Can we learn a second language like we learned our first?

Comprehensible Input, Issues in ELT, Learning languages, Methodology, Polyglots, Second Language Acquisition, Stephen Krashen, Teacher training, Uncategorized

Can we learn a second language like we learned our first?
Why do children seem to have such an easy time picking up their native tongue while we adults tend to struggle for years with a second language and never make it much beyond intermediate level? Can we acquire a language in the same way as kids do their first? Read my article on British Council Voices Magazine exploring some of the ideas of Steven Krashen & their classroom implications.

https://www.britishcouncil.org/voices-magazine/can-we-learn-second-language-we-learned-our-first

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Teaching writing

Methodology
Photo by Fredrick Rubensson under Creative Commons from: http://bit.ly/1O300JB

Photo by Fredrick Rubensson under Creative Commons from: http://bit.ly/1O300JB

In this episode we look at different methods and ideas for teaching writing. We discuss the pros and cons of the two main approaches, that is product and process approach. We also look at the importance of writing and ways of encouraging our students to write more. We mainly focus on academic writing, but also discuss issues relevant to teaching writing in a general English class.

We’d love to hear from you. How do you teach writing? Do you have a favourite approach? Any tried and tested activities? Leave us a comment below the post.

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Krashen’s theories of language acquisition- do they still have value in the ELT classroom?

Comprehensible Input, Issues in ELT, Methodology, Second Language Acquisition, Stephen Krashen, Teacher training

Robert William McCaul and Marek Kiczkowiak debate the merits of Krashen’s theories on second language acquisition. Can second languages be learned in the same way in which young children pick up their first language? What implications does this have for the ELT classroom? How much formal grammar should we teach learners? An old debate but an important one…

The Affective Filter

(Dr. M Bilash) The Affective Filter: what holds many potentially successful language learners back- anxiety.

What do you think of Krashen’s theories? Let us know in the comments section below.

Don’t forget that the podcast is also available on a number of music services. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

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What evidence is there to support the different ELT methods and approaches? with Russell Mayne

Methodology
Photo by Mythpunk under Creative Commons from: https://flic.kr/p/9VDJcK

Photo by Mythpunk under Creative Commons from: https://flic.kr/p/9VDJcK

In one of our previous podcasts: ‘ELT methods and approaches: the emperor’s new clothes?’, which you can listen to here, we explored the question of whether there was any scientific evidence behind the most common methods to teaching English. The episode was so popular that we decided to invite Russell Mayne to do a follow-up one. Russ is well-known for his blog ‘Evidence based EFL’, where he debunks the most common myths concerning ELT and SLA, so we thought he’d be the perfect guest to tell us if and what evidence there is to support the most common ELT methods and approaches.

What do you think? Which methods do you normally use in class? Is there one best method or does its effectiveness depend on the socio-cultural context? Leave us a comment below.

russ mayne

Russell Mayne has taught English for over 15 years, in Japan, Taiwan and the UK and is interested in evidence-based teaching. He is currently teaching EAP in the English language teaching Unit at the University of Leicester. He blogs about Evidence based EFL here. You can also find him on Twitter @ebefl

Don’t forget that the podcast is also available on a number of music services. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

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ELT Methods and Approaches – the emperor’s new clothes

Methodology
Vilhelm Pedersen's illustration to Kejserens nye klæder. From Wikimedia Commons.

Vilhelm Pedersen’s illustration to Kejserens nye klæder. From Wikimedia Commons.

In this podcast we discuss different approaches to teaching English, such as the Audiolingual Method, Dogme, Lexical Approach, PPP and TBL. We also look at whether there is any evidence to support the efficiency of these methods, and argue that perhaps their rise to fame and subsequent demise have much more to do with the changing fashion than we’d like to admit.

What do you think? Do the ELT methods have any clothes on? Leave us a comment below.

Don’t forget that the podcast is also available on a number of music services. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it or left a comment.

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Classroom practices: too much or not enough?

Methodology

Even experienced teachers can become prisoners of their own teaching habits and beliefs, overusing certain approaches, while completely overlooking others. As a result, in this podcast we talk about things that in our opinion we as teachers should do less often in an EFL classroom, and some things that we think we don’t do enough of and should do much more often. Among other things we look at: grammar based vs lexical syllabus, teaching individual words vs teaching chunks, responding to students needs vs following the syllabus, teacher talking time.

Don’t forget that it’s also available on a number of music services. Just click on one of the logos below to be redirected the service. If you enjoyed one of the episodes, we would appreciate if you rated it on one of the services or left a comment. Looking forward to your comments and suggestions.

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