Time needed: 1 to 20 min
Why? Role-play is an excellent way to practice language in situations closer to real life than usual language practice in class room allows. It does not only train fluency but also involves the use of language and body language: gesture, facial expresion, body distance, intonation, connected speech, contractions and so on. Additionally it is great fun.
When? Whenever you want students to practice and train specific elements of language like new lexis, grammatical constructions, functional language.
How? In pairs, in groups. Introduce the situation, the roles. Who are they, what are they supposed to do? Prepare words and language the students will need for their roles. Useful language and possible mistakes can be discussed before and after. Make sure the students understand the context and what to do. Optional: Hand out role cards with information about the character. Give students some time to prepare their roles and the use of language in small groups. During the role-play, don’t interrupt for corrections but take notes. After each role-play, involve other students to respond what they saw – give feedback yourself.
Any risks? Give some time for preparation and response. Otherwise, the only risk is to have fun! Plan a cool-down period after the role-play.