Reading Comprehension

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Look at the following situations and decide if you would correct or not. If so, say when you would do so. Explain your answer.

1. Students are writing a paragraph about a holiday in ones or twos. Teachers would not correct the written work while activity is in progress. Written corrective feedback will take place when they have handed out the paper. 2. Students are discussing the question of pollution in small groups. Teachers should correct students when the activity is over. Teachers can go around monitoring and taking down notes on common mistakes that students make. During the correction session teachers present them so that all students can benefit from an analysis of the mistakes. 3. Students are debating on the rights of women in an open class focus. Teachers would not correct students in this activity. This would block the development of communication and would limit the student’s participation. It would be better to ignore the errors and wait for the students to complete their contributions. 4. Students are discussing role-playing a public meeting after reading a text, and are preparing their side of the argument. A corrective approach during the speaking process is not appropriate because it would impede the development of the communicative competence. 5. Students are giving the answer to a listening comprehension exercise in class feedback. Teachers should correct the students by giving them clues about key points to encourage them get the right answer or ask students who have the right answer to explain how they got it. 6. Students are checking a grammar exercise in open class. During grammar study sessions, correcting mistakes is necessary to clarify the language in the student’s minds, but being careful on not to make students feel upset and dent their confidence. Teacher’s job is to point out when something has gone wrong and see if the students can correct themselves. If they can’t, we have to help them. 7. Students are giving the teacher examples of the target structure ‘used to’ and the teacher is writing these examples on the board. All examples should be written on the board and then analyzed in small groups in order to identify the problem and put it in the right way. Finally, teachers ask the students to give their responses and make the corrections on the board. TASK 4

Below is a list of classroom ‘procedures’ (activity types) which will, in theory, allow for individualisation in the language classroom. To what extent does each cater for individualised learning? What advantages and what drawbacks can you identify with each ‘procedure’ if you were to use them with your own classes? (Ur, 1996:236) Explain your answers 1. Readers. Students choose individual simplified readers, of varied level and topic, from a school library, and read quietly in class. Individualized learning takes place since students get to pick their own topic and read individually internalizing knowledge independently. Advantage: students receive motivation by choosing what they want to read. Drawback: it is not a style of innate learning. 2. Response to listening. The teacher plays a recorded text on a topical issue, and asks the class to note down points they understood. The individualized learning strategies are used by each student according to their own listening skills strengths. Advantage: students are able to work in a more autonomous way by discovering why she/he has understood some points and not others. Drawback: it could turn out to be a memory challenge rather than a listening task. 3. Workcards. A pile of workcards prepared by the teacher is put in the centre of the class, all practicing the material the class has recently learned, but each different. Each student chooses one, completes it and then takes another. Individualized learning takes place because each student answers the workcard according to his/her knowledge, although the whole process needs teacher preparation and monitoring. 4. Textbook...
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