The Stimulus to Students’ Interest in English Learning
With the development of society and the educational reform, people’s consciousness and concept have had great changes. As everyone knows, English is a language which is different from our native tongue. Language is usually used as a tool for people to communicate with each other and exchange ideas and information in their work and daily life, so people are eager to use a lot of methods to learn it well. English is widely used in the world, and people are aware of the importance and necessity in English learning. It is true that interest is a positive factor in English learning. All teachers should attach the great importance to the students' interest in the whole process of English learning and teaching.
As the old saying goes that interest is the best teacher. It is quite certain that the students' initiative is difficult to spur without interest. So in the article?the paper starts with the discussion of
students' interest, then makes a deep analysis, and also puts forward a series of helpful measures to promote the students' initiative, and further cultivate and stimulate the students' interest in English learning.
English learning; students; interest; stimulation
Our country’s reform and the opening up to the outside world make the education in our country develop continuously. Education is a matter of fundamental importance that is concerned with the country's development and the progress of human beings. As everyone knows, English is a language which is different from our native tongue.
English is widely used in the world, and people are aware of the importance and necessity in English learning.
With the rapid development and reform of the education in our country, people begin to know that the educational quality of schools depends on the quality of teachers. Harmer (2005) defines "the teacher’s role as a controller, assessor, organizer, prompter, participant and resource-provider". Besides, according to FuDaochun’s opinion (2005), the teacher’s role is not static. The teacher’s thinking should change
with the development of society. "Teachers are considered as facilitators, guides, and researchers and so on". Interest is the internal power to spur students’ learning. Teachers should according to the different time, different places and different persons find out more useful teaching methods that can spur students’ interest, enhance the teaching effect in English classroom and increase the students’ motivation in English learning.
It is natural that interest is the positive factor of learning English. Teachers should pay more attention to the whole English teaching and learning. Interest is also the active power of English learning, and runs through the whole learning process. So in the school education, teachers
should also pay more attention to the English
practice and maintaining the students’ interest in English learning. It is clear that interest can decide the success of the whole English teaching and learning. In the teaching and learning process, teachers should renew the teaching concept and change their teaching methods, and use the scientific, creative and constructive teaching methods to build and maintain the students’ interest. Teachers should make students gain lots of knowledge and happiness from their studies. It’s necessary that
teachers should keep their students active and creative in English learning.
As the saying goes that interest is the best teacher and it is quite true that the students’ initiative in learning is difficult to spur without interest. All the teachers should try their best to arouse their students' interest in English learning in order to help students learn English well in the shortest possible time.
I. The Importance of English Learning
As we know, English is a language different from our native tongue. However, people learn languages in different ways for different reasons, and have different understandings about the language learning .For Chinese students, they have not enough exposure to good circumstances of English learning and will face various problems in learning English. English is a very useful foreign language and is a widely-spoken language in the world. Now people are aware of its importance and the necessity of learning it. However, for students, there is still a long way to go to keep them interested in English learning. Language is a tool for people to communicate with each other or change their ideas and information. In the whole process, students are the main body in the course of English teaching and learning. So the teacher should guide his students to appreciate and discover the beauty of English language, practice the language skills, express their ideas freely, and exchange information. The most important point is to communicate with others and understand cultures and customs of foreign countries. On the
other hand, as students, they should pay more attention to cultivating their interest in English learning, have correct attitudes, set clear goals and have right ways of learning English.
English has its own features, and the teacher should make full use of the features to attract the students' attention and interest. Students should try their best to have themselves built their interest. Teachers and students should raise their consciousness of English learning. In many foreign countries, English is used as a basic and important language to learn, and people in many parts of the world learn it very hard, and use the language for communication with other persons for different purposes. Students should realize that English learning can improve their abilities to express themselves, and expand their knowledge greatly. Using English as a useful tool, they can enter into the wide society and communicate with other people in the word. After they know the importance of English learning, they certainly learn it hard and their interest can be aroused greatly in English learning.
?. Interest in English Learning
Interest is a kind of positive factor in English learning, and has the function that teachers and students cannot underestimate in the English teaching and learning. It is important for the teacher to give great attention to the development of the students' interest, and of course, this is the key to success of English learning. As everyone knows, interest is the best teacher in English learning. From the psychological point of view, interest is an active factor for mankind to explore things and perform certain activities, and has a tendency to concentrate one's efforts on learning. Interest also plays a leading role in English learning. The interest of learning is an important integrant in the course of teaching and learning, and it is the most active and realistic factor of initiative and enthusiasm. Only those who have strong interest in English learning can do well and get the best results, and they can bring all their faculties into full play in learning. As every road leads to Roman, interest can lead one to any place where he wants to go as farther as he can. At last he will be able to make much progress and win great success in English learning.
