English Clubs are popular in the countries that the English Connects programme targets, especially in secondary schools.
They offer an opportunity to practise and develop English language skills in an enjoyable way. Most clubs tend to focus on holding debates and performing plays or sketches, singing songs and often preparing for debating competitions, if they happen to belong to an English Club Association.
This means that students who have weaker speaking skills, or lack the confidence to perform, miss out on participating in club activities. Last year, between December 2018 and March 2019, the British Council worked with two UK providers who devised and piloted two toolkits - one for secondary schools and one for tertiary level - to encourage the clubs to become more interactive and open with all members.
The overall aim of supporting English Clubs at secondary and tertiary level with a toolkit is to increase learners’ confidence and ability to use English by providing teachers/club leaders with additional resources for club activities and encouraging them to maximise participant talking time via learner-centred communicative activities.
Moreover, our objective is to assist teachers/club leaders in developing local support communities so as to motivate and encourage them in undertaking this voluntary role.