Talking Point (Blog)
Teaching English as a living communication means – a must!
As the new Thai 2013-14 academic year starts, it is a timely occasion to reflect on how the English language should be taught at school level, so that students can become adept at the world’s largest second language and remember what they have been taught in this subject. Even more reason for students to become proficient in English, is that the Asean Economic Community (AEC) becomes a reality in 2015 and the common language used by people of the ten member states of Asean will be English.
Up until now, the instruction of English in schools has tended to focus on teaching the grammar of the language and to prepare students for regular written tests, with the upshot that students do not learn how to converse in English effectively and also eventually forget the grammatical structures and rules.
It has to be emphatically stated that a language is a living means of communication that is used by the human race to interact with each other across all the contexts that occur in a lifetime. A language is the medium by which humans give information and express their personal opinions and feelings.
Accordingly, English lessons in the school place should concentrate on ensuring that students can speak about, and understand when another person is speaking, the daily matters that make up and affect their own life. We are provided with a rich and colourful tapestry of topics to talk about, and the teacher’s objective is to bring into the classrooms talking points that have an immediate and direct interest factor with the students, for example entertainment, food, clothes and sports.
Further ways to make these conversation lessons more effective include the use of contemporary technology, bringing into the classroom real life examples of what is being discussed and active participation by the students in place of passive listening and reading.
If there are sufficient English lessons in a week, there is a case for suggesting that an extension of the subject matter could include the basics of applied mathematics and science in English language. Let us not forget that students in Singapore and the Philippines, where the standard of English is comparatively high, learn most, if not all, of their school subjects in English starting from their early years of school.
This is the same way that English Click approaches the delivery of our conversation lessons. We provide a wide range of courses to prathom amd mathayom school students, university students and adults that are simultaneously instructive, relevant and enjoyable. We invite you to participate with us in further tuition for your son or daughter, and thereby improve their future prospects within the Asean Community.
English language vocabulary
reflect (verb): think
adept at (adjective): skillful in
proficient: knowledgeable, expert
upshot (noun): result
eventually (adverb): in the end
emphatically (adverb): with stress
contexts (noun): situations
opinions (noun): thoughts, views
tapestry (noun): decorated wall carpet
contemporary (adjective): up-to date, modern
passive (adjective): not active
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