Course: Teaching of English (519)
Semester: Spring, 2017
ASSIGNMENT No. 2
Q.1 Briefly describe some techniques of teaching English. Which technique has more value in teaching of English? Justify your answer with examples.
Education, like almost every other area of our society, has evolved in leaps and bounds in recent years. Traditional teaching techniques, based mainly on a teacher explaining a topic and students taking notes, may still be useful on occasion, but education today revolves more around encouraging the student to awaken their curiosity and desire to learn.
A number of different teaching techniques have emerged due to this change in education. Many of these teaching techniques are not actually new however! The use of technology in the classroom has simply given education a new lease of life allowing us to approach old ideas in new ways.
Outlined below are some popular teaching techniques that have arisen from the integration of technology in education.
6 Teaching Techniques You Should Know:
1. Flipped Classroom (Inverting your class):
The Flipped Classroom Model basically involves encouraging students to prepare for the lesson before class. Thus, the class becomes a dynamic environment in which students elaborate on what they have already studied. Students prepare a topic at home so that the class the next day can be devoted to answering any questions they have about the topic. This allows students to go beyond their normal boundaries and explore their natural curiosity.
GoConqr’s free online learning tools can be integrated into the Flipped Classroom teaching model. Using GoConqr, you can easily share resources with a group, in this case a class, allowing students to study these resources from home and prepare for the next class.
2. Design Thinking (Case Method):
This technique is based on resolving real-life cases through group analysis, brainstorming, innovation and creative ideas. Although “Design Thinking” is a structured method, in practice it can be quite messy as some cases may have no possible solution.
However, the Case Method prepares students for the real world and arouses their curiosity, analytical skills and creativity. This technique is often used in popular MBA or Masters classes to analyze real cases experienced by companies in the past.
Ewan McIntosh, an advocate of Design Thinking, created The Design Thinking School as part of his “No Tosh” consulting group. No Tosh harnesses the creative practices of some of the best media and tech companies in the world to coach teaching methods to implement the concept. Design Thinking for Educators also provides teachers with an online toolkit with instructions to explore Design Thinking in any classroom.
Curiosity is the main driver of learning. As a basic principle of learning, it makes little sense to force students to memorize large reams of text that they will either begrudgingly recall or instantly forget. The key is to let students focus on exploring an area which interests them and learn about it for themselves.
A perfect example of a teaching technique based on self-learning is outlined by Sugata Mitra at the TED conference. In a series of experiments in New Delhi, South Africa and Italy, the educational researcher Sugata Mitra gave children self-supervised access to the web. The results obtained could revolutionize how we think about teaching. The children, who until then did not even know what the internet was, were capable of training themselves in multiple subjects with unexpected ease.
A common technique for exploring self-learning is the use of Mind Maps. Teachers can create a central node on a Mind Map and allow students the freedom to expand and develop ideas. For example, if the focus is the Human Body, some students may create Mind Maps on the organs, Bones or Diseases that affect the human body. Later the students would be evaluated according to the Mind Maps they have created and could collaborate with each other to improve each others Mind Maps and come to a more comprehensive understanding of the Human Body.
Learning through the use of games is one of the teaching methods that has already been explored especially in elementary and preschool education. By using games, students learn without even realizing. Therefore, learning through play or ‘Gamification‘ is a learning technique that can be very effective at any age. It is also a very useful technique to keep students motivated.
The teacher should design projects that are appropriate for their students, taking into account their age and knowledge, while making them attractive enough to provide extra motivation. One idea may be to encourage students to create quizzes online on a certain topic. Students can challenge their peers to test themselves and see who gets a higher score. In this way, students can enjoy the competition with peers while also having fun and learning.
5. Social Media:
A variant of the previous section is to utilize social media in the classroom. Students today are always connected to their social network and so will need little motivation to get them engaged with social media in the classroom. The ways you can use teaching methods are quite varied as there are hundreds of social networks and possibilities.
A good example is the initiative carried out by the Brazilian Academy of Languages “Red Ballon”, which encouraged students to review the tweets of their favorite artists and correct grammatical errors that they committed in an effort to improve their English language skills!
6. Free Online Learning Tools:
There is an array of free online learning tools available which teachers can use to encourage engagement, participation and a sense of fun into the classroom. Teachers can create an interactive and dynamic classroom environment using, for example, online quizzes to test student’s knowledge.
If you haven’t used GoConqr’s free online learning tools yet, sign up now to create Mind Maps, Flashcards, Quizzes, Course and even Flowcharts. Encourage your students to sign up to GoConqr too so that you can create a Group and invite each of your students to become a member. This means you can share study resources directly with each student online and even apply the Flipped Classroom Model to your teaching methods.
Q.2 What is meant by the teaching of prose and pronunciation skills of English? Why it is important for English teacher to familiarize themselves with new techniques or skills?
Importance of teaching prose teaching literature
Literature is an art just the painting, sculpture and other piece of art. Literature presents the picture of the age social attitude, political situation, people’s style etc. It involves sophisticated skills which in turn involve the intelligence, the memory, the emotions and psychological factors. Prose reading itself is a skill, which can be taught.
