Attitudes of Pupils to Tv Show Based Vocabulary Teaching in Efl Classes

Topics: Language education, Second language acquisition, Language acquisition Pages: 8 (2400 words) Published: January 8, 2011
Attitudes of Pupils to TV Show Based Vocabulary Teaching in EFL Classes


International School of Sarajevo, Sarajevo, Bosnia 

Abstract: This paper argues how current popular TV Shows can increase motivation and help the pupils learn vocabulary in a fast and an effective way. They can serve as great time savers and more memorable activities for the benefit of them. The use of vocabulary in a meaningful context adds up to its invaluable outcome in terms of student participation and attitudes towards the lessons. Moreover, an ELT teacher may construct his/her own teaching material out of these shows and plans the vocabulary teaching lessons according to the needs of the pupils. It is also believed that all of the pupils would like to have and enjoy these shows as their vocabulary lessons regardless of their gender. Seven sample lessons taken from a comedy show called "My Name is Earl" are used in the study to illustrate the case. The study was applied to 50 students in International School of Sarajevo.


The use of technology, specifically multimedia, for foreign language instruction has expanded rapidly in the world especially during the last few decades. Studies of the effect of technology-enhanced instruction on achievement and studies of student attitudes regarding learning with technology have also increasingly been reported. Moreover, a student's attitude and motivation has frequently been reported to be the most critical factor for success within computer-assisted language learning environments (Brandl, 2002; Desmarais, 2002; Doherty, 2002; Gilbert, 2001; Murday & Ushida, 2002; Warschauer, 1996a, 1996b). Motivation, according to Winne and Marx (1989), is both a condition for, and a result of, effective instruction. Hence, it is plausible to speculate that students' motivation plays an important role in successful CALL implementation and that, if used effectively, the CALL environment can enhance students' motivation to learn a second language (L2). Thus, especially in the recent years, language teachers have made use of different videos to enhance teaching vocabulary in their classroom settings. Traditionally, two main uses of video have been distinguished: instructional video, specifically created to teach foreign languages, and authentic video materials, such as films, TV series, commercials, etc., originally created for native speakers of the language. The great value of these video comes from its combination of sounds, images, and sometimes text (as subtitles), together with the socio-cultural information about habits, traditions, culture, etc. All this makes it a very comprehensible tool for teaching vocabulary to foreign language students. Based on these, this study investigated the role of TV Shows on student L2 vocabulary learning and how this, in turn, affected students' attitudes. The present study reports data from an investigation of the attitudes of students’ own vocabulary learning, based on the TV show called My Name is Earl. It also sought to determine whether students have positive or negative attitudes towards the use of TV Shows while studying vocabulary. A comparison was also made between the scores of the male and female participants.

L2 Vocabulary Acquisition

There is considerable evidence that L1 learners acquire a large amount of their vocabulary through guessing from context (Sternberg, 1987). The frequency at which the L1 learner encounters words, and the variety of contexts in which words are encountered, ensure that the learner will eventually come across most new words in a context where the word is guessable. It is suggested however that foreign language students do not undergo the same rich and varied exposure to vocabulary (Singleton, 1999). As a result, although EFL students quickly learn many of the high frequency words that occur in teaching materials, they experience a breakdown in their ability to guess from...

References: My Name Is Earl Season 1 DVD (2005) created by Greg Garcia, NBC television Network
Danan, M. (1992) Reversed subtitling and dual coding theory: New directions for foreign language instruction. Language Learning, 42, 497-527.
Eiko Ushida, “The Role of Students’ Attitudes and Motivation in Second Language Learning in Online Language Courses” University of California, San Diego Calico Journal, Vol 23, No. 1 (September 2005)
Ghadirin, S. (2001) Providing controlled exposure to target vocabulary through the screening and arranging of texts. Language Learning and Technology, 6(1): 147-164.
J. Stepp-Greany, “Student Perceptions on Language Learning in a Technological Environment: Implications for the New Millennium” Language Learning & Technology, Vol. 6, No.1, pp. 165-180, January 2002.
Krashen, S. D. (1987). Principles and practice in second language acquisition. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.
Singleton D. (1999) Exploring the second language mental lexicon . Cambridge : Cambridge University Press.
Sternberg, R.J. (1987). Most vocabulary is learned from context. In M.G. McKeown & M.E. Curtis (Eds.), The nature of vocabulary acquisition (pp. 89-105). Hillsdale, NJ: Erlbaum.
Winne, P. H. & Marx, R. W. (1989). A cognitive processing analysis of motivation within classroom
tasks. In C. Ames & R. Ames (Eds. ),Research on motivation in education (Vol. 3, pp. 223-257). Orlando, FL: Academic Press.
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