Another Whiteboard Snap: Task Complexity

This one is from TP Feedback just now. Emergent stuff, during discussion of a case of a listening task that was well below optimal…doability (that’s a technical term in my book!). We talked about ways to reduce ‘task complexity‘ for these pre-intermediate learners we’re currently working with. It was a sentence-editing task; change the statements minimally so that they’re true according to the story being told…most learners initially did it as a T/F first because it wasn’t a) set up thoroughly and b) something they intuited was doable anyway, so they went ahead with T/F (naturally). Ultimately most learners failed to engage productively in the task because the complexity involved wasn’t sufficiently addressed by the teacher.

IMG_1980

What do you make of this issue/area? How difficult is/was it to gauge task complexity and anticipate problems in ‘doability’? What other general considerations and strategies might you add to the little list we produced this evening? Use that lovely little comment box below, ya hear? 🙂

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