ESB Teacher Guide: Intermediate



About ESB

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Message from our Chief Executive

The Intermediate Suite of Graded Examinations in Speech Guidance for Activity 1: Biographical Talk/Presenting a Case Guidance for Activity 2: Speaking by Heart/Interpreting a text Guidance for Activity 3: Commentary on a Prepared Reading/Communicating a Character/Analysis of Real Life Speech Guidance for Activity 4: Open Exchange of Ideas






Suggested choices

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Setting up the assessment

Marking the assessment


Final thoughts


© 2018 English Speaking Board (International) Ltd.


About ESB English Speaking Board (International) Ltd. is a national awarding organisation offering accredited qualifications in speech and language. With over 65 years of experience, ESB offers a wide range of flexible, Ofqual regulated qualifications which promote clear, effective communication skills in the UK and internationally. Founded on a philosophy which values the worth of every individual, ESB strives to stretch the most able and support the least confident through the development of speaking and listening skills.


Message from our Chief Executive, Tina Renshaw

Thank you for wanting to put Oracy and its assessment into your teaching and learning. ESB has been assessing communication skills for 65 years and we're passionate about the impact we know Oracy has on the lives of children and young people. ESB considers Oracy or speaking and listening as a set of key life skills that unlocks potential and is central to work and life. Our assessments provide benchmarks for achievement with speaking and listening. They outline what learners should be able to demonstrate in line with National Curriculum Spoken Language / Spoken English standards. By using an external assessment model we provide an ‘expert’ validation of your work with your learners through their assessment outcomes. We also provide training and feedback to you to support your preparation of your learners to achieve their potential.


Whatever our route to employment, employers consistently tell us that teamwork and communication skills are central to their success and need to be of a higher standard when our young people enter the workforce.

Our assessments develop and validate those skills:

 Confidence in formal communication settings.

 Audibility of voice, choice of vocabulary and use of pace to communicate a message or information effectively.

 The practice of engaging your listeners with eye contact.

 Listening and asking questions to demonstrate your engagement with the subject or to secure your knowledge.

 Ability to research a topic and present your research outlining different perspectives.

 Cognitive skills to read out loud published pieces of English written in a form that is less familiar to you and being able to convey their meaning.


 Facilitating a small group to discuss a topic, play back and sum up the viewpoints in the room.

Central to our assessment ethos is that of personal, social and emotional development and choice for the learner – finding their voice through structured activities, building on their interests. Wouldn’t it be great if all our learners’ experiences of assessment contributed to their confidence and sense of achievement, self-respect and respect for the views of others? We have the evidence from our centres and learners to say that it does. Why don’t you watch this short clip to see our showcase of achievement?


The Intermediate Suite Our Intermediate suite of Graded Examinations in Speech promotes Oracy and is designed to enhance students’ presentational and communication skills. The suite contains the following qualifications:  ESB Level 2 Certificate in Speech (Grade 4)  ESB Level 2 Certificate in Speech (Grade 5) (Drama-focused)  ESB Level 2 Certificate in Speech (Grade 5) (Presentation-focused) The Intermediate suite of Graded Examinations in Speech is predominantly aimed at students between Year 9 and Year 11. These qualifications are mapped to National Curriculum requirements in Spoken English at Key Stage 3 and 4, and also the Pass requirements of the GCSE Spoken Language Endorsement. They also support the teaching of national curricula in English and Literacy in Scotland , Wales and Northern Ireland . In addition, students could research and deliver a case on a contemporary issue for the Grade 5 assessment that expands knowledge for different GCSE topics such as:


 Geography (for example, Resource Management and Food Security) ;  Biology ( Cardio-Vascular Disease and Obesity);  Computer Science ( The Ethical and Legal Impact of Digital Technologies ). Our portfolio of Graded Examinations in Speech can help you to promote Spiritual, Moral, Social and Cultural (SMSC) education and British values, which is an Ofsted requirement. By encouraging students to plan and give a talk on a subject of interest, as well as participate in a discussion, these qualifications can help students to: reflect; use imagination and creativity; offer reasoned views; use a range of social skills; appreciate different viewpoints; and understand, accept, respect and celebrate diversity. In addition, these qualifications have been designed to inspire students to engage with poetry and prose, which can help them to: explore beliefs and experience; respect faiths, feelings and values; investigate moral and ethical issues; and engage with the British values of democracy, the rule of law, liberty, respect and tolerance.


