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    The Communicative Language Teaching Approach



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    تاريخ التسجيل : 08/04/2009
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    The Communicative Language Teaching Approach

    مُساهمة من طرف GODOF في الجمعة 26 مارس - 8:32

    All the methods described so far are symbolic of the progress foreign language teaching ideology underwent in the last century. These were methods that came and went, influenced or gave birth to new methods - in a cycle that could only be described as competition between rival methods or even passing fads in the methodological theory underlying foreign language teaching. Finally, by the mid-eighties or so, the industry was maturing in its growth and moving towards the concept of a broad "approach" to language teaching that encompassed various methods, motivations for learning English, types of teachers and the needs of individual classrooms and students themselves. It would be fair to say that if there is any one umbrella approach to language teaching that has become the accepted "norm" in this field, it would have to be the Communicative Language Teaching Approach. This is also known as CLT.

    s at Length

    Finnochiaro and Brumfit (1983:91-93) compiled this list of CLT features way back in 1983 as a means of comparing it to the Audiolingual Method. Below each feature in blue italics is the feature of ALM to which it was being compared.

    (1) CLT: Meaning is paramount.
    ALM: Attends to structure and form more than meaning.

    (2) CLT: Dialogs, if used, center around communicative functions and are not normally memorized.
    ALM: Demands more memorization of structure-based dialogs.

    (3) CLT: Contextualization is a basic premise.
    ALM: Language items are not necessarily contextualized.

    (4) CLT: Language learning is learning to communicate.
    ALM: Language Learning is learning structures, sounds or words.

    (5) CLT: Effective communication is sought.
    ALM: Mastery or "overlearning" is sought.

    (6) CLT: Drilling may occur, but peripherially.
    ALM: Drilling is a central technique.

    (7) CLT: Comprehensible pronunciation is sought.
    ALM: Native-speaker-like pronunciation is sought.

    (Cool CLT: Any device which helps the learners is accepted - varying according to their age,
    interest, etc.
    ALM: Grammatical explanation is avoided.

    (9) CLT: Attempts to communicate may be encouraged from the very beginning.
    ALM: Communicative activities only come after a long process of rigid drills and exrecises.

    (10) CLT: Judicious use of native language is accepted where feasible.
    ALM: The use of the students' native language is forbidden.

    (11) CLT: Translation may be used where students need or benefit from it.
    ALM: Translation is forbidden at early levels.

    (12) CLT: Reading and writing can start from the first day, if desired.
    ALM: Reading and writing are deferred until speech is mastered.

    (13) CLT: The target linguistic system will be learned best through the process of struggling to
    ALM: The target linguistic system will be learned through the overt teaching of the patterns of
    the system.

    (14) CLT: Communicative competence is the desired goal.
    ALM: Linguistic competence is the desired goal.

    (15) CLT: Linguistic variation is a central concept in materials and methods.
    ALM: Varieties of language are recognized but not emphasized.

    (16) CLT: Sequencing is determined by any consideration of content function, or meaning which
    maintains interest.
    ALM: The sequence of units is determined solely on principles of linguistic complexity.

    (17) CLT: Teachers help learners in any way that motivates them to work with the language.
    ALM: The teacher controls the learners and prevents them from doing anything that conflicts with
    the theory.

    (18) CLT: Language is created by the individual often through trial and error.
    ALM: "Language is habit" so error must be prevented at all costs.

    (19) CLT: Fluency and acceptable language is the primary goal: accuracy is judged not in the
    abstract but in context.
    ALM: Accuracy, in terms of formal correctness, is a primary goal.

    (20) CLT: Students are expected to interact with other people, either in the flesh, through pair and
    group work, or in their writings.
    ALM: Students are expected to interact with the language system, embodied in machines or
    controlled materials.

    (21) CLT: The teacher cannot know exactly what language the students will use.
    ALM: The teacher is expected to specify the language that students are to use.

    (22) CLT: Intrinsic motivation will spring from an interest in what is being communicated by the
    ALM: Intrinsic motivation will spring from an interest in the structure of the language.

