I was wondering if anyone had any advice on how to make my conversational classes more interesting for my students.
The class is comprised of 16-18 year olds and can, despite being of quite a high level, be quite hard to motivate. I want to talk about stuff that they're interested in but the problem is that Chinese kids spend almost all of their waking lives studying and generally don't have many hobbies that they spend enough time doing to talk about at great length. Also, their views have a tendancy to be very generic, as they have probably just absorbed the views of their parents or learned the 'acceptable' view on a subject and taken it on as their own. Many times I've attempted to get heated discussions going but all I get is one general view witch isn't argued with anything resembling passion.
I'm pulling my hair out with this class, and a lack of ideas is leading me to use material from the course book which is filled with comprehension material. Not the best method for a class that's supposed to be all about conversation. And they hate it!
By the way i'm new to teaching and this is my first class of this kind.
Any advice is much appreciated,