Is it the way to teach language, the way we teach language

Topics: Teaching English as a foreign language, Language education, Language acquisition Pages: 11 (6418 words) Published: October 19, 2014
The Aga Khan University

Professional Development Centre, Chitral

Institute for Educational Development

March 2012

Is it the way to teach language the way we teach
language? English language teaching in rural
Ali Nawab
Aga Khan University, Professional Development Centre, Chitral

Follow this and additional works at: Recommended Citation
Nawab, A. (2012). Is it the way to teach language the way we teach language? English language teaching in rural Pakistan. Academic Research International, 2(2), 696-705.
Available at:

ISSN-L: 2223-9553, ISSN: 2223-9944

Academic Research International

Vol. 2, No. 2, March 2012

Ali Nawab
Aga Khan University,
Institute for Educational Development,
Professional Development Centre Chitral,

With the growing importance and need of English language in the global context, efforts are being made in the developing context to improve the quality of teaching English with the assumption that teaching of English facilitates the acquisition of English Language. What is Pakistani teachers approach to the teaching of English language and does the way they teach English facilitate the language acquisition? The current study explores this question at secondary level in the context of Chitral, a remote district of Khyber Pukhtunkhwa province Pakistan. The researcher visited the randomly selected secondary schools and consulted English teachers interviewing them and observing the teaching and learning processes. The study reveals that in the context of Chitral, teaching of English is not different from teaching of other subjects such as social studies, history etc. Translation method is the dominant way to teach English and learners hardly get any opportunity to practice language skills in the classrooms. The reasons behind this approach to the teaching of English are; lack of purposefully trained teachers, non-availability of in-service courses for secondary level English teachers, memory driven exam system, overcrowded classrooms, teachers’ work load, shortage of resources and lack of ongoing support system. The study suggests that English teachers should be trained separately focusing teaching English as a language unlike other subjects.

Keywords: Language Skills, Rural Pakistan, Secondary Level, Teaching of English

The growing need and importance of English language at the present day has made the acquisition of this language as an important requirement for today’s student. As English is perceived as an indispensable tool in order to survive in the global economy, the demands for English language have grown (Paik, 2008). Despite the importance and need of English language, it has generally been observed in the developing context especially in context of Pakistan that students having strong language competencies easily get entry into higher institutions while such entry is denied to those who have poor background in English language. The importance of English language is even more intense at secondary level as this transitional stage prepares learners either to be an earning member for the family through joining various trades or enter higher institutions with sound background. As Jimenez and Rose (2010) believe, “Without a sustained and systematic effort, students in the process of learning English have almost no hope of acquiring the kinds and amounts of cultural, social, and academic capital that they need to moveinto higher education ormeaningful work” (p.411). As a result, English language has been a means of either success or failure. Support for this interpretation comes from Zeegers(2005) who argues that it is the language which facilitates all other learning and all learning failure is...

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