Effective methods of teaching English

Theoretical aspect of effective methods of teaching. The bases, effective ways and techniques of teaching a foreign language (communicative teaching method; project method; the method of debates; games and role play). Practical aspect of ways of teaching.

Рубрика Иностранные языки и языкознание
Вид курсовая работа
Язык английский
Дата добавления 10.11.2009
Размер файла 375,5 K

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Once again, break the students into groups of three. Name a problem with which everyone is familiar--say, how to reduce the number of homeless people on the streets. Then assign each group a familiar figure from history, fiction, or current events, and have them determine how that person would solve the problem. For example, what if Martin Luther King, Jr. were to tackle the homeless problem? What if the Ninja Turtles were to try it? Barbara Walters? General Schwarzkopf? As a starting point, suggest that the students consider what particular expertise the person would bring to the problem and what his or her objectives would be.

Not Just for Breakfast

Place a box of ready-to-eat cereal (like Cheerios or Trix) on a desk or ledge at the front of the room. Ask the students to generate as many uses for the product as they can in two minutes. (Some of the more creative suggestions students might come up with--using the cereal as fertilizer or a component in jewelry.)

Housemates Roleplay

Duration: 20-25 min

Aim: Oral fluency practice; politely disagreeing

Summary: Two housemates try to resolve their conflicts.


This short roleplay activity requires no materials apart from a blackboard. The situation is actually roleplayed twice, with some phrases for "politely disagreeing" introduced before the second round. The idea behind this is that the first round will hopefully help the students realise the importance of being polite in order to avoid arguments, and so they will be more receptive to the new language which helps them achieve this.


Write this on the blackboard before the activity:


* I can't live without music!

* I have a bad memory.

* I'm a bit short of money right now.


* I can't concentrate on my study.

* I'm always tripping over your things.

* Didn't we agree to take turns buying food?


Explain only that these sentences are from two different people, A and B. Ask, "Who are these two people, and what are they talking about?" Give the students a minute or two to discuss it with a partner (make it clear that they should only discuss your question, not attempt to roleplay the situation yet!).

Elicit the fact that A and B are housemates, and then explain the situation in more detail: they are not close friends, but they are living together in order to save money. However, lately B has been quite annoyed by some of A's habits. Write these habits on the blackboard, explaining them at the same time:

A: * plays loud music (all the time!)

* leaves his/her things all over the house (books, clothes, bags, etc on chairs, tables, and even the floor)

* doesn't pass on messages (if one of B's friends calls and leaves a message, A never remembers to pass it on)

* never buys food (when they moved in they agreed that A would buy the food one week, B the next week, and so on)

Ask who probably starts the conversation. B, of course. Suggest a polite conversation starter, such as:

"Could I have a word with you please?"

Then get the students to roleplay the situation in pairs. Afterwards, get some feedback from a few pairs. Was the conflict resolved, and if so how?

Now introduce and drill some phrases for politely disagreeing:

* No offense, but... (I don't like your music)

* I see your point, but... (I have a bad memory)

* I understand your feelings, but... (I can't concentrate)

Now get the students to swap roles and repeat the activity, making use of the new phrases. It's a good idea to get them to swap partners too--this should help keep the momentum up. At the end, get more feedback on how their conversations turned out.


If you intend to ask the students to swap roles and also swap partners before the second round, you should plan it carefully to avoid wasting time. In most of my classes, the desks are arranged in three columns which are each two desks wide, so here is the way I managed it: for the first round, I assigned roles so that everybody on the left-hand desk was A and the others were B (check that everybody knows their role by getting them to put their hands up). Then for the second round, I simply asked all the "A" students to stand up and move to the desk in front of them.


Short Roleplays, each character's three prompt sentences could be written on a roleplay card instead of on the blackboard. In this case, the 4 conflicts still need to be written on the board.

Find the Differences

Duration: 10-15 min

Aim: Oral fluency practice

Summary: Students speak in order to find the differences between two similar pictures.


This is a well-known activity, and a classic example of the principle of an "information gap" in communicative activities. If you put two pictures in front of a pair of students and tell them to talk about the differences, there is not much to motivate them. But if you arrange the activity so that each student only sees one picture, then an information gap is created. Cooperating with their partner to identify the differences becomes an act of genuine communication.

Although suitable pairs of pictures are provided in many modern textbooks, this activity is included here to remind teachers that it is not too difficult to create picture pairs by oneself, especially with access to the internet. For example, cartoons can be adapted. A suitable picture can be found to fit with almost any theme-based lesson.


The first step is to find a suitable picture. These might come from books and magazines, or from the internet. For example, try a search on Google Images (note that the Advanced Image Search allows you to limit your results to black and white, or a particular size). There are also several websites which sell cartoons online, such as CartoonStock.

In Discussions that Work (Cambridge University Press, 1981), Penny Ur writes:

"The preparation of such pictures is fairly simple and fun to do. You need a black and white line drawing (not photograph) with a fair amount of detail but without shades of grey (these do not reproduce well). The content of the drawing should not entail vocabulary beyond the level of the students. You photocopy it and then make the requisite number of alterations to the original drawing, using either a black fibre-tip pen (for additions) or white type-correcting fluid (for erasures)."

