Taylor

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Taylor

e. Because grammar rules and usage can be perceived as dry and overwhelming ESL students, it is vitally important for the students to be cognitively and affectively engaged.

1. Try to stay within the “twenty second rule†of teaching grammar rules.
2. Incorporate aspects of guided learning whenever possible. When students can “discover†grammar on their own, the learning becomes more meaningful and permanent.
3. Grammar should be presented and reviewed through varied avenues and kinds of affectively engaging activities. Grammar should not be “taught at†students; the danger therein is that students will mentally check-out or become overwhelmed.

c. There is no “best way†to teach grammar. Conversely, by teaching grammar both inductively and deductively, more learning types are likely to be optimally engaged.

1. I think that grammar lessons can be most effective when they combine inductive and deductive reasoning. This could be accomplished by introducing a lesson inductively, and following up with board diagrams or a hand-out, to offer concrete rules to the students who want them.

i. I agree with the statement entirely, and believe that communicative practice is key to grammar acquisition. A successful grammar lesson should imply that students understand not only the semantics, but use within the language.

1. Grammar lessons should involve significant pair and group work aimed at creatively producing the new grammar in positive affect surroundings, through information gap activities, word fills, etc.
2. Students should not only expand their grammar lexis, but should have opportunities to strengthen and continue verbally practicing the grammar they have already been introduced to.

f. I agree with the statement that “grammar should be studied in its typical contexts of use, rather than in isolation.â€Â

1. Grammar learning should take place within a context. Language doesn’t exist within a vacuum, and the methods of teaching grammar should reflect that.
2. Students should gain the ability to differentiate lexis and grammar with similar meaning, because the usage is often contextually differentiated. For example, an English Language learner could perceive “excuse me†and “I’m sorry†as synonymous; contextual nuances should be incorporated into grammar instruction.

j. Although grammar can present unique obstacles to English Language teachers, both in tedium and difficulty, creativity and variety can usurp these problems.

1. Grammar lessons should incorporate a range of activity and present students with multiple ways to comprehend the new grammar.
2. A teacher with a pessimistic outlook on teaching grammar is somewhat of a self-fulfilling prophecy. While it is necessary to be aware of potential boredom and comprehension difficulties, a teacher’s enthusiasm and strategic lesson planning can diffuse many traditional grammar woes.
3. By making clear SMART objectives for lessons, a teacher can gauge how well a group in understanding a concept, decreasing the likelihood that students will be left frustrated and in the dark.


Language learning is difficult; student errors are expected and should be used to further knowledge, not shut down communication.

  1. Speaking mistakes can be addressed and corrected at the end of a class period - no singular student will have to feel reprimanded and the entire class's attention can be focused on the (probably quite common) mistakes.(When you say this, do you mean the common mistakes made during the lesson? This seems a bit unclear to me.)(Most definitely. So when you say the teacher should be actively available as a resource, is that what you believe the primary role of a teacher should be?)
  2. Engage in frequent peer-group games - pressure on individuals is decreased and students can build important in-class relationships.
No one 'method' will always be the most effective.
  1. A teacher should have an excellent working understanding of all methods and feel relatively comfortable incorporating various methods into the classroom as necessary. (Versatility is key...)
  2. I think it's important for teachers to be constantly evaluating the effectiveness of any particular method, game etc. That way, methods and activities that work well can be strengthened and those that don't do not (bit of confusing wording here. Maybe try to make it more succinct ?)(This wording is a bit confusing, I think. You're basically saying that this belief should hold true regardless of age, right?) 2. Over-use of materials is impractical, and rote memorization (albeit, sometimes necessary) shouldn't be the ultimate focus of the classroom. Both of these teaching practices can disengage learners and put the off from language learning.(You discredit "rote memorization", but then say it is necessary. You should probably explain your thinking on that.)
By not jumping down throats or causing a fuss, students are free to focus on communication, and can do so in a non-threatening environment. A related belief is that student affect is key to a productive learning environment and should be actively established in the classroom. 1. Working consciously to establish a good rapport with students; I think it is important to show a great deal of respect to students from the beginning and to be actively available as a resource that students are comfortable seeking help from. continue to resurface ineffectually and student's preferences can be taken into account. Language learning can and should be engaging and stimulating. 1. I think this belief would look different depending on student age, but regardless of age, students should be engaged in activities that are interesting. I think learning can occur most naturally in that context.
(This looks great overall, all of your teaching beliefs are insightful and strong, and are well-supported by your practices. My main concern, albeit only superfluous, is that this is hard to read when it's all in one block paragraph like this; I had a hard time telling where one belief ended and another began. You might want to separate them a bit so it's easier to distinguish. Also, you use "I think" alot, which isn't really necessary; these are your beliefs, and if you really believe in them it's much stronger to leave out those ambiguous-sounding phrases which weaken your statements overall. But these are minor things, overall I think it's solid. Nice job. - Gordon

P.S.; In the number of things we are supposed to include above, I think you need to elaborate a bit more on the following: The role of English (Kuo/Jenkins divide), Accuracy/Fluency, Instructions, and Roles of the teacher.)


Peer grouping should be flexible and relevant to the activity at hand.
1.Streaming students into competency level groups should be done on an as-need basis, as using "fixed" groups could deter lower level students.
2. By making groups more or less random, students won't fall into the trap of always communicating to the same person, and will be able to adapt to different communication styles.

A teacher should fill many roles during the courses of a lesson, to best fit the varying needs of the classroom.
1. Through storytelling and performed dialogues, teachers can act as language models and offer much needed comprehensible input.
2. While acting as facilitators and organizers, teachers can conduct activities that help students turn comprehensible input into output.

Recognizing and adapting lessons to all types of learners is important in keeping classroom learning effective for every student.
1. Lessons should always include both auditory and visual enforcements of the day's learning objectives, one style of teaching should not monopolize the other.
2. As often as possible, lessons should incorporate kinesthetic aspects as well - moving around, active group games, etc.

While technological resources are helpful, engages students and an enthusiastic teacher are the only required resources for language learning.
1. High-tech classroom additions like smartboards should be a tool to learning concepts - not a method or a reliance.
2. Creativity with lessons and limited materials can more that compensate for a shortage of more "standard" resources.

Instructions to activities should be clear and concise - less is better.
1. Instructions can be given as an activity progresses. By breaking them into chunks, instructions are more likely to be comprehended.
2. Mime, gesture, and exaggerated vocalization will all help students comprehend what a teacher is explaining; students can infer from the hints to fill in lexical gaps.

Errors in speech should be addressed, but gently.
1. By making a practice of asking the class how correct a response is, every student can be learning from a singular error, and the teacher doesn't have to act as the sole "language enforcer".
2. Another good error treatment method for the teacher to clarify the day's mistakes at the end of class. By doing this, no student is singled out and embarrassed, and again, the entire class in learning from the mistakes.

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