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English Classroom Activities in Saudi Arabia Proposal

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First Activity: Lecture Materials:

Lecture Topic: Understand Language Learning Strategies for EFL Learners (60 minutes)

Learning Objectives

A student will be able to:

  • Understand different language learning strategies;
  • Assess learning strategies in the context of cognitive theories, as well as appropriate models of foreign language acquisition;
  • Understand the concept of learners’ autonomy
  • Integrate instructed foreign language learning into second language acquisition;
  • Develop cooperation and recycling vocabulary;

The teacher’s mission is to:

  • To present information about the leading theories that will help students understand the importance of developing language learning strategies;
  • Evaluate the level of students’ readiness to accept the new information;
  • Draw student’s attention to the important issues of the subject;
  • Find out strategies for checking students performance;

Areas Reflected for Learner Choice and Decision-Making

To improve learners’ autonomy, it is highly necessary to understand students’ attitudes concerning their language learning experiences. At this point, it is purposeful for a teacher to conduct a set of interviews that will seek to define student’s decision-making processes in EFL learning, reflect students’ attitudes and perceptions regarding the current and previous language learning strategies. During the interview, the teacher should be able to adequately evaluate the difficulties and challenges that each student faces while developing a set of learning strategies. More importantly, the role of the teacher is also confined to monitoring the students’ feedback on developing learners’ autonomy.

Description of the Activities and Justification

During this activity, the teacher should provide information about the leading strategies for memory training, as well as define the main aspects of successful communication and cooperation. It is also highly important to engage students in discussion and find out which strategy they use to improve their language and learn vocabulary.

Instructors should make use of Power-Point presentation representing the main points of the theoretical material, using various charts, graphs, and images. These materials would encourage the active participation of EFL students in discussion. As per the structure, the first 15 minutes should be dedicated to interrogation and brain-warming activities. For the next 30 minutes, the instructor should give explanations to the main theoretical and practical issues. Finally, the remaining quarter of an hour will be spent on revising what learners have understood after the materials have been introduced.

Available Resources

Textbooks

Takac, V. P. (2008). Vocabulary Learning Strategies and Foreign Language Acquisition. US: Multilingual Matters.

Vocabulary learning approaches are highly important for EFL learners who can have difficulties that premise on socio-cultural differences. The textbook identifies the role of the teacher in shaping vocabulary learning techniques that can allow EFL students to realize the importance of the contextual environment.

Hurd, S., & Lewis, T. (2008). Language Learning Strategies in Independent Setting. US: Multilingual Matters.

The textbook is a valuable resource for understanding what theoretical frameworks are involved in understanding the main aspects of learner autonomy. Specifically, the authors put forward the social-constructivist theory, according to which self-regulation is represented through three phases: social speech, egocentric speech, and inner speech. This structure should be implemented while straining the autonomy of EFL students in Saudi Arabia.

Lamb, T. E., & Reinders, H. (2008). Learner and Teacher Autonomy: Concept, Realities, and Responses. US: John Benjamins Publishing.

Koch, A. (2008). What Are Language Learning Strategies and How Can They Contribute to Better Learning. US: GRIN Verlag.

Sung, Ko-Yin. (2009). Language Learning Strategy Use and Language Achievement for American College Learners of Chinese as a Foreign Language. US: ProQuest.

O’Rourke, B., & Carson, L. (2010). Language Learner Autonomy: Policy, Curriculum, Classroom. US: Peter Lang.

Felicity, K., Peter, V., Naoko, A., & Yoshiyuki, N. (2009). Mapping the Terrain of Learner Autonomy: Learner Environment, Learning Communities, and Identities. US: University of Tampere.

Journal article

Alhaisioni, E., (2012). Language Learning Strategic Use of Saudi EFL Students in an Intensive English Learning Context. Asian Social Science, 8(13), 113-127.