Alternatively, the modifications could be done on a computer using even the simplest "paint" application. If you create any picture pairs in this way, please send them to us for inclusion on this page.

See the Resources section for examples.

You need to make enough copies so that each student will receive either one copy of "Version A" or one copy of "Version B".


If the students are already familiar with the concept, then you just need to repeat the "check" questions. But the first time you do this activity, it is helpful to explain the concept using the blackboard: draw two simple pictures with one or two differences and explain that partners will each receive one version. They must not show their pictures to each other, instead they have to talk to each other and circle the n differences. Check:

* Are these pictures the same? (no)

* How many differences are there? (n)

* Can you show your partner? (no)

* What do you do when you find a difference? (circle it)

After the activity, you can either provide the answers, or elicit the answers from the students, or simply tell the students to put the pictures side by side so that they can check whether the differences they found really exist or not.


From all above-stated it is possible to draw the following conclusions.

The purpose of this work was to discover the most effective ways of teaching a foreign language to children.

For achievement of the purpose the works of home and foreign authors on the given problem have been studied.

In formation of interest to a subject the huge role is played by the person of the teacher. Therefore a pledge of successful mastering a foreign language by the pupilss is professionalism of the teacher which should in the work not only take into account the methodical principles underlying teaching, but also to be in constant search of new receptions and means of teaching which will recover a lesson, will make it fascinating, cognitive and remembered.

The most useful for this purpose are the following receptions and methods: methods of constructivism, communicative methods, methods of projects and discussions, games and role games, etc.

In course work have been analysed all these methods and the receptions raising quality of training to foreign language on the basis of studying of various techniques of teaching, used in work with children. Many of receptions can be applied with success at teaching children of younger and more advanced age. The resulted techniques are interesting from many points of view, simple in application and can add essentially existing operating time of teachers foreign (including English) language.

While some of the methods are let be omitted by the teacher (like silent way, synthetic or analytic (every teacher choose his own way to work with students) all of these must be included in the learning process. They act like general concepts giving you a full length of techniques to apply within one method. They don't give strict directions of how to apply them but a wide space for creative work.


1. Кривобокова И.Я., Лотарева Т.В. Некоторые приемы обучения английскому языку на начальном этапе // Иностранные языки в школе. - 1989. - № 1. - с. 22-23; c. 52

2. Негневицкая Е.И., Никитенко З.Н., Артамонова И.А. Книга для учителя. М., Просвещение, 1997.

3. Витт Н.В. Эмоциональное воздействие речи учителя иностранного языка. // Иностранные языки в школе. - 1999. - №6. - c. 34

4. Корнаева З.В. Об отборе коммуникативного минимума для начального этапа обучения в средней школе. // Иностранные языки в школе. - 1989. -№ 1. - с. 36.

5. Бим И.Л., Биболетова М.3. Возможные формы и содержание курсов обучения иностранным языкам в начальной школе. // Иностранные языки в школе. - 2001. - № 2. - с. 3.

6. Jonassen, D. H. Constructing learning environments on the web: Engaging students in meaningful learning. EdTech 99: Educational Technology Conference and Exhibition 1999: Thinking Schools, Learning Nation. - 1999 - p. 45-46

7. David Nunan. Communicative Language Teaching - 2204

8. Shaw, Corsini, Blake & Mouton, 1980; Horner & McGinley, 1998

9. Brown, H. D. (2001). Teaching by principles: An attractive approach to language pedagogy. New York: Longman

10. Scott, W. A., & Ytreberg, L. H. (2000). Teaching English to children. New York: Longman

11. Rodrieguez, R. J. & White, R. N. (2003) From role play to the real world. Rowley, MA: Newbury House Publishers, Inc.

12. Horner & McGinley, 2000

13. Berer, Marge and Frank, Christine and Rinvolucri, Mario. Challenge to think. Oxford University Press, 2002

Internet Key







Appendix 1

KWL Strategy

Purpose of the Strategy:

Bellanca (1992) explains that the purpose of the KWL strategy is to help students identify prior knowledge and experience as a bridge to a new concept, lesson, or unit (p.10).

Teacher's Role:

In the KWL strategy the teacher serves as a facilitator of learning in the classroom, utilizing the students to create part of the lesson plan and identifying key concepts that need to be addressed before the lesson ends. Bellanca (1992) stated that it is the teacher's role to plan a strategy to ensure students will have the questions they raised answered before the lesson ends.

Learner's Role:

In the KWL strategy the learner is asked to construct their learning experience by identifying what they know, analyze what information they do not know, and reflect upon what they learned. The strategy asks that the learner work as part of a small and large group to brainstorm ideas about the concept or topic. This strategy helps students to realize that learning is an ongoing process by asking them “what I want to know now” (Marzano & Pickering, 1997).

