The Creative English Classroom

Duriya Aziz SW

The secret of successful language teaching and learning (particularly in ESL/EFL contexts) does not lie in drilling the rules of grammar into the learners, it lies in empowering learners to be creative by showing them how language works in everyday contexts to make meaning and to get the job done. This can be achieved by exposing learners to a variety of texts with a focus on context, audience, purpose and culture. The text can then be explored to see how textual, grammatical and lexical structures react and interact within the text to create meaning. When implementing this as the pedagogical basis of a curriculum however, careful planning of methodology and outcomes needs to take place, bearing in mind the cognitive and emotional development of the learner as well as his or her interests and abilities.

During the workshop, teachers will explore various methods for implementing a text-based curriculum in the classroom or for incorporating a text-based focus in an already existing curriculum. Participants will develop lesson plans using pre-selected texts and will examine existing materials and lesson plans.

The workshop will be in two parts – brief presentation of theoretical and pedagogical underpinnings and hands on development of lesson plans using the pedagogy and model presented. The following is the proposed plan for the workshop:1. Exploring Texts (Tasks) (Group work) 2. Methodology of a text-based lesson 3. Criteria for selecting texts and designing tasks (Group work) 4. Developing a lesson plan (Group work)