Instructions: Go through the vocabulary below with your students. Next, ask them to use this vocabulary in the conversation section below.
Useful Phrasal Verbs
- Fill someone in – to tell someone something they do not know, especially something that happened when they were not around.
Example Sentence: I wasn’t able to be in the meeting, could you fill me in?
- To talk back – to reply to someone in a disrespectful or argumentative manner.
Example Sentence: The student got in trouble for talking back to their teacher.
- To zone out – to stop paying attention especially when you are tired or bored.
Example Sentence: My wife tends to zone out when I talk to her about work.
- To point out something – to direct attention toward something.
Example Sentence: I want to point out that the deadline for this project has been extended by two weeks.
- To be lost in thought – to give all of one’s attention to one’s thoughts and therefore do not notice what is going on around them.
Example Sentence: Jerry didn’t hear a word you said, he was lost in thought.
- To beat around the bush – to talk about a lot of unimportant things because you want to avoid talking about what is really important.
Example Sentence: Stop beating around the bush and tell us what you really think.
- To speak one’s mind – to say what you think about something. To be very direct.
Example Sentence: Matthew is not afraid to speak his mind.
Useful Vocabulary Words
Mastering Conversation ESL Conversation Questions
1. What subjects in your country tend to polarize people?
2. Can you think of a time when something important in your business was overlooked? What happened? What did you do to fix it?
3. Who or what inspires you most in your work or personal life?
4. Are there cultural differences in how people perceive talking back? Can you provide examples?
5. In your opinion, what is the difference between respectfully expressing disagreement and talking back?
6. Have you ever regretted talking back to someone? What happened and what did you learn from the experience?
7. Have you ever caught yourself zoning out during a conversation?
8. What activities or situations cause you to zone out the most?
9. How do you regain focus when you realize you’ve zoned out during a lecture or meeting?
10. Are there any strategies or techniques you use to prevent yourself from zoning out?
11. How do you prefer to be filled in on important news or updates? Do you prefer detailed explanations or concise summaries?
12. Are there any situations where you intentionally choose not to fill someone in on certain information? Why?
13. How important is it to fill someone in when working on a team or in a professional setting? What are the potential consequences of not doing so?
14. Have you ever had to point out a mistake or error to a coworker or friend? If so, how did you approach it?
15. In your opinion, what is the most effective way to point out someone’s mistake without making them feel bad?
16. Are there any situations where you think it’s better not to point out someone’s mistakes or faults? Why?
17. Do you think allowing time for one to get lost in their own thoughts can contribute to personal growth or creativity?
18. Do you think technology and constant connectivity make it harder to get lost in one’s thoughts? Why or why not?
19. Do you find it difficult to speak your mind when in social situations? Why or why not?
20. Are there any topics or issues that you find particularly challenging to speak your mind about? Why?
21. In your opinion, what are the benefits of encouraging open and honest communication where people feel free to speak their minds?
22. Can you recall a time when you spoke your mind and it had a positive impact on a situation?
23. How important do you think it is to be concise in communication? Why?
24. Do you find it easy or challenging to be concise when expressing your ideas or thoughts? Can you give an example?
25. How does being concise in written communication differ from being concise in spoken communication?
26. What strategies or techniques do you use to improve your articulation skills?
27. Do you find it difficult or easy to paraphrase information accurately? Why or why not?
28. Can you think of a time when you had to paraphrase something in English? How did you do it?