Relation between Language learning and Interactive Activities
- english as as second language, english language lab, English language teacher, language learning, language learning skills
Language learning and interaction are strongly linked with each other. Of the four language learning skills, listening and speaking are perhaps the most important if proficiency in communicative skills in a particular language has to be achieved. This is why interactive sessions using role play or group discussion is highly recommended as a language teaching strategy.
Teaching of English as a Second Language (ESL) is positively impacted when the teaching-learning experience is affected by communicative sessions in class. When learners speak English in a controlled, yet open environment, it influences their fluency and accuracy in the language. This in turn lets learners gain confidence in using the language in out-of-classroom scenarios.
More often than not, English language teachers feel that the effort that goes into teaching English does not have a corresponding reflection in the communication skills of the learners. With the learning of any language being measured in terms of the proficiency level of the communicative skills of the learners, the frustration of the teachers is thus justified. On the other hand, the reality also is that, the actual time spent in speaking or listening activities in real classroom scenarios is far from being sufficient. The focus on reading, writing, and on rote learning inhibits language in use and truncates creativity of the learner. The learners are not likely to become proficient in communicating in English under such conditions.
The onus thus lies on the teacher to create an interactive environment in class and ensure oral and aural participation of the learners. This is expected to trigger the use of English language in class. While doing so, it helps if the topics identified are meaningful for the learners. The learners are then able to see the relevance of these themes or topics in their day-to-day lives. The introduction of vocabulary and expressions suitable to such topics if made at this stage can be put to use and practised. The learners then feel empowered and confident about their ability to use the language.
It has been seen that, the same objective can be achieved by using English language labs; of course the said lab should provide content for interactive sessions involving the learners and the English language teacher. Where on one hand the importance of a language teacher cannot be denied, on the other hand, the value that a standardised language lab software adds to language learning has to be appreciated. Using blended methodology, the benefits of the expertise's of the teacher and technology can be optimally accrued.
Words Worth English Language Lab is one such software that uses blended methodology. Day-to-day scenarios identified by CEFR form part of the software. They are used to create interactive sessions in the class, ensuring access to standardised teaching-learning content and experience. The involvement of the teacher during the interactive session accelerates the language acquisition process. The human touch that the teacher brings into the class facilitates the process further. Many a school and learners have benefited in improving their English communicative skills using this software.