Strength for Today and Bright Hope for Tomorrow

Volume 10 : 5 May 2010
ISSN 1930-2940

Managing Editor: M. S. Thirumalai, Ph.D.
Editors: B. Mallikarjun, Ph.D.
         Sam Mohanlal, Ph.D.
         B. A. Sharada, Ph.D.
         A. R. Fatihi, Ph.D.
         Lakhan Gusain, Ph.D.
         K. Karunakaran, Ph.D.
         Jennifer Marie Bayer, Ph.D.
         S. M. Ravichandran, Ph.D.



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Teaching Beyond the Regular Curriculum

Rajesh Bojan, M.A., M.Phil.


This paper attempts to explore the importance of teaching beyond the regular curriculum with special emphasis on adopting communicative and cooperative learning strategies.

Learning a second language has become unavoidable particularly in the case of English. No matter to what speech community, to what society one belongs to, there is every chance that one may face English. In every walk of life we choose, whether education, business, travel, etc., it has become an essential requirement to learn English. The concept of learning English as the second language is not novel. Much work has been done. The complexity and challenge involved in teaching English as a second or foreign language has kept this field still active and interesting.

In spite of a long list of teaching approaches and methods, the innovations and improvements have not yet helped totally to overcome the difficulties in the acquisition of a second language. No doubt that every method, old or new, promotes second language learning to some extent. However, the problem lies with the fact that how well these approaches and methods are being utilized. It is also evident made clear that adhering to any one single method is insufficient to fulfill the requirements of every learner.

Importance of Practice

Language learning is like driving a vehicle, once the basic things are understood no more theory is necessary, for what is then needed is practice. Through proper practice one gains mastery and becomes an expert. The more one practices the better his performance. When learners have unlimited exposure to practically learn and use the target language it does more than what theoretical teaching could do. It does not matter how many hours we teach them, what really matters is that how much they are made to speak. It is only through their attempts and reattempts, their ability of communicating can be charged up.

Let Us Not Blame the Methods!

It is high time that we should stop blaming the language teaching methods since, it is clear that none of these methods has been disregarded. We would have made no where without the influence of one method over another. Every stage has been a key to move further and explore. These methods whether traditional or modern when used accordingly to the accurate purpose, appropriate situation and right audience they have never proved ineffective. Early Instructional methods like Grammar-Translation, Audio lingual are still being widely used today.

We are to blame both the teachers and learners for their lack of interest and effort particularly in Indian educational context. Some teachers are not even familiar about these language teaching methodologies, and those of whom who know little are not clear with the application of such theories. There are exceptionally few teachers who are trained to deal with such language difficulties in the language teaching classrooms.

Need to Re-focus

Moreover, in educational institutions in India teachers primarily devote their time for the completion of the curriculum rather than to worry about what they could do to develop the learners' communicative ability. The curriculum has no more than one or two subjects that are meant for language training (in some cases not even one). It is this inadequacy and the result of insufficient practice which has paved way for the learners' inability to attain the communicative competence in spite of years of formal education.

Teaching Beyond the Regular Curriculum

The field of second language teaching has experienced innumerable changes. Every suggestion, every incorporation, every modification, best or worst, has been successful in shaping the area to an acceptable level. Without these research findings, experiments and turning points it would have been impossible to reach the present state.

For the success of any course, a well designed curriculum is a must. Unless we possess a little understanding of things like learner levels and requirements, their expectations, learner difficulties, time length, objectives, authentic materials and methodologies, it is, indeed, difficult to design a suitable curriculum. In this way an effective curriculum takes several things into consideration. It depends on 'what is needed.' The curriculum has to be planned and designed.

This is only the beginning part of the article. PLEASE CLICK HERE TO READ THE ARTICLE IN PRINTER-FRIENDLY VERSION.

Interference of Mappila Dialect in the Standard Malayalam Language - with special reference to the writing performance of Primary School Children | Effect of Environmental Education to School Children Through Animation Based Educational Video | Women as Victors of the Social Milieu in Amy Tan's China | A Comparative Study of the Language Learning Strategies Used by the Students of Formal and Non-Formal Systems of Education in Pakistan | New Vistas in Comparative Studies | Comparative Analysis of MA English Results under Annual and Semester system: Quality Assurance in Pakistan | A Virtual Learning Environment in an ESL Classroom in a Technical University in India | When a School Becomes a Pool - What Can We Do to Make Language Learning Interesting to Yemeni Students | Does Number Affect English Pronunciation? | Shashi Tharoor: Transmuting Historical and Mythical Material into Literary Ideas | The Impact of Working Memory on Text Composition in Hearing Impaired Adults | A Study of the ELT Teachers' Perception of Teaching Language through Literature at the Higher Secondary School and Degree Levels in Pakistani Milieu | Some Aspects of Teaching-Learning English as a Second Language | Challenges Encountered by Teachers in Rural Areas and Strategies to Triumph Over | Variation of Voice Onset Time (VOT) in Kannada Language | A Comparative Study on the Efficacy of Two Different Clinical Language Intervention Procedures | Dilemma of Usage and Transmission - A Sociolinguistic Investigation of Dhundi-Pahari in Pakistan | Teaching Beyond the Regular Curriculum | Claustrophobia in Anita Desai's Cry, The Peacock - "From Defeat to Disaster" | Code Mixing and Code Switching in Tamil Proverbs | A Phonetic and Phonological Study of the Consonants of English and Arabic | HOME PAGE of May 2010 Issue | HOME PAGE | CONTACT EDITOR

Rajesh Bojan, M.A., M.Phil.
Department of English
Anna University
Coimbatore - 641 047
Tamilnadu, India

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