    Top | Basic Features | Features at Length | Caveats

    Brown (1994:78-80) warns that there are certain caveats in the field of language teaching when it comes to discussing CLT and one's support of the approach, saying that that support or belief needs to be "qualified". He warns against:

    (1) Giving "lip service" to the principles of CLT (because "no one these days would admit to
    a disbelief in principles of CLT; they would be marked as a heretic") without actually
    grounding one's teaching techniques in those principles, or making sure one indeed
    understands and practices according to the characteristics that make CLT what it is.

    (2) Overdoing certain CLT features, for example engaging in real-life authentic language to
    the exclusion of helpful devices such as controlled practice, or vice versa. Moderation
    is needed in combination with common sense and a balanced approach.

    (3) The numerous interpretations of what CLT actually "is". CLT is often a catchcall term,
    and does not reflect the fact that not everyone agrees on its interpretation or application.
    Teachers need to be aware that there are many possible versions, and it is intended as
    an "umbrella" term covering a variety of methods.

    The Communicative approach does a lot to expand on the goal of creating communicative competence compared to earlier methods that professed the same objective. Teaching students how to use the language is considered to be at least as important as learning the language itself. Brown (1994:77) aptly describes the "march" towards CLT
    Communicative language teaching makes use of real-life situations that necessitate communication. The teacher sets up a situation that students are likely to encounter in real life. Unlike the audiolingual method of language teaching, which relies on repetition and drills, the communicative approach can leave students in suspense as to the outcome of a class exercise, which will vary according to their reactions and responses. The real-life simulations change from day to day. Students' motivation to learn comes from their desire to communicate in meaningful ways about meaningful topics.
    Teachers in communicative classrooms will find themselves talking less and listening more--becoming active facilitators of their students' learning (Larsen-Freeman, 1986). The teacher sets up the exercise, but because the students' performance is the goal, the teacher must step back and observe, sometimes acting as referee or monitor. A classroom during a communicative activity is far from quiet, however. The students do most of the speaking, and frequently the scene of a classroom during a communicative exercise is active, with students leaving their seats to complete a task.
    Because of the increased responsibility to participate, students may find they gain confidence in using the target language in general. Students are more responsible managers of their own

    Summary of Principles in Language Teaching
    Provided by Dr. Bill Flick, Director of ESL at Auburn
    Translation Direct Method Audio-Lingual
    Method Silent Way Suggestopedia
    1. Goals Read literature in L2. Develop mind. Learn grammar, vocabulary, and culture. Communication. Think in L2. Direct association in L2 without translation. Communication. Automaticity by
    learning new habits. Self-expression of Ss; independence from T. Everyday Comm. Tap Ss mental powers by desuggesting barriers to learning.
    2. Role of the teacher/student Traditional. T is the authority. Ss learn from the T. T-centered.
    T directs. T-centered. T provides model of L2 for imitation. T as facilitator, resource, provides what Ss need. S must trust and respect T as authority. Ss adopt childlike roles once they feel secure.
    3. Teaching/
    Learning Process? Translation. Deductive study of grammar. Memorize vocabulary. Associate L2 and meaning directly in real context.
    Use L2 only. Inductive grammar. Syllabus based on topics/ situations. New grammar and vocabulary through dialogues.
    Inductive grammar. Learning is habit formation. Ss guided to discover the structure of L2. Initial focus on accurate pronunciation. Relaxing atmosphere, music, activate whole brain + peripheral learning. Reception then activation phase.
    4. Nature of student/teacher interaction T to S. Both initiate interaction. Some S/S interaction. T-directed.
    S/S in drills. T active, but mostly silent.
    S/S interaction encouraged. T/S and S/S interaction from beginning.
    5. How are students’ feelings dealt with? N.A. N.A. N.A. Positive feelings encouraged, also S/S cooperation. Focus on confidence and sense of security via suggestions.
    6. View of language/ culture? Literary language over spoken language. Spoken language over written. Language as system of patterns/units.
    Simple to complex. Language expresses the spirit of a culture. Communication as a 2-phase process: language + extra- linguistic factors.
    7. What language skills are emphasized? Vocabulary/
    grammar. Reading/writing. Vocabulary over grammar. Focus on communication. Structure important. Listen-speak-read-
    write. Pronunciation & intonation. Structure.
    Oral before written. Vocabulary. Explicit but minimal grammar. Language use over linguistic form.
    8. Role of the native language? L1 in classroom. Two-way translation. Not used. L1 habits interfere
    with L2. Avoid L1. Used to form sounds in L2 and for feedback. Otherwise not used. L1 used in translation of dialogues. As course proceeds, L1 reduced.
    9. How does evaluation occur? Written translations. Apply grammar rules. Use of language (interview). Discrete point testing for accuracy. Continuous observation. Ss develop their own criteria. In-class performance.
    10. Treatment of errors? T supplies correct answer. Self-correction. Avoid errors by overlearning. Self-correction; peer correction. No overt correction Modelled correctly.
    11. Associated with whom? Moses Francois Gouin, Charles Berlitz Charles Fries Caleb Gattegno Georgi Lozanov

