A Problem Tense to Teach The Present Per

Vol. 3 Issue#80
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Edited and Published by
Tarun Patel
Bhaskar Pandya
Kaushal Kotadia
Rajesh Bharvad
Vol. 3 Issue#80
January 24, 2011
Newsletter Contents
Word of the week: PPP
Video: Shaping the Way We Teach English: Module 10, Alternative Assessment
Susan Ryan’s Tip: ‘The Importance of the Schwa Vowel Sound’
Article: ‘ICT in Education: HOW and WHAT to study in 21st Century?’ – UNESCO
Research Paper: ‘A Problem Tense to Teach: The Present Perfect’ by İsmail ÇAKIR
Research Paper: ‘Bringing Internet & Multimedia into ELT Classrooms’ by Rajesh
Bharvad & Tarun Patel
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Word of the week: PPP
PPP is a paradigm or model used to describe typical stages of a presentation of new
language. It means presentation, production and practice. The practice stage aims
to provide opportunities for learners to use the target structure. Criticism of this
paradigm argues that the freer ‘practice’ stage may not elicit the target language as
it is designed to do, as in this meaning-based stage, students communicate with any
language they can. It is not clear that forcing students to use certain structures to
communicate in a practice activity will necessarily mean they will use these
structures spontaneously later.
The teacher presents and illustrates the communicative purpose of a new structure
‘If I was you…’ for advice. Then learners use prompts to complete sentences with
the correct forms of the verbs. They practise by giving each other advice.
In the classroom
Despite current doubts about the usefulness of the practice stage in the PPP model,
it is still a common framework to find in classes and in materials.
[retrieved from http://www.teachingenglish.org.uk]
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Video: Shaping the Way We Teach English: Module 10,
Alternative Assessment
Alternative assessment is a way to directly evaluate learners’ language skills. A
paper-pencil test shows knowledge about the language. Alternative assessment
shows learners’ ability to use the language.
There are many reasons for using alternative assessment techniques. With
alternative assessment: * Learners make real use of the target language–in this
case English–for an actual purpose. * Learners demonstrate the things that they
have learned in class. * Learners take responsibility for and self-direct some of
their own learning. * Learners’ motivation to learn and use the target language may
increase. * And, alternative assessment provides students with an opportunity to
directly display their progress to others in their school and community, and to
family members.
An innovative offering from the Office of English Language Programs, Shaping
the Way We Teach English, is a 14-module teacher training video series developed
and produced in cooperation with the University of Oregon.
Watch the video at http://www.eltweekly.com/elt-newsletter/2011/01/80-videoshaping-the-way-we-teach-english-module-10-alternative-assessment/
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Susan Ryan’s Tip: ‘The Importance of the Schwa Vowel
In order to improve your English pronunciation it is critical that you learn to use
the schwa sound. That is because the combination of stressed syllables with long
clear vowels and unstressed syllables with the schwa vowel sound help to create
the rhythm of spoken English. Native English speakers listen for this rhythm and it
helps them to identify words.
What is the schwa sound?
The schwa is a vowel sound, it is not a letter of the alphabet. It sounds like “uh”
and is pronounced with your tongue in the middle section of your mouth. Your
mouth should be very relaxed when you say this sound. Because the schwa sound
can be represented by any vowel, it is the most common vowel sound in English.
The IPA symbol for the schwa sound is /ə/.
Here are some examples of how native English speakers use the schwa vowel
sound in words with more than one syllable. In the first group of words below the
vowel in first syllable is stressed and the vowel in the second syllable sounds like a
schwa /ə/.
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In this group of words the vowel in first syllable sounds like a schwa /ə/ and the
vowel in the second syllable is stressed.
Remember that vowels that occur in stressed syllables have a long clear sound. The
pitch should be slightly higher. The vowels in unstressed syllables are reduced and
are often pronounced with the schwa sound. Pronouncing vowels in this pattern
will help you create a rhythm that makes it easy for native English speakers to
understand you.
An excellent animated website that you can use to view the articulation of the
schwa vowel sound and all of the other American English vowel and consonant
sounds is the Phonetics website from the University of Iowa.
Susan Ryan is an American English pronunciation teacher and accent reduction
coach. She currently lives in South Florida. Read more articles by Susan at
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Article: ‘ICT in Education: HOW and WHAT to study in
21st Century?’ – UNESCO Tashkent
“Enhancing educational quality is a constant process and is our top priority.
