Sunday, November 05, 2006

How "speaking" is related to "The Input Hypothesis"

As I said, "The Input Hypothesis" is consists of five sections. I thought all of these were related to, but some of these are hard to understand what they are.
(1)The acquisition-Learning Hypothesis (習得・学習仮説)
Aquisition: learn language naturally , unconscious
Learning: study what language is, conscious
They are characteristics.
Regarding speaking, I'm not sure what "speaking naturally" is. From this point of view,I'm going to ask JHS
"What kind of activity is needed to speak naturally in English class?" and
"Do you think you have enough time for speaking?"
Through these questionaire, I want to understand what "Speaking in JH these days" is like.

(2)The Natural Order Hypothesis (自然順序仮説)
Actually, I don't understand whether it is related to speaking or not.
We start to understand some English words which is something easy.

(3)The Monitor Hypothesis (モニター仮説)
Monitor: The function(or working) that some grammatical knowledge may effect our speaking activity.
Three conditions are needed for us to work "monitor" well.
① We have plenty of time to corect our mistakes
 ② Pay attention to linguistic form
 ③ We have grammartical knowledge to some extent

It is said that English teacher should try to give "correct English (information)"when students make mistakes. It helps learner to do feedback unconsciously. Never say "You made a mistake"!

I have to make it clear that what kind of instruction is effective when students speak.
"What kind of instruction do your teacher give when you make mistakes in speaking and is it good or bad for you?"

(4)The Input Hypothesis (入力仮説)
Language materials should be easy to understand, interested. Speaking isn't grammar, so teachet should pesuade students to make mistake when they speak. I want to know what kind of materials are effective for English learner.

"In speaking,what kind of activity are you interested in, and why?"

(5)The Affective Filter Hypothesis(情意フィルター仮説)
Learners should be opened for Input. And we need good (relaxed) atmosphere in English class. For example, at the beginning of the class, speaking plays an important role.Yes, anything will do. Greeting, what you are interested in, what day today is etc…. It's fun for students.

"When do you think there's something pleasant in English class?
speaking, reading, listening, and writing? why?"

Sunday, October 29, 2006

My paper!

''6 chapters which can change English education"
written by Masaharu Morinaga
This is a book which my teacher Mr. James M Hall gave and advised me to read. Especially, I'm interested in speaking in English class. So I am trying to interpret "The Input Hypothesis" which is written in introduction of that book.
First of all, let me think what it is.

It is said that "The Input Hypothesis" is consists of 5 hypothesis.

①The Acquisition-Learning Hypothesis
According to this one, acquisition is more effective than learning. In this stage, "systematic" is a key-word(like; systematic knowledge).
②The Natural Order Hypothesis
What kind of order is the most effective for Japanese English learner to introduce English?
③The Monitor Hypothesis
In fact, we tend to be nervous of making mistakes in the case of speaking. After that, we usually keep silent. That prevents us from speaking, the author afraid.
④The Input Hypothesis
There are some kind of qualifications(or condition) to be ideal.
1,understand easily 2,interested 3,something not to be arranged grammar section
4,appropriate quantity
⑤Affective Filter Hypothesis
Human mental frailty sometimes prevents us getting perfect input. In other words, we can't reach the stage of "Intake".
Regarding speaking, I think ②、③and ④ are related to it(English speaking).
From now and on, I'm going to ask some junior high school students to do questionaire to know their attitude and thoughts toward speaking.

My research question is "What do JHS think about speaking in English class"
To make it clear, I am going to ask both 1st grade students and 3rd grade students to do questionaire to compare what they are thinking like…
Which do you think more important in English class,speaking or grammar? Why so?
Which do you like more, speaking or grammar? Why so?
How much information(instruction) are given by teachers in English? Is it appropriate?

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

HW for 19/07/2006

Today, I try to write about "English teaching method".
My teacher, Mr. James M Hall adivised me to read "The way to teach English based on brand-new study of course".(This might includes some grammatical mistakes, I'm afraid).
The reason why I chose "speaking" as a tytle of thesis was due to my stay in Australia. During 4 months, I talked with Aussie a lot, and that inspired me very much. My opinion for English has changed as time went by.
"Speaking is much better than grammar". Now, let's start for my thesis!

1.The importance of speaking. A role in communication.
English is getting more important as an international language. Moreover, it's increasing that our chances to talk with foreigners whose cultures are different from ours.
We shouldn't ignore other functions (ex:listening) though speaking is important in such a situation. Especially, listening plays an important part in communication because it includes not only "encoding" but "decoding". One of that examples is called "collaborative listening" which is composed of two parts. One is "speaker" and another one is "listener". Both of them should cooporate with each other to make it better. Actually, it's common to learn how to pronnounce for each word or some sentences in Japan, but it's no use bacause communication is what is called "massage focus". In other words, we need to get the speaking ability by using communicative ways.

2.The features of speaking language

 3.Expressions in conversation
First of all, there are three expressions that we have to learn by heart.

○Expressions which control progression of conversation such as,
"I don't understand you." /"Could you say that again?"

This book says "Silent doesn't make money in English."

  ○Gambit(some kind of signal) such as,
"Excuse me, but" /"The problem is…"/"By the way…"

These help us to understand the frame of conversation.

