Morning discussion as a communicative activity

Document Type

Journal Article


The United States Department of State for Teachers of English

Place of Publication

Washington DC, United States of America


School of International, Cultural and Community Studies




Originally published as: Hui, L., Xin, J., & Yi, J. (2004). Morning discussion as a communicative activity. In English Teaching Forum. 42(4), 6 - 11. Washington, United States of America: The United States Department of State for Teachers of English. Original article available here


Morning Discussion (MD) is a modified version of Morning Report or Today’s Report (Xie 1998). Morning Report/Today’s Report (MR), as Xie describes it, is a popular 10- or 20-minute classroom activity aimed at providing opportunities for Chinese students to develop their overall English language skills. However, in attempting to implement this activity, we realized that MR usually was a one-way communication process in which one reporter read or recited news to other students, who simply sat and listened, then answered questions. The 27 students in our class, after being involved in MR for one semester, dis-closed that they had exhausted their interest in it. Many students also indicated that they were nervous when standing up to talk in class and had no confidence in their ability to speak spontaneously. However, they expressed a desire to learn to use oral English to communicate...