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Teaching intermediate learners
 

Teaching intermediate learners

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    Teaching intermediate learners Teaching intermediate learners Presentation Transcript

    • Teaching Intermediate Learners Julio Vangel P.
    • Intermediate students
      • The American Council on the Teaching of Foreign languages (1986) gives us a guideline of where intermediate students might be expected to do in speaking:
      • Able to handle successfully a variety of uncomplicated, basic communicative tasks and social situations.
      • Can talk simply about oneself and family members
      • Can ask and answer questions and participate in simple conversations on topics beyond the most immediate needs, e.g., personal history and leisure time activities. Pronunciation may continue to be strongly influenced by first language and fluency may still be strained.
      • Although misunderstandings still arise, speakers can generally be understood by sympathetic interlocutors.
    • Intermediate students
      • At the end of the intermediate level course students should possess the ability to:
      • Understand and speak English with confidence.
      • Have enough vocabulary to talk and read about a wide number of subjects.
      • Can assess and consciously improve his pronunciation.
      • Has studied all the main tenses and can cofidently make sentences and question forms in all of them.
    • Intermediate Syllabus
      • At an intermediate level students consolidate their acquired grammar. They begin to extend their domain into more complex tense forms, such as the present perfect, as well as items that enable them to begin to express abstract rather than concrete meanings.
    • Activity
      • You will take an intermediate course book and look at the syllabus comparing it with your copies of intermediate level learner syllabus by David Nunan (2005). Make a list of the grammar items/structures that are most common to you.
      • What are the five most repeated grammar items?
      • With a partner, compare the books. Are the grammar items/structures matched with similar or different functions?
    • Pre-intermediate syllabus Grammar Structure/form Meaning Function Sample Simple Present & Present Continuous Verb+ s/es in third person. am/is/are +verb+ing Simple present expresses facts or usual actions. Present continuous expresses things happening now, at this moment. Stating preferences. Talk about activities and facts. Karina usually sits at the front of the class. Today she is sitting at the back. Simple Past & Past Continuous Verb+ed or irregular verbs. Was/were+verb+ing. The past simple talks about a finished action in the past. The past continuous describes an action in progress at a specific moment in the past. Retelling past events. Telling stories happening at specific times in the past. When I took the photo, they were writing a song. I was sitting on the sofa when I saw the news on TV. Will/ Won’t & Going to Be+going to+base form(verb) Will, won’t +base form. (Predictions, promises, offers and decisions). Use going to talk about future plans. Use will & won’t to make decisions, offering and promising. Making Predictions, offers and decisions. He isn’t going to like the weather here. We’ll take the 6:30 train. I’ll open the door for you. I won’t tell anyone. Comparatives & Superlatives (Short)adjective+er/est than. (Long)adjective more/most+adjective+than Comparatives compare people and things. Superlatives adjectives say which is the biggest in a group. Comparing things, places and People. My sister is shorter than John. John Isn’t as tall as my brother. He’s the tallest person I’ve ever seen.
    • Intermediate syllabus
      • Below you can see 10 of the most common topics seen by Intermediates and upper-intermediates:
      • The Present Perfect
      • Relative Clauses
      • Conditional Clauses
      • Gerunds and Infinitives
      • Modals
      • Tag Questions
      • Indirect Questions
      • Passive
      • Reported Speech
      • Past Perfect
    • Intermediate syllabus Grammar Structure/form Meaning Function Sample Present Perfect Have/Has+ verb (past participle. He has been to Paris. (He’s been to Paris) Have you ever been to Mexico? Relative Clauses Relative clauses tell us what a place, person or thing does. Identifying People. Describing Places and things. Conditional Clauses (If+ present,) [will+base form ]-First Conditional. (If+past,) [would+base form] -Second Conditional. Use the first conditional to talk about an improbable future situation and its consequence. Second conditional talks about improbable/Impossible situations. Gerunds & Infinitives Verb + ing. To+ base form (verb) Express Purpose. Give definitions.
