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Discussing languages

Average: 3.4 (132 votes)

This is a discussion activity that you can use to find out about your students’ opinions of language learning and how important they think it is.

Jo Budden

It gets your students talking and sharing opinions but also gives you a chance to listen in and to understand their motivation and attitudes towards languages.


Make a copy of the discussion statements and cut them into strips so those students can take one statement at a time and discuss it. Add some statements of your own if your students have specific language issues they may want to discuss.


  • Put your students into groups of four or five and give each group a statement.
  • Let them discuss the statement for a few minutes while you monitor and feed in any language they need.
  • Then rotate the statements around the groups.
  • Once all the students have discussed all the statements you might want to have a class vote to see what the consensus of opinion is on these statements and share some of your own opinions and insights.

 Discussion statements

  • Everybody should speak at least two languages.
  • In the future there won’t be so many different languages in the world.
  • Tourists in my country should make an effort to speak my language.
  • Life would be easier if all countries spoke the same language.
  • I think learning languages is really important these days.
  • Girls are normally better at learning foreign languages than boys!
  • If languages disappear, different ways of thinking also disappear.
  • I would like to know more foreign languages.
  • Some languages are more important than others.
  • English is an ‘international language’.
  • Knowing foreign languages helps you to get a good job.

This activity was originally published in December 2007

Language level
Language Level: 
Intermediate: B1