Methods and post methods in EFL: a call for situated methodologies


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This PPT is part of a workshop on unveiling what's behind our teaching practices and a call for working on situated methodologies sustained by theory, practice and reflection.

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  • Pre-task
    The teacher introduces the topic and gives the students clear instructions on what they will have to do at the task stage and might help the students to recall some language that may be useful for the task. The pre-task stage can also often include playing a recording of people doing the task. This gives the students a clear model of what will be expected of them. The students can take notes and spend time preparing for the task.
    The students complete a task in pairs or groups using the language resources that they have as the teacher monitors and offers encouragement.
    Students prepare a short oral or written report to tell the class what happened during their task. They then practice what they are going to say in their groups. Meanwhile the teacher is available for the students to ask for advice to clear up any language questions they may have.
    Students then report back to the class orally or read the written report. The teacher chooses the order of when students will present their reports and may give the students some quick feedback on the content. At this stage the teacher may also play a recording of others doing the same task for the students to compare.
    The teacher then highlights relevant parts from the text of the recording for the students to analyze. They may ask students to notice interesting features within this text. The teacher can also highlight the language that the students used during the report phase for analysis.
    Finally, the teacher selects language areas to practice based upon the needs of the students and what emerged from the task and report phases. The students then do practice activities to increase their confidence and make a note of useful language.
  • Methods and post methods in EFL: a call for situated methodologies

    1. 1. GOING BEYOND METHODS Current perspectives to language teaching December 2013 Workshop facilitator: Mauricio Miraglia twitter @mauromiraglia
    2. 2. QUICK CHECK ON OUR PRACTICES AND PRINCIPLES Discuss with your neighbor to later share with whole group
    3. 3. AN OVERVIEW IN TIME ge gu a y l an a o le nt W ia h Wh Sile ped proac • The gesto ral Ap • Sug Natu thod e • The ct M e • Dir . • Etc • situational methodology (Ur, 2013)
    4. 4. FEATURES OF CLT • • • • • • • • • • meaning is at the heart of teaching / learning conversations are presented in terms of functions a key goal is communication trial and error is part of the learning process reading and writing can be included from early in any course drilling is done as a resource mastery of forms is achieved while negotiating meaning accuracy is evaluated in context group work is a common type of dynamics in the classroom motivation comes from what we are communicating
    5. 5. SELF-ASSESSING YOUR CLT 01. What are the characteristics of the teaching / learning process? 02. What’s the nature of teacher-student and studentstudent interaction? 03. How are students’ feelings and emotions are handled? 04. What’s the role of native language? 05. Which language skills are emphasized? 06. How does the teacher respond to student errors?
    6. 6. TASKS IN THE EFL TEACHING / LEARNING A task is a work-plan that requires learners to process language pragmatically in order to achieve an outcome that can be evaluated in terms of whether the correct or appropriate propositional content has been conveyed. To this end, it requires them to give primary attention to meaning and to make use of their own linguistic resources, although the design of the task may predispose them to choose particular forms. A task is intended to result in language use that bears a resemblance, direct or indirect, to the way language is used in the real world. Like other language activities, a task can engage productive or receptive, and oral or written skills, and also various cognitive processes. (Ellis, 2003) In a task-based lesson the teacher doesn't predetermine what language will be studied, the lesson is based around the completion of a central task and the language studied is determined by what happens as the students complete it.
    8. 8. HIDE AND SEEK • Discuss with your neighbor the best place in the room in the picture to hide something small (e.g. a set of keys). Decide together exactly where you would put it/them.     1 minute • Change partners. See how quickly you can guess what place they have decided on. Ask them questions – but they can only answer yes or no.  (Count the questions.) Example by Wills, Jane 2007
    9. 9. HOW “CLOSED” WAS THIS TASK? • Precise goals, predetermined outcome? • Strategies set? • Vocabulary items predictable? • Whole phrases predictable? • Grammar predictable? • Interpersonal talk & task-oriented language?     (What would you predict?)
    10. 10. FROM CLOSED TO OPEN TASKS • closed: a very specific outcome,  one pre-determined solution; clearly defined parameters; predictable language • open:  learners are free to decide on their own solution(s) and ways of achieving them.  Less predictable / unpredictable language Wills 2007
    11. 11. TASKS PRIORITIZING VERB TENSES • Present Simple - plan and carry out a survey to find out what people generally do after class / in the evenings / Sunday mornings…     Collate and report results. - List 5 things your family does before leaving home to go on holiday.  Compare lists. How many things in common? • Past simple -  A busy day: find who had the busiest day.   - Tell an anecdote e.g. my most embarrassing experience. • Second conditionals - learners do a personality quiz, then write their own in pairs: e.g. How courageous are you? What would you do if …  an alien space ship landed in your garden? A. I would hide under my bed. B. …. (Hint: start by brain-storming scary scenarios) . Exchange quizzes. Source: Lamprini Loumpourdi (2005) pp33-39) from
    12. 12. SELF-ASSESSING YOUR TBLT • Would the activity engage learners’ interest? • Is there a primary focus on meaning? (Are learners free to use whatever language forms they choose to?) • Does it have a clear outcome for learners to achieve? (Is completion a priority?) • Is success judged in terms of outcome rather than accuracy of language? • Does it relate to real world activities?   The more confidently you can answer YES to these questions, the more task-like the activity. (Wills, 2007)
    13. 13. OTHER POSIBLE MODELS Webquests The flipped classroom • Introduction • Task • Let’s begin • Think • Process • Resources • Dig Deeper • Discuss • Evaluation • Conclusion • Finally Key Concepts: Teamwork | Inductive teaching |Exploration| Emphasis on real world tasks | language is taught “just-in-time” | Autonomous learners | Teachers as facilitators
    14. 14. FINALLY: SITUATED METHODOLOGIES “situated methodology (is) largely grounded in general pedagogical principles and practice, shared by teachers of a variety of different subjects, in contrast with ELT methods, which tend to focus predominantly on issues related specifically to language teaching” (Ur, 2013) Key question: How are my/our students likely to learn best?
    15. 15. SUGGESTED TASKS • Discuss and agree (70%) on what students need to lean; • Agree on a peer observation plan (Yürekli, 2013); • Collect videos of your lessons or written peer observation; • Watch / read and analyze your practices 1:1 and later in a larger group; • Do not jugde them from your own common sense, instead, try to categorize them according to methods (beliefs, theory, principles behind the actions performed by the teacher); • Assess which practices evidence better learning for your students; • Bring to the surface the principles behind better practices; • Reflect on best teaching practice and learning experience; • Write an agreed document with your new predicaments and practices; • Start again until you can come up with your own methodologies for teaching & learning. • Share & discuss your document with stakeholders, students and incoming teachers. • Be ready to start again as context changes.
    16. 16. SOURCES • Brown, D. (2007) Teaching by Principles: an interactive approach to language pedagogy, Third Edition. White Plains, NY: Pearson Education. • Frost, R. (2004). A task-based approach. Retrieved from • Kumaravadivelu, B. (2006) Tesol Methods: Changing Tracks, Challenging Trends. Tesol Quarterly, vol. 40 (1), 59-77. • Ur, P. (2013). Language-teaching method revisited. ELT Journal, 67(4), 468-474. Retrieved from • Yürekli, A. (2013). The six-category intervention analysis: a classroom observation reference. ELT Journal,67(3), 302-312. Retrieved from