Education systems work to prepare the next generation for a successful future in a
changing world, the knowledge economy of 21st century. Today, it is necessary to
help students develop the intellectual skills they need for a higher order of thinking
and to assist them to realize their abilities and potential.
Intel is working to fruition with teachers all over the world, implementing one of
the most effective and successful initiatives in the field of education. Their work in
education includes programs for basic, secondary, tertiary and lifelong education.
These multilateral projects between Intel, UNESCO Tashkent and The Ministry of
Public Education of the Republic Uzbekistan present successful examples of
private and public sector cooperation. They stand as mentors in the field of
education for the professional development of teachers, sharing the ultimate goal
of improving the quality of education”.
Read the full article at http://www.unescobkk.org/education/ict/onlineresources/databases/ict-in-education-database/item/article/how-and-what-tostudy-in-21st-century/
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Research Paper: ‘A Problem Tense to Teach: The Present
Perfect’ by Đsmail ÇAKIR
Đsmail ÇAKIR, Ph.D., is an assistant professor and currently working in ELT
Department, Faculty of Education, Kayseri, Turkey. He has several publications
on foreign language teaching, and is specifically interested in teaching English to,
teacher trainer, teaching young learners, teaching language skills, teaching
culture etc.
The perfect in English creates problems for both elementary and advanced
learners. It is interpreted frequently as an optional alternative to the simple past
tense; this interpretation of its function leads to frequent errors of tense usage.
Difficulties with the present perfect tense are often reinforced by faulty teaching.
The basic uses of the perfect are outlined and contrasted with the functions of the
simple past tense. (Richards, 1979:95)
1. Introduction
The present perfect tense is one of the most, probably the most, problematic
tenses for foreign language learners. It is not so easy to learn for foreign language
learners, Turkish students in this study, to be able to use the present perfect tense
correctly and appropriately for the appropriate situations as they have difficulties in
grasping it. This tense is usually confused with the simple past by the Turkish
students. The differences between the present perfect and the past simple are
complicated and difficult to analyse, and the rules given in grammars are not
always very clear and accurate (Swan, 1982:493). Not only in Turkish but also in
many of the European languages present perfect is used as the simple past tense.
Even American usage is also not exactly the same as British.
The use of present perfect tense appears to create special difficulties for
foreign learners in sentences as follows.
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• He has never met you before. (during the whole of past time up to the
• That is the second time someone has interrupted me this evening. (during
the whole of this evening and up to now)
• This is the first cigarette I've smoked. (during the whole of today and up
to now)
The present perfect in the sentences above automatically implies "until now".
Considering the difficulties in comprehending this tense for Turks and misusing,
this study intends to clarify the differences between the present perfect and past
2. The Meaning of the Present Perfect Tense.
The present perfect is almost a kind of present tense. When we say that
something has happened, or has been happening, we are generally thinking about
the present as well as the past. Hence, we can say that this tense is a sort of mixture
of present and past. It always implies a strong connection with the present and is
chiefly used in conversations, letters, newspapers and television and radio reports.
When we make a present perfect sentence, we could usually make a present tense
about the same situation. Difficulties for foreign learners arise either from the fact
that their own language hasn't led them to look at events in this way, or from the
fact that their language contains a verb from that looks similar to the English form
but operates differently. For example:
I have known you for a long time. (I know you well.)
I have been working all day. (And I am tired.)
Jane has gone to England. (She is in England now)
Have you read that book? (Do you know it?)
3. How to Use the Present Perfect Tense
The present perfect describes a past happening which is related in some way
to the present. So it can be regarded as a tense of past happening-related-to-present
time (Leech and Startwik, 1996:68). The place of the present perfect tense is
shown in the following diagram.
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There are two factors that appear to operate in determining an English
speaker's choice.
The perfect forms indicate that an action or event occurs before the time
indicated by the context. We can, therefore, distinguish between;
a) Come over and see us when our guests leave.
b) Come over and see us when our guests have left.
The first sentence might suggest that the arrival of one set of visitors will
coincide with the leaving of the other, whereas the second one clearly
indicates that "our guests" will no longer be with us when our visitors
The perfect forms also indicate that an action or event has produced a
result or
state of affairs that is relevant to the current situation, and there is often a
casual connection between the time (adverbial) clause and main clause.
E.g. You will feel a lot better after you've had a rest.
The conjunction "after" itself clearly establishes the time relationship between the
two activities or events rather than to establish a time difference between them.