Each qualification can also be flexibly taught. They can be delivered during the classroom study of a curriculum topic or as a standalone activity as part of a lunchtime or after school group. Qualifications in our Graded Examinations in Speech portfolio can be made more accessible for students with additional educational needs. You can make a reasonable adjustment application for a student. Reasonable adjustments can include, but are not limited to:  Changing usual assessment arrangements such as giving extra time to complete an activity (e.g. a talk).  Re-organising the assessment room, so that a student with a hearing impairment can sit closer to the assessor.

 Choosing a pre-selected reading passage.

For further information, please see our Reasonable Adjustments and Special Considerations Policy .


The ESB Level 2 Certificate in Speech (Grade 4) contains the following four assessment sections:

 Biographical Talk – Students should research and deliver a talk on a famous or interesting person, outlining their achievements and importance (4 minutes).  Speaking by Heart – Students should begin by introducing their chosen piece of poetry, prose or drama on the theme of a place or person. They should then interpret the piece imaginatively from memory (2 minutes).  Commentary on Prepared Reading – Students should introduce their chosen reading by commenting on the characters and their place within the plot. They should then deliver a prepared extract (2 minutes).  Open Exchange of Ideas – Students should respond to questions and feedback from the assessor and group about any section.


The ESB Level 2 Certificate in Speech (Grade 5) contains the following four assessment sections:

 Presenting a Case – Students should research and deliver a talk about a contemporary issue (5 minutes).  Interpreting text of literary worth – Students should begin by introducing their chosen poem, extract from a published novel or short story. They should then interpret the piece imaginatively from memory (3 minutes). (Presentation focused) – Students should introduce their real-life speech, commenting on its context, significance and delivery. They should then read the speech to the group (5 minutes) OR Communicating a character (Drama-focused) – Students should introduce, and then communicate, their chosen character by putting themselves in the ‘hot seat’. Here, the objective is to share that character’s thoughts, feelings and emotions with the audience (2 minutes).  Open Exchange of Ideas – Students should respond to questions and feedback from the assessor and group about any section.  Analysis of Significant Real-Life Speech


This short guide is intended to support teachers in preparing their students for these qualifications and it is divided into four main sections.  The first section provides advice about how to structure a talk and present a case.  The second section offers guidance about how to deliver poetry and interpret a text.  The third section provides advice about how to give a prepared reading and communicate a character.  The final section offers guidance in relation to sharing and evaluating ideas in a group discussion. The guide also contains a series of short bite-size videos from ESB specialists in Oracy. Here, they will provide you with tailored advice in key areas of assessment. Below is the introductory video:


Teaching Guidance

Below are tips in relation to Biographical Talk (Grade 4) / Presenting a Case (Grade 5):

 Ask students to be selective with their research. An audience can lose track of a talk if too much information is included.  Stress that the talk should include a personal element. For example, with the biographical talk, encourage students to make reference why they admire their chosen subject. They should explain their choice, giving details of their achievements and importance.

 Advise students to time their talks when practising. This will ensure that introductions are not rushed and

that there is the necessary time for a proper conclusion. Practising to time also helps build confidence, which encourages spontaneous delivery.

Students should try not to backtrack if they forget a piece of information. If they do, this information can always be brought in later, during the discussion.


 If students use presentation software (such as Prezzi or PowerPoint) as a visual aid, ensure that they do not read their talks from slides, or face the screen, as this will limit their communication with the audience. Students should stand to the side of the screen, facing the audience.  Encourage students to think about the power of imagery. For example, if a student was giving a talk about Martin Luther King Jr, an image or 10 second video footage of him delivering his famous ‘ I have a dream’ speech could be incorporated.  Always ensure that students are clear about the case they are presenting. In the introduction, they should be able to explain their case in no more than 2-3 sentences.  It is worth signposting the content of the case in the introduction. It gives the audience a ‘road map’ of the talk. For example, if a student gave a talk about the importance of promoting sport and regular exercise in schools, they could say something along the lines of: Below are tips in relation to Presenting a Case (Grade 5) only :

‘ How many of you believe that the government could more actively promote sports in schools?...