    Community Language Learning Total Physical Response Natural Approach Communicative Language Teaching
    1. Goals Communication. Promote nondefensive learning. Communication. Learning L1=
    learning L2. Communicative competence. Facilitate acquisition by providing comprehensible input (i+1). Communication in social context. Appropriacy. Functional competence.
    2. Role of the teacher/student? Counselor/client. As S assumes more responsibility, becomes independent of T. Director. T provides model of L2 for imitation. Later role reversal. T as facilitator. Primary responsibility is with S. Facilitator. Manager of learning activities. Promotes communication among Ss.
    3. Teaching/
    Learning Process Security, aggression, attention, reflection, retention, discrimination. Ss initiate speech in L1, T supplies L2. Comprehension before production. Modelling by T followed by performance. Comprehension before production. Developing model approximates L2 (L1, . . . L2). Gradual emergence of speech. Task oriented. Ss learn to communicate by negotiating meaning in real context. Activities include information gap, choice, feedback.
    4. Nature of student/teacher interaction? Changes over time. Importance placed on cooperative relationship between T/S and S/S. T speaks, Ss respond nonverbally. Later, Ss verbalize. S-centered. Both initiate interaction. S/S interaction in pair and small group activities. T arranges tasks for communication. S/S interaction.
    5. How are students’ feelings dealt with? S viewed as whole person, no separation of intellect and feelings. T "understands” Ss. Ss have fun in a nonstressful situation. Affective factors over cognitive factors. Optimal learner has low affective filter. Ss are motivated to learn thru usefulness of language functions.
    6. View of language/ culture? Language for developing critical thinking. Culture integrated with language. Spoken over written. Language as a tool for communication. Language function over linguistic form. Language in social context, for communication.
    7. What skills are emphasized? Ss determine syllabus by what they what to say. Grammar and vocabulary (initially via imperatives). Comprehension precedes production. Vocabulary over grammar. Function over form. Comprehension–e
    speech emergence. Function over form. Discourse and sociolinguistic competence + all 4 skills.
    8. Role of L1? Used in the beginning, less in later stages. Not used. L1 can be used in preproduction (comprehension) activities. Generally not used.
    9. How does evaluation occur? Integrative tests. Self-evaluation. By observation. Communicative effectiveness. Fluency over accuracy. Task oriented. Communicative tests. Fluency and accuracy.
    10. Treatment of errors? Nonthreatening. Correction by modelling. Unobtrusive correction. No error correction unless errors interfere with communication. No error correction unless errors interfere with communication.
    11. Associated with whom? Charles Curran James Asher Tracy Terrell, Stephen Krashen Various.