With the reform of education, people begin to know that the quality of
schools depends on the quality of teachers. It is clear that the students’ interest of learning directly affects the learning quality. A lot of practice shows that the more interest students have, thmore actively they will participate in the course of English learning. The interest of learning, in turn, will promote learning results. Only under the guidance of great efforts together with the strong interest can teachers help students learn English well and enjoy the happiness of English learning. Besides, interest is the active power of English learning, and runs through the whole learning process. So in the school education, teachers should pay more attention to train and maintain the students' interest of English learning. Interest is also the internal power for spurring students' enthusiasm; therefore, teachers should use various methods according to the different time, different places and different persons to stimulate students’ interest, enhance the teaching effect in English classroom and improve the students’ ability to learn English.
?. Students and Teachers’ Roles in English Learning and Teaching
A. Students' Main Role
In the past school education, students were passive in the process of English teaching and learning. But now, the student is the subject in the course of teaching and learning, and the student is the most active component of the school instruction. However, there are many problems .Because of some reasons, at the beginning maybe students seem uninterested in English learning, but for some time they are even tired of learning.
In English learning and teaching, why are quite a few of students uninterested in English learning? And all the reasons lie in the passive mentality. Students usually don't enjoy obtaining knowledge of their own accord. Students have their own physical and psychological features. They have a strong sense of curiosity and interest of learning; but their high enthusiasm cannot stand long. They are active and lively, but they are weak in control. They are good at imitation and have good memory, but their attention is likely to be attracted by other things and cannot keep long. They want to show themselves and have strong self-esteem, and of course, they hope to be praised by teachers and be appreciated by their classmates.
On the contrary, if students lose their interest, they are forced to do all these things they don't want to. They think that everything they do is done just for others, such as for their parents and teachers. In this way, they gradually form a kind of passive mentality that they themselves are not aware of. Then naturally a lot of complaint will come and they are dissatisfied with anything. Once the resentment gives rise to their minds, they can hardly get anything from learning. They refuse to study and are not willing to do anything that the teacher asks them. For another reason, they do not have chances to show themselves. Teachers should love them, and respect their rights. Because they do not experience the happiness of success, they lack the positive mentality in study. A famous psychologist once said: small success can give one a sense of success, which will help him a lot.
After a period of time in English learning, some students are not interested enough in English gradually, and at last they have not any interest at all. Why? They have a strong sense of curiosity and interest in English at the initial stage of learning. As the contents of English learning are getting more and more difficult, they gradually feel that it is impossible to catch up with the progress they are expected to. There are some reasons for both teachers and students. For students, the following should be paid more attention to: first, realizing the importance of English learning; second, knowing the goal of learning this subject; third, having the correct attitude and a better understanding of English; fourth, cultivating good habits of English learning; and finally, having more appropriate methods for learning.
The most important thing is that teachers should help students maintain and build interest before starting to learn English. It is necessary let all the students be aware of the importance and necessity of learning English. This is an important step in English learning. Here the object of learning must be mentioned. Because some students are not clear of the goal of learning English, they learn just for the sake of learning. Some students think they learn it just for their parents and teachers. They even think that they study and do exercises just because their parents and teachers want them to do so. And they should get high scores in order that their teachers and parents could consider them to be top students. The above-mentioned situation is the passive mentality in English learning. Of course, they do not share the happiness in learning English
As everybody knows, habits are also very important. The proverb says the habit is the second nature. A good habit is hard to obtain and easy to lose, but a bad habit is easy to get and it is hard to get rid of. In English learning, students should have good habits. They do not put off what can be done today till tomorrow. They should be careful to do their homework and listen attentively and be active in class. However, some students do not have good habits. They don’t want to take time to preview their lessons before class and review them after class. They don’t listen to the teacher's lessons carefully in class, and they do not have good habits of taking notes in class. Teachers should let students know that once the habit is formed, and soon it will be very helpful and useful to students. Besides, as the saying goes, without a correct and proper method, even a scholar with bright thoughts may explore blindly. In fact in learning, some students are really very diligent, but the result of learning is so depressing and frustrating. What is the problem? Perhaps they should focus more attention on their right ways of learning. Some students simply do not understand the importance of good and proper methods, and they should do their best to find more useful methods in English learning.
The attitude in English learning is very important, and everything successful depends on the correct attitude. First of all, students should take their right attitude in English learning, and then try their best to study well. For students, it is important for them to experience the sense of success, have good moods, and confidence in learning is also of great importance. It is necessary for students to have confidence and cultivate good habits in English learning.
B. Teacher's Guiding Role
Nowadays, the roles between teachers and students have changed greatly. The teacher plays a very important role in the course of teaching and learning. Teachers’ roles are not static, and their roles change with the development of society. Teachers have many things to do for their students. To be a good teacher, one should pay attention to protecting students’ interest in learning English. Not only should teachers arouse students’ interest, but also they must make every effort to stimulate students’ interest in learning. However, teachers have some problems in
this aspect, and they are influenced by the traditional teaching methods. They are sometimes accustomed to following old teaching modes to give their lessons. At the same time, teachers should manage to find out more ways to spur students’ interest in English learning both in and out of class.
