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Communication Skills

Listening and Speaking: Communication Skills



One of the most important skills for successfully interviewing and functioning in a job is to communicate effectively. It is necessary to say exactly what you mean and to listen so that you understand what another person is saying. This activity gives students the opportunity to practice both of these skills.


Entrepreneurship Pathways from Ohio Department of Education

Standards addressed

Unit 4: Communications Skills

4.1 Demonstrate effective verbal communication skills.

4.2 Use effective written communications.

4.3 Communicate with staff.

4.4 Demonstrate effective group working relationships.



  • Set of geometric drawings — either the ones provided or your own — preferably laminated

  • Crayons or markers

  • Clipboards or desks for the students



  1. Explain to the students that this task measures both their listening and their communication skills.

  2. Divide the class into groups of three. Within each group, the students are designated as 1, 2 or 3. Give all of the 1s a drawing and all of the 3s a blank piece of paper plus colored pencils, markers or crayons.

    HINT: To save time, it is best to have the necessary colors of markers or crayons that match the picture in an envelope already with the picture.

  3. Tell the 1s that they should go to one side of the room. The 2s should go to the other side of the room and the 3s should remain in the middle of the room.

  4. Each of the 1s will receive a drawing with some geometric shapes on it. They are all different and are in a variety of colors. The job of the 1s is to describe the drawing to the 2s. The 2’s cannot look at the drawing and must rely only on what the 1s tell him or her. In turn, the 2s will go to the 3s, who are across the room, and tell them about the picture. The 3s will then draw what they are told.

  5. The 2s can go back and forth between the 1s and the 3s as many times as they like; however, it is good to have a time limit such as 10 minutes.

  6. Display the pictures side-by-side. Students can then see how well they communicated the content of the picture to the 3s. You can make this a contest if that engenders more enthusiasm.



An Exit Slip can be used. Give each student a card and ask them to tell how good their group did. Ask them to explain why they did very well or very poorly. This can be shared or kept privately between the student and the teacher. Copyright©2012, Northeastern Educational Television of Ohio, Inc. All rights reserved.
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