Before the invention of video players, computers and the internet, ESL teachers had to rely on their own imagination and ingenuity to make their classes entertaining. Nowadays, with information technologies giving us the tools to bring the English speaking world into the classroom, it would seem that that aspect of the teacher’s job must certainly be easier. Without a doubt, having an unlimited variety of material to choose from will surely keep the students entertained. The only trouble with this argument is that it has yet to be proven that a person can acquire a second language simply by listening to songs or watching films. Our cities and towns are full of foreigners who will never learn to speak our language well. The challenge facing today’s language teachers is to draw on their teaching skills and experience to find ways to exploit these technologies to enhance and enrich their classes.
Yes, a most demanding challenge along with the others. How do you use video and, probably, audio for your classes? The problem I face in 99,8% of my students is that they don't understand fluent English in a film. 'They speak too rapidly for me to understand' they say. I heed the problem trying to explain they don't have to understand everything, just the key words and, sometimes, sentences before we listen to or watch an episode. But of course they encounter unfamiliar words, new grammar patterns, and again they cannot follow just everything that's going on on the screen and it may be critical for their comprehending the plot. That's the biggest challenge of all.
Originally Posted by myprofe
By eric2004 in forum Ask a Teacher
Last Post: 11-Nov-2003, 04:22
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