The conjunctions commonly used to introduce time (adverbial) clauses are: when,
as soon as, before, after, until, once, by the time ...etc.
We can summarise the use of the present perfect tense by analysing it in two
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a) Actions and situations continuing up to the present. b) Finished actions and
Now let's analyse them one by one.
a. Actions and Situations Continuing up to Present
1. We often use the present perfects tense to talk about actions and situations
which began in the past, and which have continued up to the moment when we
speak (or just before). For example:
• I have lived (or I have been living) in Ankara since 1989. (Not I am
living ....)
We have known each other for a
long time. (Not we know ....)
• The taxi has arrived. (It is now outside.)
• All police leave has been cancelled. (The police remain on duty)
• Her doll has been broken. (It's still not mended)
2. We also use the present perfect to talk about a series of repeated actions
which happened up to the present. For example:
I have often wondered where she gets her money
We have been seeing a lot of Henry and Diana recently.
I have written four letters today.
How often have you been in love in your life?
3. "Since" and "For" are used with the present perfect tense to indicate
beginning or
duration or continuance of an action or state of affairs up to the time specified by
the context or situation.
i. Since is used with a phrase or clause denoting the beginning of an action
or state of affairs, to indicate the continuance of that action or state of affairs from
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the time specified until the present time, or until the time specified in the past. For
• I have lived in Ankara since 1989.
• We haven't seen each other since we left the school.
ii. For is used with the phrase denoting a period of time, to indicate the
duration or continuance of an action or state of affairs up to the time specified by
the context or situation. For example:
• I have lived in Ankara for ten years.
• We haven't seen each other for a long time.
4. Present perfect is used for long actions and situations which started in the
past and went on until very recently. For example:
• I have painted the rooms since lunchtime.
• A: You look hot.
B: Yes, I have been running.
• I have been reading your book. It is not bad.
5. The present perfect is often used with expressions of time which refer to a
period "up to now": for instance, all this year, all my life, so far, during the 20th
century, recently, lately, since, for up to now, up to present. We do not use the
present perfect. For example:
He has worked hard all this year.
Nothing has been declared so far.
Have you seen him lately?
I haven't smoked all my life.
b. Finished Actions and Events
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1. The present perfect simple is often used to talk about past actions and
events which are completely finished. This only happens when the past events have
some present importance; usually they are "news", and generally we could make a
present tense sentence about the same situation. For example:
The president has been assassinated. (The president is dead.)
The USA declared war on Iraq. (Iraq and the USA are at war.)
I can't play football because I have broken my leg. (My leg is broken.)
I have been all over Kırıkkale. ( I know Kırıkkale well.)
I have seen this film before. I don't want to see it again now
She has left the company. She doesn't work there now.
2. Present perfect is often used to give news: it is especially common in
reports, letters and conversations. For example:
• She has had a baby. It’s a boy.
• According to the latest reports, the NATO forces have pushed back the
Serbs and retaken the town.
• I am sorry to tell you that you have failed your exam.
3. Present perfect is also used to talk about past actions which are not
recent, but are "still with us" as part of our experience and knowledge. For
• I have never been to the USA. ( So I can still have it)
• Have you read "War and Peace?" (Do you know War and Peace?)
4. Present perfect is used after a superlative. For example:
• It is the most interesting film I have ever seen.
• He is the best teacher I have ever met.
• This is the first time I have smoked.
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5. We don't use definite time expressions in present perfect tense when we
want to talk about a past event. With adverbs of finished time we normally use past
simple. If we say "when" a past event happened (for example by using time
expressions) we do not usually use the present perfect tense. For example:
• The president has been assassinated.
The president was assassinated last year.
• He has left.
He has left an hour ago.
• The USA has declared war on Iraq.
The USA declared war on Iraq two months ago.
• I have spoken the boss about my holiday.
I spoke to the boss about my holiday yesterday.
6. The present perfect is often used with time adverbs like never, just ever,
before, yet, already, still. For example:
• A: Could I speak to Jane, please?
B: I am afraid, she has just left. (A short time ago)
• A: Is Jane going to phone you later?
B: No, she has already phoned me. (Jane phoned before Bill expected
her to phone.)
• The post hasn't arrived yet. ( It probably will arrive)
• Have you paid the bill yet? (Perhaps you have not paid the bill, but
you are going to pay it soon.)
• I haven't been to England before.
• Mrs. Bell is out. Jenny and Nick are cooking dinner to surprise her.
Jenny: I've washed the lettuce and I've chopped the tomatoes. I can
make the salad now.
