Talk transfers ?Ǩ investigating and developing oral skills in a crosscurricular initiative

Julia Charles


This study is an account of a project undertaken with a group of year nine students (13-14 year olds) in an inner city comprehensive school in 2004. The study focuses on the value of cross-curricular work, an area of personal interest and also an area that is currently under-researched, namely the value of ?Ǩtalk?ǨѢ across the curriculum and as a preparation for the demands of further education.
?ǨTalk?ǨѢ is considered to be a vital component in ensuring progress in the subject of English, yet many students are reluctant to participate in discussions particularly in speaking and listening activities. This fact motivated an investigation into how much ?Ǩtalk?ǨѢ happens in other subjects. Working in another subject, an English teacher observed responses of a class doing oral group presentations.
This article provides background information, details the planning process and comments on the presentations. Reflections on the presentations include an analysis of students?ǨѢ comments from evaluation sheets completed after the presentations.
It documents how collaborating with a History teacher across strong curricular boundaries was a very positive experience. Such cross-curricular collaboration between teachers has been made more difficult by the strong boundaries between national curriculum subjects. This, it is argued here, is regrettable.

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Editor-in-Chief: Prof Norbert Pachler
UCL Institute of Education, University College London
ISSN 1746-9082

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