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Jigsaw reading/listening

Students read or listen to different information and then communicate together to complete a task.


This task has multiple goals:

  • to develop reading or listening skills
  • to learn language by requiring students to think deeply to complete the task and to use the language



Divide a text into parts or find several texts on the same topic that give different information. These could be for students to read or for students to listen to.

Design a task that the students can only complete with information from both or all of them. This could be a set of questions to answer or a chart or diagram. See Information transfer tasks for examples.

Give each student one text (or part of the text) and the complete chart, diagram or set of questions. If listening, arrange so that each student listens to one or other of the texts.

In pairs or groups, students complete the full set of questions or the whole chart or diagram without letting the other(s) read their text (that is, they must explain in Māori).


See variations on main page of Combining tasks.

“Be an expert” – instead of both students having information, one student can be the “expert” and be interviewed by others.

Example in Māori
Te Tautoko 13: Te papakāinga o ngā kararehe me ngā ngārara.


Jigsaw reading or listening requires students to process information deeply, which is good for learning.


See evaluation on main page of Combining tasks.

See also

  • Nation, I. S. P. (1988). Communication Activities. English Language Institute Occasional Publication No. 13 (pp. 34–35 – Starting with a text).
  • Nation, I. S. P. (1995). Teaching Listening and Speaking. English Language Institute Occasional Publication No. 14 (p. 133 – Be an expert).
  • Nation, I. S. P. (2000). Creating, Adapting and Using Language Teaching Techniques. English Language Institute Occasional Publication No. 20 (p. 44 – Complete the chart).

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