Nick: No you can't. You haven’t peeled the potatoes yet.
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Jenny: Oh yes. I have. Look! Here they are. I have already cooked
them. And what have you done? Have you finished the washing up
Nick: Yes, I have just finished the washing up.
7. We introduce an event with the present perfect, but we continue to talk
it with the Past Simple.
• A: Ann has broken her arm.
B: How did she break it?
A: She fell on some rocks.
8. When we talk about past events which have no present importance, we do
not use the present perfect tense, past simple is used instead. For example:
• Lincoln was assassinated for political purposes.
• Some people think that Shakespeare travelled a lot in Germany.
c. Summary
Here is a summary of the main uses of the Present Perfect Tense
• Talking about something which began in the past and hasn't changed.
(Especially with for, since.)
• Talking about general experience: e.g. what have you done in your life
up to now? (especially with ever or never)
• Talking about recent events or states. (especially with already, still and
• Talking about very recent events. (with just)
• Talking about events whose results are still noticeable. (especially with
the Present Perfect Progressive)
• Talking about events after a superlative. e.g. It is the worst film I have
ever seen.
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4. Some Suggested Supplementary Activities.
A. Complete the dialogues using the Present Perfect or Past Simple.
A: I....................... (see) Mert last night.
B: Oh really, I................................ (not see) him for two years. How is
A: We..................... (go) to the theatre two days ago.
B: ...................... you (enjoy) the play?
A: Yes, it........................ (be) very good.
A: I ................................ (never/hear) of this group before. Are they
B: Yes, they are very popular. They ...........................(be) famous for
B. Choose the correct sentences.
1. a. I saw Ali five days ago.
b. I have seen Ali five days ago.
2. a. Did you ever eat Chinese food?
b. Have you ever eaten Chinese food?
3. a. He is the funniest person I met.
b. He is the funniest person I have ever met.
4. a. Ali has been to America. He is in America now
b. Ali has been to America. He is back now.
5. a. Have you ever tried Japanese food in your life?
b. Have you ever tried Japanese food last year?
6. a. I haven't yet finished my homework
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b. I haven't finished my homework yet.
7. a. They have lived in Ankara for two years.
b. They have lived in Ankara since two years.
8. a. I ate two sandwiches yesterday evening.
b. I have eaten two sandwiches yesterday evening.
C. Complete the story. Put the verb in brackets into the Present Perfect or
Past Simple tense.
One Sunday evening two men (a)................... (Meet) in a London pub. One
of them was very unhappy.
"Life is terrible, everything in the world is really boring" he said.
“Don’t say that," said the other man.
"Life is marvellous! The world is so exciting! Think about Italy. It is a
wonderful country. (b) ............you ever.............. (Be) there?"
"Oh, yes. I (c)................ (Be) there last year and I (d)....................... (Not
like) it.”
"Well, (e)................you (be) to Norway?"
"Oh yes. I (f)............ (Go) in 1989 and I (g)...............(see) the midnight sun.
And I (h)...............just.............. (Return) from safari in Africa. I (i)............. (Not
enjoy) it. It was really boring."
"Well," said the other man. "I think you are very ill. Only the best
psychiatrist can help you. Go to see Dr. Greenbaum in Harley Street."
“I am Dr. Greenbaum" answered the man sadly.
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(New Headway Elementary:2008)
D. Complete each sentence with already, still, yet or just.
1. My room is dirty. I haven't cleaned it ................
2. My room is clean. I have ...............cleaned it.
3. My room isn't clean enough for my mom. She thinks I
................haven't cleaned it.
4. I can't believe that you...............haven't finished studying.
5. I haven't studied ..........
6. Have you finished studying..........
E. Write answers to the questions.
What is the best film you have ever seen?
What is the most beautiful place you have ever been to?
What is the funniest TV programme you have ever seen?
What is the most interesting thing you have ever done?
Who is the best teacher you have ever met?
Leech, G. and Startvik, J.(1994). A Communicative Grammar of English. New
York: Longman
Richards, C.J. (1979). Introducing Grammar the Perfect: An Exercise in
Pedagogic: TESOL Quarterly, Vol. 13. No.4
Soars, L. and Soars, J. (2008). Headway Elementary Course Book, Oxford
University Press: London.
Swan, M. (1982). Practical English Usage. Hong Kong: Oxford University Press.
