together with the physical environment, interacting as a unit. One aspect of ecosystems, cyclic population change, refers to species changing the size of their population cyclically. Populations change over time due to many different circumstances such as their size and their climate change. However, as these circumstances repeat, the populations of these species return to their original state.

[Begin audio at 6:26 — TOEFL Speaking, Task 4 Samples]

Q: “Using points and examples from the lecture, describe the changes among wolves and mice.”

*For Key Points see HW16 (PDF) file attachment.

***Bonus Task 4 Sample Question — Exam English***

Listen, it’s easy to find sample Task 4 Questions, all I did was search YouTube for: “toefl speaking exam task 4 sample questions”

TOEFL Scoring Rubric, Attachments, and Presentation

This scoring table is copyrighted by the Educational Testing Service. They are the creators of the TOEFL Test, and their book, Official Guide to the TOEFL Test with DVD, Fifth Edition (2017), is the definitive guide. If you’re serious about getting the highest possible score on this exam, then buy it.

toefl_speaking_rubrics

Attachments