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Brainstorming in English

Contributing ideas in English is a common problem for both native and non-native speakers of English. Brainstorming requires you to speak spontaneously and multi-task which can be both stressful and demanding – especially in a foreign language. Participants often have to listen to a lot of people speaking at the same time which can push listening and language skills to the limit. However, brainstorming also gives you a chance to solve problems, listen to new ideas and also develop your team – so don’t avoid them if you’re worried about getting stuck or your English failing you.  The following phrases look at some of the most common language you can use when brainstorming to avoid getting stuck.

Phrases for brainstorming

 Identifying objectives

  • Let’s define today’s objective.
  • Do we agree on the goal of the session?
  • So today we are…..
  • Let’s first describe our aims of the session.

 Making suggestions

  • How about we…?
  • Let’s try…
  • Why don’t we…?
  • Why not try this?

 Recording ideas

  • Let’s put that on the board.
  • Can we note that down?
  • Could we stick that idea to the wall?
  • Let’s post that on the flip chart.

Analyzing contributions

  • Let’s look more closely at…
  • Can we summarize these ideas together?
  • How about evaluating idea 1?
  • Let’s talk about the advantages and disadvantages of …

Using fillers (to give you more space to think)

  • I wonder…..
  • Hmmm, that’s interesting.
  • Let me think for a moment.

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