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On Spoken English Teaching

By Ricardo Richardson,2014-09-12 15:17
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On Spoken English Teaching

    On Spoken English Teaching

    AbstractIn English language teaching, the most important thing is that teachers teach the students to use the language. First of all, the language is regarded as the social intercourse tool. Only when people use language can they cause communication. And the learner should master the language skills and try to speak the language which is the real goal of learning the language.

    The key point for spoken English teaching is to motivate students' learning interests. To reach this goal, teachers should let the learners know about the necessities and the characteristics of spoken language. And teachers should also hold the characteristics of designing speaking tasks, (for example, maximum foreign talk, even participation, high motivation, right language level) and take effective measures to develop some suitable activities, (for instance, free discussion, role-play,gapactivities.) Because designing

    speaking activities that maximize students' opportunity to speak is one of the central task for language teachers. Only in this way, the learners will continue communicating by using the language and make great progress in language communication.

    Key words: language skill, motivate interests, spoken language, suitable activities

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     要;在英语教学当中(最重要的是教会学生使用语言(首先(语言作为社会交际工具(只有人们使用语言才能产生交流。也只有学习者在学习过程中掌握语言技巧把语言说出来才能达到使用语言的真正目的。

    英语口语教学的关键在于激发学生的兴趣(为了达到这个目的(教师不仅要让学习者对口语本身特征与学习口语的必要性有所了解(而且还要把握口语教学的课堂设计特色!如;最大程度的外语交谈、公平参与、高的积极性、适当的语言水平,以及采用有效的方法!如;自由讨论、角色表演、信息空白活动,来进行适当活动的开展。因为设计口语教学活动使学生充分利用机会说是语言教师的中心任务(也只有这样才能使学习者不断在学习中用语言交流(并在语言交流中进一步学习。

    关键词;语言技巧,激发兴趣,口语,适当的活动

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    Contents

    Abstract………………………………………………………………………i Contents……………………………………………………………………iii Introduction…………………………………………………………………1 1. The necessity and characteristics of spoken language………………1

    1.1 The necessity of spoken language…………………………………1

    1.2 The characteristics of spoken language …………………………2 2. Designing speaking tasks ………………………………………………2

    2.1 Necessities of designing speaking tasks…………………………3

    2.2 Characteristics of designing speaking tasks…………………………3

    2.2.1 Maximum foreign talk……………………………………………3

    2.2.2 Even participation………………………………………………4

    2.2.3 High motivation………………………………………………4

    2.2.4 Right language level………………………………………………5 3. Three basic types of activity……………………………………………5

    3.1 Free discussion ……………………………………………5

    3.2 Role-play…………………………………………………………6

    3.3 'Gap' activities……………………………………………………8 Conclusion ………………………………………………………………8 Bibliography………………………………………………………………9 Acknowledgement…………………………………………………………10

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     Introduction

    With the development of society, language speaking becomes more and more important in our daily life.

    In language teaching, not only should teachers develop learners' listening skill, reading skill, and writing skill but also speaking skill. Speaking is the final purpose of the students to use the language.

    Because of the importance of speaking stated above, as teachers, we should take suitable measures to teach speaking. And we should get the learners to speak. In addition, we should pay attention to the necessities and characteristics of spoken language and organize some suitable activities for teaching language.

    1. The necessity and characteristics of spoken language 1.1 The necessity of spoken language

    “Speaking is the skill that the students will be judged upon most in

    real-life situations. It is an important part of everyday interaction and most often first impression of a person is based on his or her ability to speak

    [1]fluently and comprehensibly.”So, as teachers, we have a responsibility to

    teach our students as much as possible to be able to speak freely.

    In the traditional classroom, the learning of English has been just related to linguistic knowledge, e.g. knowledge of the vocabulary and the dull grammar rules ,with little or no attention paid to practicing language skill .In

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    fact ,speaking is a skill ,just like cycling ,playing basketball or driving a car .It not only can be understood and memorized ,but also can be imitated and practiced.

    1.2 The characteristics of spoken language

    One of the characteristics of spoken language in our daily life is that speech is spontaneous .That is to say, in most situations, people do not plan what they are going to say before speak. Only in more situations, for example, when a person has been asked to give a speech or take part in a speech contest do people plan and organize their speech carefully. As a matter of fact, speech is spontaneous means that it is full of false starts, repetitions, incomplete sentences, and short phrases. So, as teachers, we should expect the students to produce complete sentences in language classroom.

    Another characteristic of spoken language is the time-constraint. That is to say, the students must be able to produce unplanned utterances in real time; otherwise, people will not have the patience to listen to them. It is not the only issue that is difficult for language students; they must also consider whom they are talking to and be able to check if they are being understood or they need to be able to change strategies. One great advantage in learning to speak is that the speaker gets immediate feedback from the listener, so the speaker can adjust the message immediately.

2. Designing speaking tasks

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2.1 The necessity of designing speaking tasks

    When we design speaking tasks, one important thing we should bear in mind is the language proficiency level of the students. On the one hand, we ask the students to do tasks that are above their level, they will feel difficult and will simply become frustrated and demodulated. On the other hand, it is good to give the students tasks at times that challenged them. Because if speaking tasks are always too easy, of course, they can also become demodulated.