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Research Paper: ‘Bringing Internet & Multimedia into ELT
Classrooms’ by Rajesh Bharvad & Tarun Patel
The evolution of technology has an impact on the way we live, work, teach and
learn. According to Kofi Annan, Secretary-General of the United Nations,
Information and Communication Technology has transformed education. Indeed,
what we are witnessing is a revolution of education. Some believe that ICT
provides global marketing opportunities. Others believe that ICT helps students
broaden their knowledge base. Among this internet is seen a huge prospect in
terms of classroom teaching.
The Internet is without doubt the fastest growing communication technology
today. With such rapid speed, the education field has not been spared the onslaught
of this revolution. The Internet revolution has brought drastic changes to the area
of education. It has revolutionized the way students learn and how teachers teach
in the classrooms. Indeed, the permeation of the Internet technology into
classrooms has created the opportunities for students to be active learners and
allowed instructors to be facilitators. Because of this lessons become more
interactive and students become more independent.
Major benefits of Internet aided teaching in the classroom
The following are the major benefits of using internet in the classroom:
→ Increased Student Motivation
Many students love computers. Students feel comfortable with computers and are
very receptive to any learning activities that involve the computer. Increased
motivation leads to increased language use which leads to improved proficiency.
When a writing activity is truly communicative, as e-mail projects are, the
language is authentic. The students are not going through the motions of an
artificial exercise. They are communicating because they need and want to
communicate. Most of the information on the World Wide Web has been written in
English by native speakers. The Web is, therefore, a rich source of authentic
reading materials in English.
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→ Global Awareness
Information can be exchanged easily between people in different corners of the
world, connecting students around the globe. This enhances their chances of using
the language and such activities may result into high proficiency. Students attest
that this kind of communication increases global understanding.
→ Environmental Friendliness
Use of the Internet can decrease the amount of paper used in the classroom. Much
of the writing can be done on the computer. Web sites can replace some printed
materials thereby conserving natural resources.
Internet in the classroom
→ Research
Research is the number one reason to use the internet in education. Students have a
wealth of information open to them. Often, when they are researching obscure
topics, school libraries do not have the needed books and magazines. The internet
helps solve this problem. Here's an example of a great research project.
→ E-mail Projects
English teachers around the world are finding creative ways to use e-mail in their
classes. They are discovering that e-mail projects can truly help students improve
their writing and reading skills. The communication in e-mail projects can involve
the teacher and each student individually, two students, small groups of students
within a class or groups of students in more than one class.
→ Dialogue Journals
Dialogue journals are a popular means of improving the writing fluency and
reading comprehension of students. Students write in their journals in class or
outside of class. The teacher then collects the journals and responds to the student
entries. Since the focus is on communication, the students write on topics of their
own choosing, and their grammar and spelling errors are not pointed out. Dialogue
journals may easily become electronic, with students sending the teacher their
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journal entries via e-mail rather than in a paper notebook. This type of e-mail
writing assignment is an excellent way to ease students into sharing their writing
→ HUT E-Mail Writing Project
The HUT E-Mail Writing Project and the Cities Project are two examples of
interclass e-mail projects carried out by students in different cities. While these
projects were originally designed for university students, they could easily be
adapted for use with students at any level of education-elementary, secondary,
university or adult education.
EFL instructor Ruth Vilmi at the Helsinki University of Technology in Finland
founded the HUT E-Mail Writing Project in 1993. Since then many students in
Finland, Norway, France, the Czech Republic, Egypt, Korea, Japan, Hong Kong
and the United States have taken part in HUT collaborative writing activities.
Students have collaborated via e-mail on writing research papers, designing robots
and proposing solutions for environmental problems.
→ The Cities Project
An interesting spin-off of the HUT E-Mail Writing Project is the Cities Project
developed by Andrew Hess, an instructor at the New York University in New York
City. Hess invited instructors Ron Corio at Virginia Commonwealth University in
Richmond, Virginia and Christine Meloni at The George Washington University in
Washington, DC to develop an e-mail project for their high intermediate ESL
students. The project involved student collaboration via e-mail on a three-city
travel guide. Classes in New York, Washington, DC, Paris, Trondheim, and Hong
Kong participated in a second Cities Project. In addition to creating a travel guide,
the classes sent each other "culture packages" by snail mail that included such
items as city maps, postcards, newspapers, tapes (both audio and video) and other
memorabilia. More detailed information about the initial Cities Project and
subsequent projects (including culture packages) can be found at Andrew Hess's
web site: http://www.nyu.edu/pages/hess/cities.html. Such activities can be carried
out in India as well.