1. Cultivating Students' Correct Ideas in English Learning
First, the teacher should always love and respect students. This is the
The feeling basis of good relationship between teachers and students.
of love for students is important and necessary for teachers, and all teachers should let students know that their teachers really love them. Some famous person once said, gifts of people are like sparks, and they can put out, at the same time, they can burn up. So encouragement can kindle students to make better achievements. Teachers need to help students to find proper ways to learn English well and create a favorable atmosphere for learning.
It's very important that teachers’ feelings of love and understandings will encourage students to study hard and make progress. This is also the teachers' responsibility and duty. In addition, once students feel the true love of teachers, they, in turn, will love and respect their teachers as well. So teachers’ behaviors have a lasting and long influence in students’ minds. With regard to this, it is important and necessary for
teachers to set their good examples for students. As the proverb says: Love me, love my dog. To some degree, the teachers' love will be transferred to the students' love of English learning.
The teacher should know the importance of encouragement, and encouragement can make students more active, and do better in teaching activities. Encouragement may also build their confidence in learning. It seems that most of students dislike improper remarks and criticisms. Their parents and teachers are sometimes telling their students not to do this or that. It seems to students that there are so many don’ts that they are not allowed to do, and they are often told what is right and what is wrong. So their confidence is hurt and their activities are usually limited. Students do not want to be tagged as stupid, a failure, and they always hope that their teachers should understand them and encourage them even if they are doing something wrong. Furthermore, encouragement will ease the pressure of the class atmosphere. Even if
students make some mistakes, the teacher should encourage and help them to build their confidence.
2. More Care, Concern and Courage
It is natural that everything successful depends on one's own attitude and determination. It's true that practice does make perfect. As teachers, some necessary requirements are needed. First, they should have a wide range of the profound professional knowledge. Second, in teaching, they should have a sense of humor, because humor can make the classroom atmosphere go smoothly and actively, and usually students like humorous teachers and most students are more likely to be attracted by this kind of charisma. Third, they should create relaxing atmospheres and help build a good relationship between teachers and students. Fourth, teachers should have the strong sense of duty, and they can not only impart knowledge, but also stimulate the students' interest and motivation in learning. Teachers are like guides to lead students to exploring and discovering some unknown fields.
The classroom teaching is not enough for students, and more practice is needed both in and out of class in English learning. English has its special characteristics, and teachers should make the fullest use of the features to arouse the students’ interest and motivation. In English learning, it is important and necessary for students to practice and use the knowledge and skills. Teachers should offer more chances to practice speaking, listening, reading writing and translating, such activities as English speaking contests, English debates, English dialogues, English word twisters and English parties and English songs. These activities can give students more chances to practice, to express themselves and exchange ideas and information in English. Through these activities, students can build their confidence, enjoy the happiness and joy with others and experience the sense of success. The second classroom practice is different from the instruction in class, and it is a platform for students to give free rein to their imagination and creativity. It is as important as the classroom teaching.
3. Helping Students Build Confidence
It is well-known that confidence can make one successful. Similarly, if students have confidence, they will be successful in English learning.
Because interest can be divided into two types: the stable and unstable interest, how to encourage students to learn English with great interest is a great problem. More confidence and firm determination are needed. The most importance is to set a goal before learning. Of course, there is no learning without a goal. Once students have confidence, they can overcome a lot of difficulties they may face, and devote themselves to learning.
At the first stage of learning English, teachers must help students set up a realistic goal, and then make progress little by little to achieve this goal. And through this step, students can do better than before. So teachers should respect and trust students in the course of teaching and learning. The building of confidence, the students’ successful experience of learning, the teacher’s attitude and students’ self-assessment can not be separated. In the modern teaching and learning, to let students experience the sense of success is very important and necessary. In this process, students can collect the information, discuss problems with their classmates, work hard on the questions, and take an active part in class activities. In the practical learning, students themselves can experience much sense of success; which will further enhance the interest in English learning.
4. Cultivating Students to Form Good Habits
As the proverb says: Habit is the second nature. It is certain that a good habit of learning English is very necessary. A good habit is not obtained immediately. On the contrary, it is formed gradually in the students’ practice. First of all, it will take some time and hard work to form, good habits, and they will do great help to English learning. Why do so many students feel it more and more difficult to learn English? Probably, the reason is that they have not yet formed good habits. So the teacher should pay great attention to the cultivation of good habits of students, and help them cultivate these habits. There are some ways as follows.
In the classroom instruction, teachers should remind students to form good habits. At first some teachers are not aware of the significance, but after many times, they will realize the importance of good habits, and step by step teachers should help students to