    2.2 Characteristics of designing speaking tasks

    2.2.1 Maximum foreign talk

    Maximum foreign talk involves exploiting for language learning not only the planned activities; but also the classroom management that revolves around them. The lesson has to begun and individual activities have to be organized, practical problems arise, and so on. This provides a rich source of communicative needs in the foreign language classroom of communicative

    [2]needs in the foreign language classroom.One common problem in speaking

    activities is that many teachers use the learner's mother tongue in this aspect of their work. This may often be a necessary decision, in the interests of organizing the lessons clearly and efficiently. But, it also means sacrificing valuable opportunities for well-motivated foreign language use. Another common problem is that the teacher talks too much of the time, thus talking away valuable practice time from the student. In addition, the students often

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    produce one or two simple utterances in the foreign language and spend the rest of the time chatting in their mother tongue.

    2.2.2 Even participation

    Even participation refers to whether the task takes place among the whole class or in small groups, a successful task should encourage speaking from as many different students as possible. For example, teachers can use group activities which create opportunities for sharing personal feelings and emotions among learners, rather than general subject matter or topics external to self. Of course, group activities can enhance the understanding of cooperation with each other. In addition, "the task should be designed in a way so that the outspoken students do not dominate to guarantee equal

    [3] opportunities for students of different level".

    2.2.3 High motivation

    High motivation is one of the most important variables in successful language learning. How do teachers do to increase and maintain the motivation of students? To achieve this goal, teachers should organize types of activities in class. "In many new communicative programs, students are expected to take a active part in learning process. They are put into situations in which they must share responsibilities, make decisions, evaluate their own

    [4]progress, develop initial preference, and so on". So great care should be

    taken to make sure the activities are in line with the student's ability to deal with the activities. Because students have the courage to speak when the topic

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    is interesting or a clear objective that must be reached. But if the task is too easy, the students may become demodulated and they think the task is childish and thus lose interest.

    2.2.4 Right language level

    Right language level plays an important role in language learning. As teachers, we should choose the language that is at the right level. That is to say, the speaking task must be designed so that the students can complete the task successfully with the language that they master. Suppose students lack too much knowledge of vocabulary or grammar the task will become frustrating .Of course, the students are likely to give up or revert back to the native language.

3. Three basic types of activity

    3.1 Free discussion

    Free discussion can provide important opportunities for developing certain aspect of fluency. Ideally, over a period of time, free discussion activities which involve students in talking about a range of topics which engage their interests, opinions, histories, and experiences. Because it can stimulate students to give opinions, agree or disagree, stated preference, and make comparisons. Free discussion can also encourage students to use the language needed to sustain conversation over a period of time by drawing in other speakers. This last point, in fact, relates to perhaps the greatest

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    advantage that free discussion has over other types of activity. This is the opportunity it provides for students to practice the strategies required in interpersonal communication, for example, taking and holding turns, introducing a topic or shifting to a new topic, and encouraging responses and

    [5] other contributions.

    Teachers often worry about something. For example, the students may sometimes be anxious about formulating opinions or ideas about topics which may be unfamiliar and which they may never have discussed in their first language; thus they have no confidence to speak. Free discussion, even if it takes place in small groups, does not ensure participation from all members. For these reasons, discussion usually needs support of some kind. One kind of support is firm the amount of information given by the teacher or materials. For example, some activities use some pictures or quotation which focus the discussion and provide content and linguistic resources. Another kind of support is from phrasing the activity with careful instructions. For instance, the students can prepare for their discussion by writing down some ideas. A third kind of support comes from structuring interactions with advice for group roles, such as chair or monitor, though the teacher will need to monitor the choice of spokesmen from one activity to another to ensure equality of opportunity for public monologue. A fourth kind of support comes from establishing goals for the discussion.

    3.2 Role-play

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    Role-play refers to a number of different activities, ranging from simple dialogues prompted by specific information on role card to more complex simulations which pass through a number of stages. For years, teachers have taught students by using dialogues but produce the quick responses, what should teachers do to make the dialogue more communicative? First of all turn the dialogues into role plays, so the students can act as someone else and they will be less inhibited about speaking in front of class when they are acting.

    Role-play has a number of advantages if activities are performed in pairs or groups rather than one group acting in front of the class. It encourages a large number of students to participate. It is useful rehearsal for the activities that are based on real-life situations, both transaction are interpersonal. Most students enjoy role-play. For one reason, they do not have to face the cognitive challenge of finding original and intelligent things to contribute. For another reason, a role-play which has a clear goal gives a purpose and a direction to the discussion. Moreover, as students present a variety of roles during a programmer of role-plays they will practice language which varies according to the setting, the formality of the situation, or emotion required for the particular role. For example, to persuade, disagree, complain, and so on.

    Role-play perhaps has a greater chance free discussion to involve all the students and oblige practice except when free discussion is limited to pair

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