A GNA Feature by Joachim Akagre (GNA Stringer)
Bolgatanga, Dec. 11, GNA - The theme for the Ninth Annual National Conference of the Ghana Association of Teachers of English (GATE) held in Bolgatanga recently was "Effective Teaching and Learning of English in Ghanaian Schools: New Dimensions, New Challenges, New Focus". Teaching has been defined as 'a series of interactions between someone in the role of a teacher, and someone in the role of a learner, with the main purpose of influencing the learner's intellectual, emotional and motor behaviour. In short, it is a process that facilitates learning.
Learning on the other hand is said to have taken place when there is a change in behaviour and attitude on the part of the educated. The teacher is the cog around which the wheel of teaching and learning revolves. The English teacher can, therefore, be said to be the cog around which the wheel of teaching and learning of the English Language revolves.
The English Language is the medium of instruction in Ghanaian schools and to quote Father Ntim on the language debate: "If others are now paying huge sums of money to learn the English Language what reason have we to reject it as our official and business language". This writer is of the opinion that: "We need to learn English and learn to write and speak it well. We need to make all efforts to maintain the good standard of English that Ghanaians are noted for, at least within English-speaking African countries".
Father Ntim argues that as a result of the growing process of globalization in which the world is becoming so small in business, commerce and economics, it pays to be able to speak and write good English.
The Ghana Association of Teachers of English (GATE) shares the same sentiments as there can be no quality education nor can high standard of education be maintained without a corresponding competence in the English Language among students.