Friday, January 11, 2013

The importance of speaking

*- (Introduction ) The importance of speaking
*-What our pupils say about their difficulties in speaking English? (A questionnaire analysis)
*-Sources of difficulty
*-Ways of improving speaking
*-Continuous assessment ( Speaking  assessment)
*-Sources of difficulty
A. Curriculum
B. Teachers
C. Pupils
D. Facilities
E. Environment

A. Curriculum
1.One course of English is not enough .
2.The number of periods is not enough ( 5-6) range between (35-45 mts)
2.Teaching/learning strategies at schools
3.Lack of curriculum design .
A. One speaking activity each unit .
B. Expressions and language used is very simple .
C. Activities don’t meet needs and interests.
D. Exercises don’t provoke creativity or challenges to pupils minds .
C. Lessons are not related to real life or pupils daily life .
D. There not enough exercises after each activity .
E. There no enough references for teachers to use ( no books)

B. Teachers
*Types of teachers:
A. Old Fashion teachers
1.Relay only on smart ps
2.Use course book rigidly as a cook book .
3.Use materials available only .
4.Ps are always seated in lines .
5.Tests are the only way of assessment.
6.Lesson is always teacher talk:
a. asks questions       b. reads tasks
c. gives instructions   d. explains vocabulary

B. Modern Teachers
1-invlove all ps
2.Creats new methods and materials
2.Use different methods of assessment
3.Use technology in teaching
4.Involve ps in designing materials
5.Encourage creative thinking and problem solving
6.Encourage ps to use technology to search for language.
7.Encourage group work
8.Encourage creativity , self learning , discovery , and individual learning
9.Give time  for :
a. Language games                              b. songs/rhymes
c. Short spoken descriptions                d. conduct presentations 
e. Holds competitions in language        f. encourage announcement

C. Pupils
Pupils don't talk or say anything:
*Peer pressure :ps have opinions , but   afraid , shy or worried about what the others might say or think .
*Lack of motivation
*Lack of support
*More actively participants , feel confident in their opinions and express them easily making the less confident more embarrassed of their answers.

When ps work in pairs or groups , they just end up chatting in their own language
-Pupils don’t have an opinion on the subject .
-Pupils have an opinion , but feel can’t convey the exact meaning
-When giving an opinion , they want to state it the same manner that they are capable of in their native language .
-When engaged in authentic communicative situations , they often lack some of the vocabulary or language items they need. So they can’t keep the interaction for an extended period of time .

D. Facilities:
1.Lack of supplementary materials ( stories, magazines, newspapers, books, dictionaries, TVs , videos, CD programs, computer games…etc.)
2.Listening materials are not enough in schools ( tape recorders)
3.The need for language recourse centers in schools .

E. Environment:
Poor and unauthentic language used :
1.Class mates
2.School environment
4.Hospitals , clinics , banks
6.Language institutes in summer.

Ways of Improving speaking
Where to practice speaking ? school          2.outside school

Types of activities:
Indoor activities:
*.Ps should be encouraged to take risks .That is ps should use all their available resources to communicate without being afraid of making errors .
*.Provide ps with listening materials and videos .To be good speakers , it is necessary to be good listeners .
*.Listening to real life situations is an excellent way to expose ps to different ways in which things can be said .
*.Help ps by providing sets of fillers and hesitation devices which help when ps feel that they are encountering a problem ... " well , you know , as a matter of fact , what do you call .....?
*Teachers can add up new materials. Tasks could be replaced with better ones.
*Teachers can bring authentic materials to class ( Youth observer) to start discussions.
*Class readers , instead of been read in class why not act events ?!
*Employ role-play , debates , topic discussions …..etc. 
*.Creating a good English environment will help ps to acquire language easily .
Classroom language:
1.Simple greetings: Hello ,Good morning
2.Social English :Did you have a nice weekend?
4.Asking permission :Can I …?
Why not to keep cards , each time a pupil wants something pick up the card .!
5.Communication strategies :fillers and hesitation devices

Outdoor activities:
1.Establish English Clubs
2.Prepare English Newsletters
3.Set up an English library
4.Encourage Ps to make materials
5.Conduct workshops training teachers to use new methods of teaching
6.Show English movies , films, programs
7.Prepare English assemblies
8.Train Ps to act out short plays
9.Go on trips to hospitals , banks, companies ( where English is spoken)
10.Prepare open days
11.Language races in speaking , reading and writing
12.Organise Speaking courses for Ps
13.Organise speaking courses for other subjects’ teachers.

Where ?   English is all around
1.At home
2.At shops , markets and shopping centers
3.At hospitals and pharmacies
4.At banks
5.Computer games
6.Internet sites
7.Phone calls

Continuous assessment  ( speaking  assessment)
Does it help ?  How ?
How can it be used more effectively ?

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