Chapter 11 - Using coursebooks


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Using coursebooks, How to Teach English, Jeremy Harmer, new edition.

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Chapter 11 - Using coursebooks

  1. 1. Using coursebooks Gladys Altamirano Rebeca Carrera Freddy Cedeño Melida Farinango Maria Gavilanes Cristina Gómez
  2. 2. Using coursebooks
  3. 3. Options for coursebook use  Course books are very important teaching tool that supports teacher to clarify and simplify material and provide needed assistance.  They are organized and carefully planned and provide the students assistance.  The sequential presentation of information in an orderly manner, allows the teacher to present didactic and extra material in a balanced and sequential way and also provides a sequence of teaching procedures, that tells what and when to do it.
  4. 4. Options for coursebook use  On the other hand, it is necessary to provide teachers strategies and extra activities, so that everything is carefully planned for the students in this important process. As a result, we will obtain teachers with a complete and comprehensive program.
  5. 5. Options for coursebook use  There are four alternatives to take in consideration, if we do not agree with a course book:  Firstly, there is no problem if we omit lessons, teachers are evaluating all the time.  Secondly, provide our own material, should be better than exercises from course book and also could be more interesting than exercises provided by mention course book.  Thirdly, teachers could add activities and exercises, in order to have enthusiastic and interested activities, using and revising grammar and vocabulary according the topic they are working on.
  6. 6. Options for coursebook use  The last alternative is for teacher to adapt what is on the course book, rewriting, redoing, reordering, replacing, reduci ng, etc. so students and teacher can feel more comfortable using the course book in adequate way.
  7. 7. Adding, adapting and replacing  Course books are probably the teacher’s and the student’s most valuable resource as they work together through the school curriculum.  Course books are normally quite well organized and help us to progress step by step through everything the curriculum wants us to work on.
  8. 8. Adding, adapting and replacing TO USE THE COURSEBOOKS MORE CREATIVELY ADDING Add some activities that are not in the course book. ADAPTING Adjust the extra activities to be suitable for your lesson and for your students’ needs. REPLACING To use variety of activities, to the lesson class .
  9. 9. Adding, adapting and replacing  Teacher will be able to address your students’ needs in a more accurate, targeted way by having greater control over what materials you use with them and what activities you provide for them in your lessons for achieving a better developing in learning process.
  10. 10. Reason for (and against) coursebook use SOME ADVANTAGES  GOOD course books present:  Well-structured syllabus  Interesting content  Consistent grammar  Appropriate vocabulary and use of language  Excellent reading and listening material
  11. 11. Reason for (and against) coursebook use  Because of the lack of time for teacher to plan, that takes the course book as an ideal option to prepare each class. Besides, there we can find teacher´s guide which is an excellent monitor for every lesson plan.  Students feel comfortable with course books, they can see through the contents and be ready to the next topic.
  12. 12. Reason for (and against) coursebook use  ON THE OTHER HAND  There is the risk that the course book becomes the ONLY material to work with. Both, students and teacher will feel locked in the book suggestions  Each class might develop a course book – centered approach causing lack of creativity.
  13. 13. Reason for (and against) coursebook use  ASPECTS TO TAKE INTO ACCOUNT  The best thing teachers and students should do is taking the course book as a proposal for action without rejecting ideas from other sources.  The course book might work as a primary source accompanied by multiply fonts of information.  The teacher is who decides how and when the material is used and of course it must be employed according to the students´ progress.
  14. 14. Choosing coursebooks  Teachers have to make competent choice what books to employ. To carry out it teacher should determine the pertinent course book analyzing the books under consideration through checklist of questions  Besides, Teacher asks the learners´ point of view to take into account students´ needs and discuss with colleagues which benefit teacher come to a final decision.
  15. 15. Choosing coursebooks  There are possible areas for consideration which are fundamental to take a precise decision such as: Price and availability, Add-ons and extras, Layout and design, Instructions, Methodology, Syllabus, Language skills, Topics, Cultural appropriacy, Teacher’s guide
  16. 16. Choosing coursebooks  So when choosing books, these factors should be taken     into consideration: Analyze it. Check areas like the list in the further chart. Pilot it. Use it in one or two classes and see the results. Consult other teachers. Consider opinion from students.
  17. 17. Choosing coursebooks POSSIBLE AREAS FOR CONSIDERATION Price and availability Add-ons and extras Layout and design Instructions Methodology Syllabus Language skills Topics Cultural appropriacy Teacher’s guide POSSIBLE QUESTIONS FOR COURSEBOOK ANALYSIS Consider the students´ acquisition power Check amount if extra resources in comparison with other books See the structure design and if it is easy to manage Check if language instructions and how independent could be its use. Test the relation between study and activation. Analyze the steps from learning to production Compare the objectives and learning goals with class levels Take a look of how the book covers each language skills Take in consideration attractive issues for your students considering age and social context. Customs, ethnicities, economic context should be taken in consideration which may be engaging at the teaching time. Review the teacher´s guide and how easy to follow is.
  18. 18. Conclusions  In this chapter we have considered an important issue because it is decisive for the teaching-learning process to choose an appropriate course book .  Initially, we have analyzed several options for adding, adapting and replacing and how important is the teacher´s creativeness in selecting these options apart from not to depend on merely the book content but assessing with extra resources for reinforcing lessons.  It is very important to realize that a textbook is an aid, not a sacred text. Teachers should work out the best ways to use their books but they should never let the book use them. Course books must be at the service of teacher and learners, not their masters.
  19. 19. Conclusions  Quite often teachers complain about course books that need supplementing. The truth is: all course books need supplementing. The point is just to decide how much and what kind of supplementing a course book requires, always according to the needs and characteristics of a particular learner or a group of learners.  After that we have consider a range of elements before choosing an appropriate course book.  With these guidelines, we as teachers will get the best of our selected book and students will be comfortable when working with an appropriate material on their hands.