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Acting In the ESL Classroom

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A short explanation of why teaching English through drama works and how it works.

A short explanation of why teaching English through drama works and how it works.

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  • Great presentation! Quite convincing with clear arguments.
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  • 1. Acting in the ESL/EFL Classroom: Why It Is Effective by Gary Carkin, Ph.D. 01/08/10
  • 2. Introduction
    • Effectively Using Drama and Role Playing in the Teaching of ESL/EFL
    • General Benefits:
    • Reduces shyness
    • Encourages self-confidence
    • Improves diction
    • Improves voice and “presence”
    • Gets students to “think on their feet” using role play and improvisation
    • Encourages rapid negotiation of meaning
    01/08/10
  • 3. Holographic imaging supports theories of SLA and acting
    • Holographic studies of brain activity during language learning by Dr. Karl Pribram
    • The inter-active psycho linguistic theory of Lev Semenovitch Vygotsky
    • The Stanislavski approach to acting
    01/08/10
  • 4. Language Acquisition = Whole Brain
    • Dr. Karl Pribram:
    • Language acquisition is a whole brain activity
    • The left hemisphere: symbolic communication (words)
    • The right hemisphere: signs and signing (images)
    • Activated through vocal expression and movement
    • Based upon MOMENTARY feeling/emotion depending upon context
    01/08/10
  • 5. Pragmatics of Situation
    • The pragmatics of situation form the basis for communication
    • The repetition of these “procedural pragmatics” = “transformations” of generative grammar (Chomsky) as indicated by Wilkinson (2000) Pribram (1993)
    • Drama provides context of situation for use of grammar
    01/08/10
  • 6. Movement Supports Language Acquisition
    • “ The upper midbrain is made up of motor structures involved in producing the muscular settings necessary to action…Communicative and linguistic acts also depend on these motor structures”. Karl Pribram
    • Movement is a necessary part of language learning.
    01/08/10
  • 7. Emotion Imprints Language
    • “ Emotional reactions as well as language processes are ‘connected with the activity of the deep cerebral tissues – the subcortical nuclei’”. (Deglin, Wilkinson)
    • Drama helps to generate the emotion that supports imprinting of language
    01/08/10
  • 8. How Acting Supports Language Acquisition
    • Vygotsky (Psycholinguist)
    • Stanislavski (Acting theorist)
    • LEV SEMENOVITCH VYGOTSKY:
    • Interactive approach to language acquisition
    • Zone of Proximal Development
    • Mind in Society
    01/08/10
  • 9. Thought and Language
    • A person starts with a MOTIVE to speak. That MOTIVE generates INNER SPEECH/SUBTEXT. The INNER SPEECH/SUBTEXT generates a THOUGHT/IMAGE. The THOUGHT/IMAGE generates FEELING. The FEELING propels the speech.
    01/08/10
  • 10. Motive/Intention
    • “ A specific desire which the character can satisfy through action.” Charles McGaw, Acting Believing
    • Must be determined for every speech of the character.
    01/08/10
  • 11. INNER SPEECH/SUBTEXT
    • The thought hidden behind the line.
    • Provides the sense associated with a word based on the context.
    • The image created through the thought associates with the word to excite feeling which links to the word.
    01/08/10
  • 12. IMAGE
    • The words of the script combine with the thought of the actor/character to provide a series of images that evoke the feelings of the actor as character.
    • INNER MONOLOGUE connects the actor/character’s INNER SPEECH/SUBTEXT with the thought generated by listening to other characters.
    01/08/10
  • 13. A FLOW OF IMAGES
    • When an actor acts, he sees a picture. He keeps the images before him as if they were on a television or a motion picture screen”. Charles McGaw
    • When the language learner listens, he sees a picture that connects to the thoughts and motives of his character. He reacts by using speech and movement to further his objectives as in real life.
    01/08/10
  • 14. Conclusion
    • Drama is effective in language learning because it mimics the real life process of using symbols (words) related to signs (images) processed through action (use of words and movement) in the context of dramatic circumstances that arouse emotions associated with the words and images used in the satisfaction of a motive, need, or desire.
    01/08/10
  • 15. Conclusion and Practice
    • Effective drama as well as language acquisition will adhere to the processes outlined above as suggested by Lev Semenovich Vygotsky and Konstantine Stanislavski. Vygotsky shows us how the language acquisition process occurs, and Stanislavski shows us how it occurs when acting.
    01/08/10
  • 16. A Funny Thing Happened on the Way to the Dorm 01/08/10

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