One of the major skill sets of a great language teacher is the ability to “prompt” students so they will generate language. It isn’t easy and with time a teacher becomes better at replying, prompting, leaving unfinished their utterances so that students are put into a position of “having to communicate”. It is a skill that even gets more refined as the teacher adapts and scaffolds at just the right level/language. Teachers also get better at moving things along – the big challenge of pacing.
ELT Buzz Teaching Resources has so many online language generators that help teachers out in this regard. Generators and prompts keep the pace level high and keep students so engaged. I’ve used them and 30 minutes will go by in the wink of an eye. No boredom with them at all. I’ve put together many that can with a click of a mouse, start students talking. Also, in ppt and paper/flashcard form. Here’s a list – try them with student and I’m sure you’ll see they work like a charm. The teacher just keeps circulating as students take turns in groups, answering the prompt.