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→ E-mail Discussion Groups
Students can also sign up for electronic discussion groups. They will receive all of
the messages posted to the group by the other subscribers and they can post their
own messages as well.
Language learners of all ages enjoy communicating in the target language via e-m
ail. Within their own classes, teachers can divide students into groups for e-mail
communication. For example, if the class is reading a collection of short stories,
after the students finish a story, they can write a summary and a critique of it to
send to the other members of their group via e-mail. Small groups of four or five
students work well. Although it may seem artificial for students to write to
classmates with whom they could easily communicate face-to-face, intraclass email projects can be effective in helping the students improve their writing and
reading skills in English. It also gives shy students an opportunity to participate as
much as the more outgoing ones. Of course, it is exciting for students to
communicate with students in other places. It might be another school in the same
city or a school on the other side of the world. If the participants come from
different cultures, the experience will be more stimulating and enriching for all of
the students.
→ Creating a Website
A second project that can help integrate technology while truly getting the students
excited about school is website creation. You can publish a website with your class
about information the students have researched or personally created. Examples of
what this page might focus on include a collection of student-created short stories,
a collection of student-created poems, results and information from science fair
projects, historical 'letters', even critiques of novels could be included.
Consideration on using Internet in the Classroom
English teaching scenarios require teachers to engage in classroom teaching
according to the real world. The main materials, rich emotional scenes and the
specific atmosphere inspire and attract students to take the initiative to study.
→ Systematization
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The aim of English teaching is to provide students with such a learning
environment and conditions. One should compose the communicative structure for
the language environment, and grasping the Meaning Potential of the language.
→ Authenticity
The real context can meet students’ practical needs in communication. In ELT,
teachers have various choices of multimedia software, videos, films, slides,
photographs, and other media. They can also use multimedia tools to provide vivid
materials, creating real contexts and giving background information in order to
help students to create an atmosphere of participation and exchange in different
→ Appropriateness
Multimedia and networks are characterized by the prolific development of
information. Although students can access massive amounts of information, they
cannot digest and absorb it directly. Therefore, they cannot develop their long-term
memory and communicative competence. In order to optimize multimedia English
teaching in context creation in terms of the appropriate selection of information,
we should take care to classify and organize information effectively and make
choices according to students’ needs. Otherwise, there will be too much
information for them. Moreover, attention should also be paid to fit students’
different requests when designing the curriculum, following the process of
information exchange. For example, when setting the curriculum, it should be
known that the difficulty should be slightly higher than the students’ actual level. It
is true that appropriate control of the type and amount of material, as well as
making good use of time, can be more effective when learning English through
multimedia language teaching.
→ Interactivity
During the process of in-classroom English multimedia teaching, it is believed that
the goal of interaction between teachers and students is to achieve exchanges in the
real language context. Teaching content should be designed with consideration of
how to achieve interaction between teachers and students, among students
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themselves, and between students and modern technology. This method of
language teaching provides various ways to promote the growth of students’
creativity, cooperation, and interaction. It also makes multimedia language
teaching and learning active and vivid, from which we can see that the interactive
exchange of information reflects the characteristics and advantages of multimedia
teaching in context creation.
→ Coordination
During the process of optimizing multimedia English teaching in context creation,
it is inappropriate to change the classroom into a platform for information
exchange between students and modern machinery. Attention should be paid to
coordination between teachers and students, teaching materials and methods,
theory and practice and multimedia teaching and the real learning environment.
→ Pluralism
Pluralism with Intelligence requires teachers to choose and create appropriate and
comprehensive educational methods to promote the full development of students
based on the educational content, their intelligence structure, their interests, and
their different characteristics. Teaching English in order to create a multimedia
classroom context not only restricts but also affects the students’ own intellectual
development. English teachers should constantly make use of the advantages of
multimedia teaching to update English teaching concepts and teaching strategies,
and produce scenario-style, animation-style, case-style, analogue-style, and gameshow-style films as self-supporting material to inspire students.
→ Intelligibility
The process of understanding discourse is the process of the context establishment.
An effective way to understand the discourse is to choose and establish an
appropriate context to get people involved in the context. This includes
communicative context, communicative environment, and communication based
on common sense. English teachers should socialize and contextualize the
multimedia classroom, as well as trying to transplant the real use of English into an
in-classroom multimedia environment to improve students’ interpretative skills. It
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is helpful for teachers to use the characteristics of contexts in teaching materials to
enable students to learn when and where they should speak English in line with the
discourse and ultimately improve their English language skills. Teachers can also
use multimedia to help students to predict the text in order to grasp the context and
enhance their comprehensive skills. From a practical context to language
understanding and usage based on different types of training, students may
improve their communicative competence effectively in different contexts.