...Well, I do, and today, I’m going to talk about it. In this talk, I will begin by talking about how regular exercise can improve health and reduce obesity. I will then talk about the social benefits of taking part in team sports. Finally, I will talk about how regular exercise can improve emotional well- being, concentration and resilience’.  Encourage students to support their case with reasons and evidence. Continuing the example of exercise, a student might say: ‘Regular exercise can play a major role in helping you to lead a healthier life. According to the NHS, regular physical activity can lower the risk of coronary heart disease and stroke by up to 35%’. [Source: fitness/Pages/Whybeactive.aspx [Date assessed: 23/04/2018]  Ask students to summarise why they believe in their case when concluding their talk. Remember, they should not introduce any new evidence here, but rather draw on the information they have already presented in order to come to a conclusion .


For further guidance about structuring talks, please watch this video:

For further guidance about how to speak spontaneously, please watch this video:


For further guidance about using visual aids, please watch this video:


Below are tips in relation to Speaking by Heart (Grade 4) / Interpreting a text (Grade 5):  Choices should be on a theme or topic that is of real interest to the students. They should also provide scope for vocal variety. Here, the piece may relate to the subject of the talk if desired.  Poems and monologues should to meet the following criteria in terms of length, content and language. The piece should:  Be substantial enough to convey some development both in the author’s intentions and student’s interpretation and performance.  Be sufficiently complex to provide some contrast and range of theme, character, situation or mood.  Provide opportunities to explore universal themes.  Provide stylistic variety of language and literary form.  Contain subtleties of vocabulary and syntax.  Provide opportunities for a variety of approaches and interpretative choices.


 Ask students to concentrate on making the

introduction to their chosen piece enthusiastic and interesting for listeners. Again, stress the personal element – ask students to discuss what that chosen piece of poetry and drama means to them and why. Explaining this during their introduction will help them connect to the audience and awaken interest in their choice.  Encourage students to practise their piece often to develop a real understanding of it. In particular, at Grade 5, the focus of the task is on the writer’s use of language. Reading the text on a regular basis will help students to gain a clear familiarity with, and knowledge of, the text.  When the piece has been memorised, encourage students to experiment with different ways of emphasising certain words or phrases. In addition to pitch, pace and tone, students can bring attention to a word or group of words by inflection, which is the slide or glide of the voice in an upward or downward direction.

Please see the Suggested Choices section for a list of recommended pieces of poetry and drama.


For further guidance about choosing poetry, drama and prose, please watch this video:

For further guidance, please watch the video about performing poetry, drama and prose below:


Below are tips in relation to the Commentary on a Prepared Reading (Grade 4) /Communicating a Character (Grade 5) / Analysis of Real Life Speech (Grade 5):  Encourage students to develop a good knowledge of the book by reading it, and reflecting on both the plot and themes. At Grade 4, they should be familiar with the plot in order to draw valid conclusions about the role and impact of characters. Discussion of this will help them give an enthusiastic and persuasive introduction.  There should be a clear and well-thought-out contrast between narrative and dialogue at Grade 4. Variations in pace, pitch and tone can bring characters to life. For example, if a character feels particularly relieved, the student might choose to incorporate a sigh into that character’s dialogue.  At Grade 5, the introduction for the Communicating a Character task should take approximately 1 minute, giving the character’s name and providing relevant information for listeners, perhaps indicating the point in the character’s life.

In doing so, students should provide information for the audience to be able to ask about the character’s thoughts and feelings.


 For Communicating a Character, an accent may be used if desired, but it is not a criterion for assessment. For example, you could say something along the lines of: ‘My name is Jane Eyre. I was orphaned as a young child and lived unhappily with my aunt and cousins before I was sent to a charity school, where I spent the last 8 years. I became a teacher there but now I have just arrived at my new place of work. I have accepted a job as governess caring for a young French girl here at Thornfield Hall. I understand the master of the house is Mr Rochester’. ‘ You’ve got 5 minutes to ask me questions. I’m tight for time. Who am I? What sort of journalist are you? Haven’t you heard of me, Miranda Priestly the editor of Runway Magazine? Well you have now, and don’t you forget it!’  Encourage students to think about the different characters in their chosen extract - how they are feeling, and why they feel that way. This will help you choose different techniques in relation to body language, gesture and use of props to help create the character.  Alternatively, using the example of The Devil Wears Prada, a bolder and more charismatic introduction is:


 For the Analysis of Real Life Speech , advise students to research the context of how it came to be written/ delivered, as well as some relevant biographical detail for the writer or speaker. Ask them to identify the main techniques employed in the speech and encourage them to select an extract to read that demonstrates these. The accent of the original need not be used unless you consider it is necessary to do so to demonstrate a particular point already made. Please see the Suggested Choices section for a list of recommended texts and speeches. For further guidance about how to read aloud to an audience, please watch this video:


Below are tips in relation to Open Exchange of Ideas:

 Ask students to think about potential areas of enquiry or interest when preparing for their assessment.

 Encourage students to justify answers with evidence when responding to a question. This will help persuade the audience to their way of thinking.  Encourage students to develop a two-way discussion with the audience. Here, they could ask the audience a question or two to keep the discussion flowing.  Always encourage students to ask open-ended questions. Questions should seek additional information or put forward a different viewpoint in a constructive way.  Sometimes, a question can put students under pres- sure. If they are not sure about an answer, it is com- pletely acceptable to admit that. Rather than giving a confused response, it is better to say something like:

‘That’s an interesting question. Unfortunately, I don’t know the answer to it, but I’m certainly going to look into it.’


For further guidance about asking questions, please watch this video:

For further guidance about responding to questions, please watch this video:


For further guidance about participating in a discussion, please watch this video:


Suggested choices ESB aims to encourage and realise the potential of all learners and we recognise the individuality of each learner. Students are free to choose any pieces of poetry, drama and prose that they will enjoy presenting. However, if you are looking for level-appropriate choices for them, we suggest the poets and authors listed below. Please also note that any text that is part of a GCSE English syllabus is also considered as an appropriate choice. Poets and authors for Speaking by Heart (Grade 4) / Interpreting Text of Literary Worth (Grade 5): John Betjeman; Lewis Carroll; Gillian Clark; Wendy Cope; Carol Ann Duffy; Marriott Edgar; Seamus Heaney; Barry Hines; Stanley Holloway; Ted Hughes; Jenny Joseph; Wilfred Owen; J B Priestly; Wole Soyinka; and Benjamin Zephaniah.


Authors for Commentary on a Prepared Reading (Grade 4)/Communicating a Character (Grade 5): Sufiya Ahmed (Secrets of the Henna Girl) ; Vivian Alcock (The Cuckoo Sisters) ; John Boyne (The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas) ; Eoin Colfer (Artemis Fowl series) ; Gerald Durrell (My Family and Other Animals) ; William Golding (Lord of the Flies) ; Jamila Gavin; John Green (The Fault in Our Stars) ; Mark Harden (The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night Time) ; Laurie Lee (Cider with Rosie) ; Harper Lee ( To Kill a Mockingbird) ; Taran Matharu; Sophie Mackenzie (Girl Missing) ; George Orwell (1984, Animal Farm) ; Arthur Ransome ( Swallows and Amazons) ; John Steinbeck (Of Mice and Men) ; Lauren Weisburger (The Devil Wears Prada) ; H G Wells (War of the Worlds) .


Setting up the assessment Each learner should present to a minimum group of 5. This permits full interaction for the assessment as a whole. The assessment group should be seated in a horseshoe with the assessor at one end and the speaker in the mouth of the horseshoe. This allows for easy eye contact across the group and ensures the assessor is part of the audience.

Please see the diagram below for an example:


Visual aids, whether it be a display board or presentation software such as Prezzi or PowerPoint, should be situated close to the speaker. It should be clearly seen by both the assessor and assessment group. It is always worth testing any audio/visual equipment prior to the assessment and we find that learners who have their material on a pen drive manage to accomplish a quick changeover.


Marking the assessment During the assessment, an ESB assessor will review a learner’s performance in each of the four activities. In the process, an assessor will mark a learner against a set of grading criteria for each activity. The set of criteria for each activity is mapped to the qualification learning outcomes and assessment criteria. For a specific activity, an ESB assessor will review a learner’s performance in relation to each criterion (for example, Visual Aids in the Talk) and allocate a grade of either:



Good Pass


Merit Plus Distinction

Each criterion in an activity is reviewed by the assessor in order to determine a learner’s overall performance.