    • Intermediate and upper-intermediate syllabus Grammar Structure/form Meaning Function Sample Modals Talk about possibilities. Make recommendations. I may go to the party. I might not go to the party. I think you should hire him. Affirmative Statement+negative question with auxiliary. Negative statement+ affirmative question with auxiliary. She doesn’t like it here, does she? You can sing, can’t you? Indirect Questions Auxiliary verb/modal verb + Subject + verb. Indirect questions are polite, longer forms of normal questions. Showing interest in specific objects or actions. These classrooms are cleaned every evening. They weren’t build by the Greeks.
    • Intermediate and upper-intermediate syllabus Grammar Structure/form Meaning Function Sample Had/Hadn’t+ past participle * The past Perfect is the same for all persons. Use the past perfect when you are already talking about the past, and want to talk about an earlier past action. Relating past events to other past events. Reported Speech Tense Change: Present-Past Can-Could Will-Would Present Perfect-Past Perfect Etc. Reporting what someone said.
    • Intermediate syllabus Grammar Structure/form Meaning Function Sample Present Perfect Have/Has+ verb (past participle. Present Perfect is used to talk about past experiences when you don’t say exactly when they happened. Talk about experiences. Starting Conversations. He has been to Paris. (He’s been to Paris) Have you ever been to Mexico? Relative Clauses who/that/where/when & which. Relative clauses tell us what a place, person or thing does. Identifying People. Describing Places and things. A cook is a person who works in a restaurant. A clock is a thing that tells the time. Conditional Clauses (If+ present,) [will+base form ]-First Conditional. (If+past,) [would+base form] -Second Conditional. Use the first conditional to talk about an improbable future situation and its consequence. Second conditional talks about improbable/Impossible situations. Making Hypothesis. If I have time tomorrow, I’ll help you. If a bear attacked me, I would run away. Gerunds & Infinitives Verb + ing. To+ base form (verb) Infinitive says why you do something. Use the gerund as the subject of a sentence, after some verbs and prepositions. Express Purpose. Give definitions. I need to clean my room, it’s too dirty. It’s important not to be late. Smoking is a bad habit.
    • Intermediate and upper-intermediate syllabus Grammar Structure/form Meaning Function Sample Modals May/Might+ base form (possibility) Should/ Shouldn’t + base form (advice) May and Might talk about a future possibility. Should and Shouldn’t are used to give advice or say what you think is right to do. Talk about possibilities. Make recommendations. I may go to the party. I might not go to the party. I think you should hire him. Tag Questions Affirmative Statement+negative question with auxiliary. Negative statement+ affirmative question with auxiliary. Tag questions are used to verify or check information that we think is true or to check information that we aren't sure is true.  Checking and confirming facts and opinions. She doesn’t like it here, does she? You can sing, can’t you? Indirect Questions Auxiliary verb/modal verb + Subject + verb. Indirect questions are polite, longer forms of normal questions. Asking Politely. Where is the department store?- Could you tell me where the department store is? Would you tell me the purpose of your visit? Passive Be (Present/Past) + past participle. The passive is used when it’s not known or not important who does or did the action Showing interest in specific objects or actions. These classrooms are cleaned every evening. They weren’t build by the Greeks.
    • Intermediate and upper-intermediate syllabus Grammar Structure/form Meaning Function Sample Past Perfect Had/Hadn’t+ past participle * The past Perfect is the same for all persons. Use the past perfect when you are already talking about the past, and want to talk about an earlier past action. Relating past events to other past events. Suddenly he remembered that he had seen the movie before. I arrived at the coffee shop twenty minutes late. Reported Speech Tense Change: Present-Past Can-Could Will-Would Present Perfect-Past Perfect Etc. Reported speech is used to say what another person said. Besides the tenses, pronouns also suffer a change Reporting what someone said. I want to see you again. He told her (that) he wanted to see her again. I’ve been at work since 8:00. She said (that) he had been at work since 8:00.
    • 3.2 Principles for teaching grammar to intermediate learners
      • Pennington (1995) suggests that the following principles will enhance learner motivation and the effectiveness of learning:
      • Attend to communicate need and purpose.
      • Place grammatical structures in real or realistic contexts.