The article provides a valuable theoretical framework that outlines future directions in learners’ training in the Saudi Arabian context. The article also provides the classification of students with different proficiency levels, as well as how each group employs strategies.

Role of Teachers and Learners in the Activity

While delivering a lecture, the major responsibility is imposed on the teacher’s ability to highlight the main points in the available resources, as well as grasp the learner’s attention to the main learning objectives. Furthermore, the instructors should also make sure that the materials they are delivering are easy to grasp for all the students. Specifically, introducing a center-oriented approach is preferable in this situation. While asking a question to separate students, the teachers should pay attention to the less attentive and passive students.

Method of Assessment

To define the degree of students’ comprehension of the lecture materials, it is possible to work out a questionnaire with multiple-choice questions that could be handed out at the end of the lecture or at the beginning of the practical assignment. In such a manner, the teacher could also understand the level of students’ participation in discussion, as well as their attitudes to learning and listening. Additionally, the task of the teacher is to verify the psychological and emotional responses of learners to the lecture structure and context to define whether they have been engaged in lecture discussion

Opportunities for Reflection

Students should think over new strategies for second language acquisition concerning cultural and social context. They should also develop sufficient communication skills for managing the learning process independently. Additionally, reflection should be strongly associated with the inner speech, which in turn requires self-honesty, attentiveness, and quietness of mind.

Developing Learner Autonomy through Developing New Vocabulary Learning Strategies (120 minutes)

Learning Objectives

  • Understanding vocabulary learning strategies (interacting with peers and self-monitoring);
  • Ability to check and correct home assignments independently;
  • Ability to work out questionnaires and tests for evaluating performance;
  • Developing speaking and listening.

Areas Reflected for Learner Choice and Decision-Making

Students should make use of their critical thinking and creative thinking skills to be able to learn a new vocabulary.

Description of the Activities and Justification

The activity will be split into three parts. The first part will be a discussion of the major concepts learned during the lecture. The brain warming activity will involve a game in which one student should ask a question related to the topic to another student and determine whether the letter answers correctly. The role of the teacher is to check that both students make the right statements. This activity will take no more than 20 minutes.

Introduction to the New Vocabulary. The second phase will be working with online tests during which ESL learners will be acquainted with the new words. For instance, a student can take an online test to learn more about the vocabulary related to movies (http://a4esl.org/q/f/x/xz73mmn.htm). The test will take no more than 5-7 minutes. After the test, the teacher should discuss with the students the words they do not know and the ones they have already been familiar with.

Presentation

The teacher can write down several expressions on the blackboard. Similar expressions should be handed out to students. The workout could look as it is presented in Appendix 1. When students are familiar with the phrases, they can work in pairs to develop a dialogue about their favorite movies. They should spend no more than 15 minutes composing their dialogues and presents them to the audience. The process of presenting dialogues will take 35 minutes.

Revision (50 minutes)

Students should internet for research phrases online and presenting them to their peers and their teachers.

Available Resources

Journal Articles

Al-Asmari, A. M. (2005). Use of the Internet among EFL Teachers at the Colleges of Technology in Saudi Arabia. ETD. Web.

Alyousef, H. S. (2005). Teaching Reading Comprehension to ESL/EFL Learners. The Reading Matrix. 5(2), 143-154.

Internet Resources

The Internet TESL Journal. (2005). Web.

The online activities could serve as the basis for compiling a set of exercises that presuppose spelling comprehension activities, as well as communication with peers. As an example, it is possible to use the last assignment called “What’s the Meaning” for introducing group activities.

(2012). Web.

The online source provides a great variety of activities and exercises for a teacher to select the most appropriate one. Specifically, the site contains the vocabulary quizzes section that leads to various online links, which in turn offer different assignments on vocabulary.

Role of Teachers and Learners in the Activity

Apart from internet resources, teachers should make sure that all students have sufficient technical skills to work with computers. They should also be able to work with PowerPoint Presentations and other types of documents to present their written assignments. Additionally, while introducing a PowerPoint presentation, it is also necessary for the student to have sufficient speaking and communication skills to draw the audience’s attention.

