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Role Playing

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Using role playing in the classroom has many benefits: Empathy: When students are participating in role play activities, they are likely to be supportive of their classmates as they understand that putting yourself out there in these types of activities makes you vulnerable. This type of supportive and understanding atmosphere increases empathy among the students. Authentic language experiences: Role play activities give students practice communicating in authentic ways and situations. This will give them more confidence when presented with those scenarios when they are outside of class. Memorable learning experience: The process students go through when they are doing a role play activity (creating or learning the dialogue, practicing, presenting) will help solidify the new information they are learning. Dramatic activities provide “some of the richest and most memorable experiences (students) have in their struggle with the some second language” (Celce-Murcia, 71). Adaptable for multiple levels: Role play activities can be modified to fit upper and lower level students within the same activity. Lower level students can stick to the previously generated script and upper level students can modify the dialogue or improvise on their own. Students can take on as much or as little spontaneity as they feel comfortable. Decreases inhibitions: Parrish states that “because learners are taking on a different persona to a degree, they sometimes are less inhibited than they might be with other fluency activities” (106). Increases motivation and self-esteem: Stern notes that role playing activities are “a curative for the frustration and lagging interest which can often occur during second language learning” and “provides strong instrumental motivation” for learning the language. He concludes that role playing “raises self-esteem by demonstrating to second language learners…...

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