      • Make creative use of various sorts of everyday objects, visuals and special purpose graphics.
      • Incorporate humor or other highly motivating content.
      • Provide challenge and interest through game-like features.
      • Promote choice, independence, creativity, realism and feedback through pair and small group work.
      • In the following slides we will focus on principles that are adequate for intermediate learners such as, starting to move students from reproductive to creative language use and personalizing the grammar activities and exercises whenever possible.
    • 3.2 Principles for teaching grammar to intermediate learners
      • 1. Begin to move learners along the continuum from reproductive to creative language use.
      • An example of reproductive language use means to mimic language models provided by a textbook, audio/video source or by the teacher. Other examples of these are, drills, word and sentence sequencing, matching exercises listen and repeat and so on.
      • Creative language use means providing more “space” for the learners to use language a little more flexibly than reproductive language tasks, while at the same time generating one or more target language items. The item invites students to use their imaginations. They can come up with a range of different answers that follow the required model.
    • 3.2 Principles for teaching grammar to intermediate learners
      • 2. Where possible, personalize the content of the practice activities.
      • Task involving personalization encourage the learners to bring in their own ideas, feelings, attitudes and opinions.
      • Very few items of grammar are not amenable to personalization.
      • Personalization can work wonderfully for intermediate level students who have sufficient language by this stage to enable the the teacher to exploit the principle.
      • Many grammar tasks can be personalized if they don’t already involve a degree of personalization.
      • Example 2, Grammar Dimensions 3 (Thewlis, 2000, p.107)
    • 3.3 Tasks and Materials
      • In this unit we will describe a range of tasks and exercises that can be used with intermediate learners. The aim naturally, is provide you with a handful of tasks and exercise types that can be used as models for you to develop your own materials. The following exercise types are described and exemplified:
      • Information gaps.
      • Problem-solving.
      • Grammar dictation.
      • Role-plays.
      • Consciousness-raising.
    • 3.3 Tasks and Materials
      • 1. Information gaps
      • Information gaps, as we say with the beginners are a great way to give learners practice with a particular structure with a meaningful context. Because each learner in an information gap task has access to different information, and because all of the information is required in order to complete the task or solve the problems, learners are forced, by the very nature of the task to persist in their efforts to achieve mutual understanding through negotiating meaning.
    • 3.3 Tasks and Materials
      • 2. Problem-solving
      • Similar to information gap tasks, problem-solving requires learners to work together in pairs and groups. However, in this case all students have access to the same information. Through collaborative discussion, argument, reasoning and providing their own point of view, students have to solve a problem, come to a conclusion and reach an agreement.
      • Example 7 , Practical English Language Teaching Grammar (Nunan, 2005, p.94)
    • 3.3 Tasks and Materials
      • 3. Grammar Dictation
      • An alternative to Dictogloss can be to dictate a text with a few grammar items to intermediate students, the twist would then be that the teacher reads the texts at a normal reading speed. Once they know the main idea of the text read, the students get into groups of 3 and the teacher reads the text at a normal speed one more time. The students have to join what they heard in order to complete the text accurately.
    • 3.3 Tasks and Materials
      • 4. Role-plays
      • Role plays work well in language learning, because they are good for personalizing and for encouraging creative language use. Ladousse explains role-plays:
      • “ A group of students carrying out a role-play in a classroom has much in common with a group of children playing school, doctors and nurses. Both are unselfconsciously creating their own reality and, by doing so, are experimenting with their knowledge of the real world and developing their ability to interact with other people.” (Ladousse, 1987, p.5).
      • Example 10, Conversation (Nolasco and Arthur, 1992 pp. 109-110)
    • 3.3 Tasks and Materials
      • 5. Consciousness-raising tasks
      • These tasks involve learners to solve grammatical problems or puzzles in small groups. In doing so, they are communicating naturally in English. Fotos (1995) argues that the most communication is produced among students when the tasks have four components:
      • They contain an information gap.
      • Students are given time to plan what they are going to say.
      • The tasks require a solution.
      • All students must reach agreement on the solution.
      • Example 11, New Ways in Teaching Grammar (Fotos, 1995 pp. 181-182)