Method of Assessment

The teacher’s evaluation of the students’ skills will start from the first multiple-choice test with the help of which he/she can define EFL learners’ background. Further assessment will be developed as soon as the teacher starts listening to the composed dialogues. Research skills will also be assessed after the lesson.

Opportunities for Reflection

Teachers should make sure that the setting in which the activities take place is well-equipped for conducting the activities.

Constraints that an EFL Teacher Might Face in terms of facilities availability, educational policy in Saudi Arabia

While conducting the activities, the use of a computer is important and, therefore, the Computer Laboratory will be the perfect place for students to learn. Using online resources and libraries will allow students to sophisticate their research skills. The Computer Lab is also necessarily conducting the above-presented activities. Finally, students can pursue my presentation on their monitors, which will facilitate their understanding of the material.

As per educational policies in Saudi Arabia, specific attention should be given to information and communications technology that has recently been introduced to higher education. To successfully embrace the changes, teachers should also take on the training course to obtain a qualification in the successful operation of technology and equipment. Besides, the role of the teacher is to enhance students’ integration into the use of technology. The proposed activities also premise on the ICT application and, therefore, it is highly important to teach learners to successfully use the information technologies and enhance their experiences and skills. Information technologies are especially beneficial for conducting classes in groups whose number exceeds 40 students. Instant messaging online increases the success of communication and, therefore, using ICT can solve the problem.

References

(2012). Web.

Al-Asmari, A. M. (2005). Use of the Internet among EFL Teachers at the Colleges of Technology in Saudi Arabia. ETD. Web.

Alhaisioni, E., (2012). Language Learning Strategic Use of Saudi EFL Students in an Intensive English Learning Context. Asian Social Science, 8(13), 113-127.

Alyousef, H. S. (2005). Teaching Reading Comprehension to ESL/EFL Learners. The Reading Matrix. 5(2), 143-154.

Felicity, K., Peter, V., Naoko, A., & Yoshiyuki, N. (2009). Mapping the Terrain of Learner Autonomy: Learner Environment, Learning Communities and Identities. US: University of Tampere.

Hurd, S., & Lewis, T. (2008). Language Learning Strategies in Independent Setting. US: Multilingual Matters.

Koch, A. (2008). What Are Language Learning Strategies and How Can They Contribute to Better Learning. US: GRIN Verlag.

Lamb, T. E., & Reinders, H. (2008). Learner and Teacher Autonomy: Concept, Realities, and Responses. US: John Benjamins Publishing.

O’Rourke, B., & Carson, L. (2010). Language Learner Autonomy: Policy, Curriculum, Classroom. US: Peter Lang.

Sung, Ko-Yin. (2009). Language Learning Strategy Use and Language Achievement for American College Learners of Chinese as a Foreign Language. US: ProQuest.

Takac, V. P. (2008). Vocabulary Learning Strategies and Foreign Language Acquisition. US: Multilingual Matters.

The Internet TESL Journal. (2005). Web.

Appendix 1: At the Movies

Elements of A Movie Important Language Examples Title of a movie
Genre:
What genre does this movie belong to?
It’s a horror movie. It is science fiction. It is a drama. The movie is a romantic comedy. …that is a drama?
….that is a thriller?
Actors/Stars
Who is staring in this movie?
Brad Pitt is in it.
Jennifer Lopez and Cameron Diaz are in it.
…with Julia Roberts in it?
…that is starring Orlando Bloom?
Setting/Background
Where does the movie take place?
When does the film take place?
The movie is set in Chicago in the 30s.
The movie takes place on another planet in the future.
…that is set in a prison?
…that takes place in France?
Plot/Story
What is the movie about?
The film is about a little boy who takes an imaginary trip to the Moon. …about corrupted police department?
…about two young people who escape from the town?
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