→ Penetrability
To achieve the success of multimedia English teaching in context creation, English
teachers should involve their own sincere feelings in the classroom and make use
of multimedia to stimulate students’ emotions. This is a joint method, where the
two elements complement each other to promote and optimize the context creation
of multimedia English teaching, which is one of the internal driving forces of
students’ learning interest. The learning process can stimulate students’ desire to
learn, so that students leave with positive feelings after class.
Resources that can be incorporated in the classroom
• Fluency Through Fables
At this site your students will find a short fable to read. After reading the fable,
they can complete a variety of activities: vocabulary matching, a true or false
comprehension exercise, vocabulary completion and written discussion. They can
then use the index to find other fables and accompanying activities.
• Purdue's Online Writing Lab
This site offers instructional handouts on subjects such as punctuation, spelling,
writing research papers and citing sources. Originally created for native speakers, it
has a special section for ESL students that includes explanations about the use of
articles and the use of prepositions in English. http://owl.English.purdue.edu
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• Weekly Idiom Page
This site features a new idiom every two weeks. Each new idiom is given with its
definition and a sample dialogue. http://www.comenius.com/idiom/index.htm l
• Toon in to Idioms
Students will find this site attractive. They will find an idiom along with an
amusing illustration and a sample dialogue that they can listen to if their computer
has speakers. http ://www.elfs.com/2nInX-Title.html
• Crossword Puzzles for ESL Students
This site is a new project undertaken by the Internet TESL Journal. It currently has
four puzzles and is soliciting volunteers to create additional ones. http://www.
• Grammar Safari
Students can participate in hunting activities such as "Hunting adjective clauses in
Little Women" and "Hunting past perfect verbs in a magazine article."
http ://deil.lang.uiuc.edu/web.pages/ grammarsafari.html
• Professor TOEFL's Fun Page
Professor TOEFL will respond to your students' questions about English grammar.
• Self-Study Quizzes for EFL Students
This site is another project of The Internet TESL Journal. Students can take
grammar quizzes in a variety of subject areas such as holidays, sports and culture.
The quizzes are graded on the spot. http://www.aitech.ac.jp/~iteslj/quizzes
Teacher Resources on the Web
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Resources for teachers on the Web are numerous, so it is difficult to present a
complete list when space is limited. The following are important sites for ESL/EFL
• National Clearinghouse for Bilingual Education
Among NCBE's many offerings are hundreds of links to web pages on language
and education issues, lesson plans and other practical classroom information.
• Ask ERIC Virtual Library
This site offers lesson plans and information guides. Of particular interest is the
AskERIC Toolbox, which offers links to sites on the Internet where teachers can
find information on educational technology and other subjects. http://ericir.
• ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics
This is the home page of the ERIC Clearinghouse on Languages and Linguistics,
located at the Center for Applied Linguistics in W ashington, DC.
• Internet TESL Journal
This is a monthly web journal for ESL teachers. One can find many excellent
articles at this site related to diverse aspects of language teaching.
This is the home page of the professional international Teachers of English to
Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL) organization. The "Wandering the Web"
columns from TESOL Matters have been put online at this site. There are also
links to all of the TESOL affiliate home pages. http://www.tesol.edu
• ELT Weekly
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The site provides research papers related to the latest trends in teaching and other
relevant information to its members on a weekly basis. People from all over the
world contribute in this site and all the services are given free of cost.
A newer area of the internet to explore is online assessment. You can create your
own tests online through your own website. These require knowledge of internet;
so many new users might not be quite ready for this. And there are some concerns
that might hinder the effective use of internet in the classroom.
→ Time
Objection: Teachers hardly have enough time to do all that is expected of them as
it is. Where do we find the time to implement this into the curriculum without
'wasting time'?
Possible Solution: Teachers have to do what works for them. The internet, just like
any other technology, is a tool. Many times information can only be passed on
through books and lectures. However, if you feel that integrating the internet is
important, just try one project each year.
→ Cost and Available Equipment
Objection: School Districts do not always provide a large budget for technology.
Many schools don't have the necessary equipment. Some aren't connected to the
Possible Solution: If your school district is not supportive or unable to provide
technology, you can turn to corporate sponsors and grants. Sources of Grants. If
you would like information to help you write grants, read Grant Writing Tips.