The most ancient literary texts are in poetry not in prose. But prose has its own importance as compare to poetry. Prose was used for many purposes such as baying and selling, seeking justice, making war and peace and recording events of every day life.
There is a rhythm in prose as well as in poetry. In poems it can be called a regulated irregularity. There are no rules for judging it in prose except one’s natural heart. There is no fixed standard of rhythm in prose. When rhythmical prose becomes material, it is neither prose nor blank verse. Good writer’s avoid blank verse in their prose, but are not always safe from it. Short sentences are very effective for this purpose.
Do not condemn any writer because he repeats the same word. Pakistani students are so afraid of using the same word again in a paragraph, that often their attempts to avoid doing so become ludicrous. It is never the repetition that jars on the reader but the wrong use of repetition. If repetition is clumsy and meaningless that it is a fault. But great authors repeat word in such a way that repetition instead of jarring becomes a great art.
Complexity of prose:
If prose is used as a vehicle for communicating deep and imaginative truths, it becomes complex. In this style it is not important to understand the literal meaning of the words but the real situation is that to understand the philosophic sense of words. This brings us to the major objectives of teaching of learners hot to read prose.
The Objectives of Teaching Prose
A source of information
The main objective to enable the student to recognize the letters and words he sees. This is based on the elementary skill of literacy. The printed words are a symbol. This means that they stand for something concrete abstract known to human being consider the following word. “CAT” We can write this word in different ways. Cat or CAT, but if we have understand which letter stand which sound we shall pronounce is as “Kaet”. Then our mind will tell us that this sound itself is a symbol i.e. it stands for an animal with which we are familiar. For instance, if we knew basic English and we fond the following visual symbols before as THIS IS A DOG. This line is easily converting into spoken words phonological symbols. After saying or reading this line we can easily understand the spoken line is pointed out an animal, which we call the Dog. If we have understood this we have fulfilled the first objective of reading prose, which is “to get information through written words”.
Broaching the mind
Literature is not only source of information but is also conveying values. We know and understand the social values, religious and political values. Literature develops the standards of judging what is right and what is wrong, good and bad. It these values are different one may be forced to think whether his values are correct or not.
Once a pupil has understanding literature devices as irony, symbols metaphor, he has wasted the art of understanding literary the awareness of life’s problems, to examine one’s own attitude toward other people.
Source of pleasure
Intelligent reading is the source of positive enjoyment. Many writers pack a lot of meaning in their writing. Some readers miss the clues and real meanings provided by the writer. Teacher should elaborate the real and actual meanings of the specific writing. If readers understand the real meanings of any writing pupil will s tart enjoying reading and some will go on to live life in which intellectual and emotional pleasure based on reading will for an important part.
Why it is important for English teacher to familiarize themselves with new techniques or skills:
I would like to make some comments on improving students’ speaking skills. Making students speak more English in the classroom is not only a matter of “forcing” them to speak. This demands good preparation of proper material and implementation must be progressive and systematic which demands more teacher’s workload. I mean, lots of those teachers who learned what and how to do in the classroom, as a teacher, simply don’t do as they are supposed to. They seem as though they don’t like to work much. No way! Teachers need to work much so they accomplish the teacher’s role. A few tips for teachers in general:
1) reduce your TTT (Teacher Talking Time) in the classroom, by giving simple and clear instructions, by asking one or two students to show (by means of speaking) that they understood the task instructions, and also by asking other students to answer a student’s question. Being a teacher of English is different from being a lecturer.
2) Increase STT (Student Talking Time), again, by asking other students to answer a student’s question, by showing pictures related to the topic of the class and, without saying a single word, eliciting students’ participation.
3) avoiding yes/no questions; prefere those questions that make students speak in order to make themselves clear.
4) Attention to your way of correcting students. Sometimes, even when your intention is simply to help a certain student, you may make things even worse to them. For instance, if you want to show a certain mistake to a student, instead of saying “Oh! this is not correct, …” or “You made a mistake, …” or “Oops! don’t say this or that,…” etc you’d better say “Maybe you should change this or that …” or “Why don’t you use …”, or “Well, it may be even better if you do/say …” or “Very good try, but you’d better say/do …” or “Nice try/beginning. Now why don’t you …?” or “Good participation/answer, now I will make it better…” etc.
5) When watching student A for mistakes, don’t be so close to them because this will make them even shier. Instead, get close to another student or simply stand back or pretend being interested in something different, picking up a book or going back to your table etc. This will make students feel more confortable and increase STT.
6) When your students are having fluency practice (for instance, free conversation), which is totally different from pronunciation or grammar practice, never correct them, unless something really serious happen. Let them talk! Let them feel that they can communicate in despite of their mistakes in pronunciation, grammar etc. Praise them for speaking!!! Show satisfaction!!!
7) Not only encourage them to watch movies. Give them tips on what and how to select what really matters, based on what they are interested in. For instance, taking notes on useful sentences/phrases and thinking about which environment or opportunity they could put those selected sentences in action (among friends, with a teacher, at work, at the club etc), just for practice.
8) Never forget! Participating/speaking is what really matters in this case in question, and when a student participates (answering questions, clarifying, helping other in English, arguing etc) ACCEPT that as something GOOD, despite of being right or wrong, otherwise you take the risk of making your student shier and shier (lack of participation).