  ○Filler to make it smooth such as,
"Really?"/"Are you with me?"

Anyway, These expression should be introduced before we are ready to start communicating.

 4.Speaking guidelines for speaking
In this section, five activities are introduced as a speaking activity.

○ Information gap
To give some information each other, so that we can do our tasks.
○ Presentation followed by questions
"Show and tell" style is this kind of activity. After someone finish presentation, other student would ask some questions to him/her.
○ Role play
For example: to pretend to be a customner and clerk.
 ○ Game
Such as "Twenty questions"
Yes/No question.
○ Debate
Basically, we have two sides.
The one is "affirmative side", and another one is"negative".Either side should be a winner.

5.Post communication activity
It should be considered that fluency is more important than accuracy in speaking lesson.

written by Akihiko Mochizuki, Taishukan Shoten 2001
"English teaching method based on Brand-new course of study"

Thursday, June 29, 2006

A letter for ALTs

Nice to meet you! My name is Yohei . I'm a college student who is majoring English. Today, I'd like to tell you what you have to pay attention while you are in Japan as an English teacher.
First of all, you shouldn't be passive but active. As you know, some Japanese students are a liitle bit shy, quiet. With your help, they will enjoy talking with you.
Once you get used to custom and culture in Japan, it will be a good idea to study Japanese. It is really good way to know so many difficulty Japanese students have in studying English.
Finally, the most important thing living in Japan is enjoying your stay. Yes, we have this kind of proverb both in Japanese and in English.
'' When in Rome, do as the Romans do.''
Have a good time in Japan!

Thursday, June 08, 2006

The tytle of thesis

What I am really interested is 「The effectiveness of speaking in English class」.The reason why I chose this tytle was speaking isn't thought to be an important part ofEnglish education in Japan. I have studied it for 10 years so far, and have experienced various kinds of activities such as dictation, oral practice. TV sow said that speaking had an ability to stimulate human's brain. It must be related to English education, I think. Surely, I haven't decided what kind of questionaires I 'm going to ask to do. All the same, I really want to work on this kind of stuff.

Friday, May 26, 2006

HW for 31/05/2006

Which site: Webcat Plus
Key word: English class
The name of the book: Cool English Level 5 Teacher's Guide with Audio CDs
Published by: Cambridge University Press

Cool English is a 6-level contemporary version of join. It is organized in lesson plans for each class session. These lesson plans give suggestions on different ways of exploiting the activities, plus extra ideas and materials. It includes clear and concise instructions with step-by-step explanations which simplify lesson-planning for the teacher. The guide is interleaved with the Pupil's Book and contains all the tape scripts. The Class Audio CDs are packaged with the Teacher's Guide. They contain all the songs and the recordings from the Pupil's Book, as well as the listening tests.

Sunday, May 21, 2006

HW for 24/05/2006

I read this week. I am going to mention 4 points below.
○What I read ○Who wrote it  ○ What the author said ○What I thought.

    ☆Chapter 1  「What is English education for」
The author argued that education consisted of two elements. One is "personal enrichment"and another one is "utility". Yes, education consists of these. Who said? It was Reischauer (The former American Ambassador to Japan). One more important thing is: It is necessary to think self-assertion important because self-assertion is on the way to the 「imput」

☆Chapter 2  「What kind of English we teach」
The 「Course of study」 says we should choice what we are intereted from these categories「daily life, customs, history, geography」.Atually, there are some types of textbooks here in Japan now. After skimming through them, teachers will understand what klind of materials they should give to learnars.

☆Chapter 3   「How we teach and evaluate」
From the point of view of the imput theory , it is generally thought that 「language is speech」. But it is not a good idea to force to speak English like a machine. To deal with the mistakes which was made at the stage of imput theory, we have to let learners know their mistakes. the Author said it was the most effective that let them know. We may make 10 thousand mistakes at this stage.

☆Chapter4   「What kind of ability is needed for English teachers」
Accoding to the author, teachers need five types of Love. ①Love for English ②Love for myself ③Love for leaners ④Love for earth ⑤Love for time
I totally agree with this idea.We should be full of Love.
In this chapter, author cited a statistic. It was about "What kind of teachers are ideal for students"
○teach with fun ○be good at intonation ○be fair all the students ○be good at talking ○be not only kind but also strict

☆Chapter5   「What made learners unpleasanEnglish」
"Not good" students are generally divided into three parts.
○get less points than he/she expected
○be good at math, but not English
○he/she is expected to be good student, but not

One more thing in which I was interested was:
"the demand for teachers" like chapter4
○more opportunity to communicate with AET
○be eager to the class
○try to change the attitude towards both students and evaluation

☆Chapter6   「What kind of problems we have」
It is said that, whether I am for "An English education in early days" or not, I should read "Hand-book of how to teach English for children". It is sure some people are agree with "English education in elemantary school" and the others don't. At the conclusion, the author argued that we don't have so many problems to do it. Just be prudent to carried out.

   Actually, we have many, many problems in English education. Nowadays, even some elementary school students started to learn English as a second language. Compared to the overseas student, we are good at grammar, writing and learn by heart. On the other hand, we are not good at speaking, listening, and "the most important" communicating.

    「英語科教育を変える6章」 森永正治著

    「6Chapters which change English education」 written by Masaharu Morinaga