Prior Knowledge Needed by the Learner:

The process of asking good questions is essential to this educational strategy. Because of this, it is also important that students are able to ask appropriate questions that help them develop a deeper sense of understanding about the concept or topic. However, Bellanca (1992) noted that questioning is not an intuitive process and may be difficult for students who have grown up in “one right answer” classroom may lack motivation and/or the know-how to ask questions.

Bellanca (1992) also discusses the importance of using the DOVE guidelines to help students in the brainstorming process. Therefore, students need to have an understanding of what the DOVE guidelines are:

D = Defer judgment; accept others' ideas; avoid criticism and put-downs

O = Originality is OKAY

V = Variety and Vastness of ideas; explore many ideas; search for the best ideas

E = Expand by piggybacking on others' ideas; associate; build on others.

Students also need to have the ability to recall information (K step), analyze information (W Step, and evaluate what has been learned (L step). With practice and use of this strategy in the classroom, students may further develop these skills but they are important to have as they begin to work with this strategy.

Steps/Parts of the Strategy:

There are several easy steps when utilizing the KWL strategy. In essence, a teacher helps students identify what they already know about the topic, what they would like to know, and what they have learned (Ogle, 1986 in Marzano & Pickering, 1997). However, Bellanca (1992) offers a much more detailed list of steps to help teachers use the KWL strategy in the classroom:

1. Draw the KWL chart on the board or on the overhead.

Topic: ___________________________________




2. Label each column and explain its use (the K column is for things they already know about the topic, the W column asks them what they want to know about it, and the L column is for what they learned after they complete the lesson or topic).

3. Invite students to brainstorm all they can recall about the topic from a variety of sources (parents, friends, media, books, movies, and other classes they may have taken).

4. After the brainstorming session, allow time for students to analyze the K column by eliminating wrong information, clarifying information, and noting the most important.

5. Begin to focus on the W column, asking the students to identify what they want to know about the topic. *students may need additional coaching and examples during this phase because some students have not been trained at questioning a topic*

6. Ask the students to identify which items they want to know are the most important questions that need to be asked.

7. Design a lesson which covers and all of the answers the students asked.

8. Review the topic by asking the students to complete the L column - what they have learned.

9. If questions still remain from the W column, you should discuss the information with the entire class.

10. Review with the students how to use and set up the KWL chart and ask where they might use a KWL chart or even why bridging information is important.

11. For additional lessons, pair up students in groups of three and have them use the KWL strategy on a sheet of paper, choosing a few groups of share their ideas with the class after they have brainstormed ideas, and at the end of each lesson.

What is Jigsaw?

Jigsaw is a cooperative learning strategy that enables each student of a “home” group to specialize in one aspect of a learning unit. Students meet with members from other groups who are assigned the same aspect, and after mastering the material, return to the “home” group and teach the material to their group members.

Just as in a jigsaw puzzle, each piece--each student's part--is essential for the completion and full understanding of the final product. If each student's part is essential, then each student is essential. That is what makes the Jigsaw instructional strategy so effective.

What is its purpose?

Jigsaw learning allows students to be introduced to material and yet maintain a high level of personal responsibility.

The purpose of Jigsaw is to develop teamwork and cooperative learning skills within all students. In addition it helps develop a depth of knowledge not possible if the students were to try and learn all of the material on their own. Finally, because students are required to present their findings to the home group, Jigsaw learning will often disclose a student's own understanding of a concept as well as reveal any misunderstandings.

How can I do it?

In its simplest form, the Jigsaw instructional strategy is when:

1. Each student receives a portion of the materials to be introduced;

2. Students leave their "home" groups and meet in "expert" groups;

3. Expert groups discuss the material and brainstorm ways in which to present their understandings to the other members of their “home” group;

4. The experts return to their “home” groups to teach their portion of the materials and to learn from the other members of their “home” group

In more detail, and written from a teacher's perspective, to conduct a Jigsaw in your classroom:

1. Assign students to “home” teams of 4 or 5 students (generally their regular cooperative learning teams). Have students number off within their teams.

2. Assign study topics to “home” team members by giving them an assignment sheet or by listing their numbers and corresponding roles on the board.

3. Have students move to “expert” groups where everyone in the group has the same topic as themselves.

4. Students work with members of their “expert” group to read about and/or research their topic. They prepare a short presentation and decide how they will teach their topic to their “home” team. You may want students to prepare mini-posters while in their “expert” Groups. These posters can contain important facts, information, and diagrams related to the study topic.

5. Students return to their “home” teams and take turns teaching their team members the material. I find it helpful to have team members take notes or record the information in their journals in some way. You may want them to complete a graphic organizer or chart with the new information.

6. Involve the class in a whole-group review of all the content you expect them to master on the assessment. Administer an individual assessment to arrive at individual grades.

How could I use, adapt or differentiate it?

· This strategy is great for differentiation; teachers (and students) can develop any number of possible RAFT's based on the same text that can be adjusted for skill level and rigor.

· Paula Rutherford's book, Instruction for All Students, offers a comprehensive list of "Products and Perspectives" from which to chose.

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