→ Knowledge
Objection: Learning about new technology and the internet is confusing. You will
be teaching with something you may not completely understand.
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Possible Solution: Hopefully most districts have instituted an inservice plan to help
acclimate teachers to the web. Barring this, there are some online help sources.
→ Quality
Objection: Quality on the internet is not guaranteed. It is easy to run a biased and
inaccurate website with no regulation whatsoever.
Possible Solution: First, when you are thinking about having your students
research a topic, do a search to make sure the information is available. A lot of
time is wasted searching for obscure topics on the web. Second, review websites
either on your own or with your students. Here is a great site with information
about evaluating web resources.
→ Plagiarism
Objection: When students research off the web to produce a traditional research
paper, it is often difficult for teachers to tell if it is plagiarized. Not only that, but
students can BUY papers off the web.
Possible Solution: First, educate yourself. Find out what's available. Here are some
resources with which to start. Also, a solution that works well is oral defenses.
Students answer questions I pose and must be able to explain their findings. If
nothing else, they have to learn what they have stolen (or bought) off of the
→ Cheating
Objection: There is nothing stopping students from cheating with each other while
on the internet, especially if you are giving online assessments.
Possible Solution: First, cheating off of each other has always existed, but the
internet seems to make it easier. Many schools make the sending of emails and
instant messages against the school code because of possible abuses. Therefore, if
students are caught using these during an assessment, they would not only be
guilty of cheating but also of violating school rules.
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Second, if online assessments are given, watch students carefully because they
could switch back and forth between the test and web pages that might give them
→ Parental and Community Objections
Objection: The internet is full of items that most parents would rather keep away
from their children: pornography, foul language, and subversive information are
examples. Parents and community members might fear their children would be
able to access this information if given the opportunity to use the internet at school.
Also, if students' work is to be published on the internet, it might be necessary to
gain a parent's approval.
Possible Solution: Unlike public libraries, school libraries have the ability to
restrict what is viewed on the internet. Students caught accessing information that
is questionable can be subject to disciplinary action. Libraries would be wise to
make sure that computers with internet access are easily observable in order to
monitor student activity. Classrooms pose a different problem, however. If students
are using the internet, the teacher needs to check and make sure they are not
accessing questionable material. Fortunately, teachers can look at the 'history' of
what was accessed on the internet. If there is any question whether a student was
viewing something that was inappropriate, it is a simple matter to check the history
file and see which pages were viewed.
Despite the above mentioned benefits and various techniques, not everyone is
ready to board the Internet bandwagon. Some teachers have convinced themselves
that the Internet is a waste of precious time. Others harbor a certain curiosity and
would like to learn more about the possibilities but feel that they just cannot invest
the time to learn about what is available and keep up with frequent changes.
Surveys, however, have shown that fear is the main reason many teachers shy
away from the Internet and why they tend to ignore the computer revolution that is
rapidly spreading into all areas of daily life. One of the fears is a fear of technology
itself. Teachers from non-technical backgrounds are worried that they will not be
able to master the new technology. But ESL/EFL teachers all over the world are
amazing themselves by quickly learning the basic skills needed for computer30
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assisted language learning and are progressing rapidly beyond the basics. Another
fear that teachers have is that computers will replace them. It is true that computers
can now do many things that teachers can. Language learning is, however, a very
human experience and human teachers will always be needed in the classroom.
The computer revolution, however, seems irreversible. ESL/EFL teachers cannot
ignore the Internet. They must be aware of its potential and how their colleagues
are using it. Everyone must remember, however, that technology should never be
used just because it is there. Technology must be used only when it enhances the
language learning experience. If the computer offers students something that they
cannot obtain from an in-class communicative activity, then the use of technology
is appropriate. When the computer is simply a poor substitute, its use is not
acceptable. ESL/EFL teachers can make use of the two most popular features of
the Internet, electronic mail (e-mail) and the World Wide Web.
The Internet Guide for English Language Teachers by Dave Sperling,
Prentice-Hall Regents.
New Ways of Using Computers in Language Teaching, edited by Tim
Boswood, TESOL.
E-Mail for English Teaching: Bringing the Internet and Computer Learning
Networks into the Language Classroom by Mark Warschauer, TESOL.
Virtual Connections: Online Activities and Projects for Networking
Language Learners by Mark W arschauer, University of Hawai'i Press.
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