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Dissolving Boundaries: Creative Activities in a communicative classroom
Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science.
Halmstad University, School of Education, Humanities and Social Science, Research on Education and Learning within the Department of Teacher Education (FULL).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2924-4100
2015 (English)Conference paper, Abstract (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

For a good four decades, a communicative approach has been promoted as an effective way of teaching English to Speakers of Other Languages (TESOL). In short, in a communicative classroom, learners engage in a range of interactive and creative tasks that not only encourage practice with language systems, language learning skills, and subject specific content, but which also encourage use of the whole body, and the whole classroom space with the incorporation of arts-based elements of music, poetry, drama, art etc.

Despite the Swedish national curriculum for English also promoting a communicative approach, and despite much good practice, an analysis of trainee teacher narratives detailing personal experiences of learning English reveals that it is still not uncommon for English lessons in Swedish schools (at all levels) to be constructed in a way best described as “a painting-by-numbers” approach. The narratives depict classroom environments where learners sit in rows and work chronologically through a textbook guided by teacher instruction (often in Swedish) to turn to a specific page, read the text silently/aloud, and to write down the answers to any accompanying exercises. Typical homework exercises require the learning of a glossary of ten unconnected words for a future test.

Thus, an aim of our teacher training programme is to encourage the adoption of a communicative approach. In doing so, an interesting phenomena has occurred in which the students consider the course in English as “more aesthetic” than courses where drama, music and dance etc. exist as independent subjects. This has given rise to a research project which explores the dissolving of boundaries between English and the Arts in Teacher Education.

In this workshop, participants will experience how new life can be breathed into a chapter from any language text book/written or spoken text by lifting the content off the page and transforming it into a cohesive lesson complete with dynamic and integrated activities of a creative and communicative nature. 

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Jönköping: Högskolan i Jönköping , 2015. 6-6 p.
National Category
Educational Sciences
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-27857OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hh-27857DiVA: diva2:789144
Conference
Praktiska och estetiska lärprocesser i skola och högre utbildning, 22-23 april 2015, Högskolan i Jönköping, Jönköping, Sverige
Available from: 2015-02-17 Created: 2015-02-17 Last updated: 2015-07-01Bibliographically approved

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CiteExportLink to record
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Citation style
  • apa
  • ieee
  • modern-language-association-8th-edition
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More styles
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