    Total Physical Response

    Total Physical Response is a language learning method based on the coordination of speech and action. It was developed by James Asher, a professor of psychology at San Jose State University, California. It is linkedto the trace theory of memory, which holds that the more often or intensively a memory connection is traced, the stronger the memory will be.
    Theory of language
    Asher does not directly adress his view of languag, but Richards and Rodgers state that the labeling and ordering of classroom activities seem to be build on the structural view of language.

    Theory of learning
    Asher's language learning theories seem similar to those of other behavioral psychologists. There are three principles he elaborates;
    • Second language learning is parallel to first language learning and should reflect the same naturalistic processes
    • Listening should develop before speaking
    • Children respond physically to spoken language, and adult learners learn better if they do that too
    • Once listening comprehension has been developed, speech devlops naturally and effortlessly out of it.
    • Adults should use right-brain motor activities, while the left hemisphere watches and learns
    • Delaying speech reduces stress.

    Here are some of the objectives of Total Physical Response
    • Teaching oral proficiency at a beginning level
    • Using comprehension as a means to speaking
    • Using action-based drills in the imperative form

    The syllabus
    TPR uses a sentence-based grammatical syllabus.

    Types of learning techniques and activities
    Activitis where a command is given in the imperative and the students obey the command isthe main activity in TPR.

    Asher gives step-by step accounts of how to use TPR for English or other languages.

    Total Physical Response, or TPR, involves the students listening and responding to commands given by the teacher such as "sit down" and "walk," with the complexity of the commands growing over time as the class acquires more language. Student speech is delayed, and once students indicate a willingness to talk they initially give commands to other students. Theory predicts that TPR should result in substantial language acquisition. Its content may not be always interesting and relevant for the students, but should produce better results than the audio-lingual and grammar-translation methods.
    Suggestopedia classes are small and intensive, and focus on providing a very low-stress, attractive environment (partly involving active and passive "seances" complete with music and meditation) in which acquisition can occur. Some of the students' first language is used at the beginning, but most in the target language. The role of the teacher is very important in creating the right atmosphere and in acting out the dialogues that form the core of the content. Suggestopedia seems to provide close to optimal input while not giving too much emphasis to grammar.
    What does applied linguistics research have to say about these methods? Applied research has examined the older methods of grammar-translation, audio-lingual, and cognitive-code much more than it has looked at the newer methods. There seems to be only small differences in the results of the older methods. While much research remains to be done, Total Physical Response and the other newer approaches "produce significantly better results than old approaches."
    So what is better, the classroom or the real world? "Quite simply, the role of the second or foreign language classroom is to bring a student to a point where he can begin to use the outside would for further second language acquisition.... This means we have to provide students with enough comprehensible input to bring their second language competence to the point where they can begin to understand language heard 'on the outside'.... In other words, all second language classes are transitional."
    In the real world, conversations with sympathetic native speakers who are willing to help the acquirer understand are very helpful. These native speakers engage in what is called "foreigner talk," not very different from the way that a parent would talk to a child.
    Voluntary pleasure reading is also beneficial for second language acquisition, especially as the reader is free to choose reading material that is of interest and the proper level in order to be understood.
    Taking content classes in the language that is being acquired can also be helpful to the more advanced learner, especially when the class is composed of students who are all acquiring the second language.
    How does all of the above affect our views on achievement testing? As students will gear their studying to the type of tests they expect to take, the kinds of language tests that are given is very important. "Achievement tests...should meet this requirement: preparation for the test, or studying for the test, should obviously encourage the student to do things that will provide more comprehensible input and the tools to gain even more input when the class is over." With this in mind, general reading comprehension tests are helpful, as would be a test that would encourage students to participate in conversations and employ the tools of communicative competence.
    Assuming that the conclusions in this book are correct, many new classroom language materials need to be developed. These materials should focus on providing much comprehensible input to beginning and intermediate students and should provide them with the means to gain even more input outside the classroom. Such materials should only focus on grammatical rules that are easy to learn and apply. Readers should have much more reading material in them and much fewer exercises and should have enough content that students can choose which topics to read about

      الوقت/التاريخ الآن هو الجمعة 20 يناير - 9:49