Our assessments aim to promote clear, effective and confident oral communication amongst all learners, and subsequently, they have been designed to encourage learners to reach a minimum ‘Pass’ standard in speaking, listening and responding. The tables in this section of the guide show the broad requirements of a ‘Pass’, ‘Merit’ and ‘Distinction’ grade for each of the four assessments. However, please note that the tables refer to a shortened interpretation of the full grading criteria. In addition, the grading criteria of each qualification is slightly different.

So, please do check individual specifications if you are unsure about anything.


Activity 1 (40% of assessment): Biographical Talk (Grade 4) /Presenting a Case (Grade 5)


 Clear introduction, body and conclusion.  Presentation relies on notes or learnt text.  Contains some evidence of research with own views stated.  Visual material illustrates information.  Information is set out clearly in well- organised structure.  Mostly natural delivery with a good command of material.  Focused use of well-researched material. Efficient structure with originality in introduction and thoughtful conclusion.  Confident command of material with spontaneous speech and mature vocabulary.  Accurate, original and detailed content.  Accomplished and sophisticated use of visual material.  Confident use of visual material.


Distinction 


Activity 2 (20%): Speaking by Heart (Grade 4)/ Interpreting a text (Grade 5) Pass  Brief introduction or commentary.

 Mainly remembers lines, but with minor hesitation.  Clear and/or audible voice with vocal expression.  Interpreted with a focus on rhythm and/or structure.  Full and thoughtful introduction, which shows an understanding of the text.  Well-remembered, with words mainly secure.  Appropriate phrasing, pace and pause.  Well-interpreted, with mood or atmosphere communicated to the audience. Full, thoughtful and critical introduction, with comprehensive reasoning. Words mainly secure and piece is confidently spoken. Free and fluent delivery that is sensitively paced. Effective use of pause and facial expression.  


Distinction 

Interpreted with knowledge and understanding. Mood and sprit spontaneously and confidently communicated to the audience.


Activity 3 (20%): Commentary on Prepared Reading (Grade 4)


Brief comment on characters. Mainly fluent reading but with minor hesitations.

Audible voice.

Eye contact with audience.


 Introduction provides insight into characters and their role.

Appropriate pace and timing.

Clear and audible voice.

 Looks up regularly, while keeping the flow.  Mature analysis of characters and roles.  Characters brought to life through interpretation.


Vocal and facial responses to words. Shows a full awareness of the audience.


Activity 3 (20%): Communicating a Character/ Analysis of a Real Life Speech (Grade 5)


 Role simply created and engages with audience at the beginning and end (Drama) .

Brief comments on style and original delivery (Drama) .

Clear and audible voice (Presentation) .


 Thoughtful characterisation and mostly engages with the audience (Drama) .

Insightful analysis of style and original delivery (Drama) .

Fluent delivery (Drama) .

Distinction 

Brings chosen character to life with assurance and fully engages with the audience (Drama) .  Mature analysis of style and original delivery (Presentation) .  Brings speech to life (Presentation) .


Activity 4 (20%): Open Exchange of Ideas


Brief responses, which develop


 Asks one or two relevant questions.

Takes part when reminded.


 Provides full and fluent answers to questions.  Asks questions that seek additional information and promote further understanding. Provides full and lively responses to questions.  Asks questions that are complex and challenges thinking.  Always ready to support the group with comments.  Engages with the group well.

Distinction 


Final thoughts

ESB is keen to ensure that your experience of teaching these qualifications is enjoyable and rewarding. Our aim is to recognise and fulfil the potential of all students as we fully understand the important role of Oracy in the development of life skills.

Our final thoughts on teaching these qualifications are:

 Encourage students to always support the points in their talk with reasons and evidence.

 Stress the personal element; ensure students explain why they are interested in a particular choice of talk, poetry and drama, and what it means to them.

 Memory work is key. When a student has

memorised the words to a poem/monologue, they can explore different techniques to interpret it with sensitivity to the text.

 Body language is important – facial and hand gestures can enhance the power of a speech.

 Encourage students to respond to questions with as much detail as possible.


 Encourage students to ask open, thoughtful, and complex questions that add a new perspective to the discussion. For further information, please contact English Speaking Board (International) Ltd. at



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