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Teaching methodology and Lesson planning

A method is a way of teaching, the task of methodology is to enhance the process of teaching English by
empowering and facilitating teachers to work proficiently. Teaching involves a continuous analysis of
one’s own work, the experiences of other teachers and the search for new means to improve teaching.
When teaching a foreign language, a teacher must think about the specific qualities and characteristics of
students. That means that the methodology of teaching English have to take into account the problems
posed by the English language for the students who will learn it. The methodology of teaching English
stands in relation with the believes of the teacher about what language is, how people learn, how teaching
helps people learn and based on such believes, the teacher will then make methodological decisions about
the aims of a course, what to teach, teaching techniques, activity types, ways of relating with students and
ways to assessing.
Some well-known methods and approaches include:

The Grammar-Translation-Method
Much traditional language teaching in schools worldwide used to be done in this way, and it is still the
predominant classroom method in some cultures. The teacher rarely uses the target language. Students
spend a lot of time reading text, translating them, doing exercises and tests, writing essays. There is
relatively little focus on speaking and listening skills.

The Audio-Lingual Method

Although based on largely discredited theory, the techniques and activities continue to have a strong
influence over many classrooms. It aims to form good habits trough students listening to model dialogues
with repetition and drilling but with little or no teacher explanation.

Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) or Communicative Approach (CA)

This is perhaps the method or approach that most contemporary teachers would subscribe to, despite the
fact that is widely misunderstood and misapplied. CLT is based on beliefs that learners will learn best if
they participate in meaningful communication. It may help if we distinguish between a stronger and a
weaker version of CLT. With strong CLT students learn by communicating, ie doing practice exercises.
In contrast, with weak CLT students learn through a wide variety of teaching, exercises, activities and
study, with a bias towards speaking and listening work. Most current course books reflect a version of
weak CLT.

Total Physical Response (TPR)

It is a method devised by Dr. J. Asher, mainly useful with beginner and lower-level students. Learners
listen to instructions from the teacher, understand and do things in response, without being required to
speak until they are ready.

Community Language Learning (CLL)

A method based around the use of the learners ‘first language and with teacher help in mediating. It aims
to lower anxiety and allows students to communicate in a more genuine way than is typically possible in

The natural approach

Devised by Stephen Krashen, this is a collection of methods and techniques from many sources, all
intended to provide the learner with natural comprehensible language so that the learner can pick up
language in ways similar to a child learning their first language.

Task -Based learning (TBL)

A variant of CLT which bases work cycles around the preparation for, doing of, and reflective analysis of
task that reflect real-life needs and skills.

The Silent Way

Devised by Caleb Gattegno, this method requires the learner to take active ownership of their language
learning and to pay great attention to what they say. Distinctive features include the relative restraint of
the teacher (who is not completely silent) and the use of specially designed wallcharts.

Person-centred approaches
Any approach that places learners and their needs at th heart of what is done. Syllabus and working
methods will not be decided by the teacher in advance of the course, but agreed between learner and

Lexical approaches
Proposed by Michael Lewis and Jimmie Hill. On the back of new discoveries about how language is really
used, especially the importance of lexical chunks in communication, proponents suggest that traditional
present-then-practice methods are of little use and propose a methodology based around exposure and

Scott Thornbury¨s proposed back-to-basics approach. Teachers aim to strip their craft of unnecessary
technology, materials and aids and get back to the fundamental relationship and interaction of teacher and
student in class.

Some schools (or individual teachers) follow one of these named methods or approaches. In a naming a
method, a school suggest that all (or most) work will fit a clearly stated, recognizable and principled way
of working. Other school sometimes advertise a unique named method of their own, eg. The Cambridge
Method. These are usually variations on some of the methods listed above, or not a method at all but
something else, eg, simply the name of the course book series being used, a way of dividing levels
according to a familiar exam system, or an eclectic contemporary lucky dip.
Lesson planning

There are many ways to approach the planning of lesson. Lesson planning is at the heart of being an
effective teacher. It is a creative process that allows us to synthesize our understanding of second language
acquisition and language teaching pedagogy with our knowledge of our learners, the curriculum, and the
teaching context.
There are a number of benefits to writing a lesson plan. First, lesson planning produces more unified
lessons ( Jensen, 2001). It gives teachers the opportunity to think deliberately about their choice of lesson
objectives, the types of activities that will meet these objectives, the sequence of those activities, the
materials needed, how long each activity might take, and how students should be grouped. Teachers can
reflect on the links between one activity and the next, the relationship between the current lesson and any
past or future lessons, and the correlation between learning activities and assessment practices. Because
the teacher has considered these connections and can now make the connections explicit to learners, the
lesson will be more meaningful to them.

Components of a Lesson Plan

A lesson plan identifies the enabling objectives necessary to meet the lesson objective, the materials and
equipment needed, and the activities appropriate to accomplish the objective.

. • Enabling objectives are the basic skills (language skills such as vocabulary, grammar, and
pronunciation) and the life skills (including cultural information) that are necessary to accomplish the

• Materials and equipment should be identified and secured well before class time to ensure that activities
can be carried out as planned. These may include realia (real life materials like bus schedules and
children’s report cards), visual aids, teacher made handouts, textbooks, flip chart and markers, overhead
projector, tape recorder, etc.

• Activities generally move from more controlled (e.g., repetition) to a less structured or free format (e.g.,
interviewing each other). They should be varied in type (e.g., whole group, paired, individual) and
modality (e.g., speaking, listening, writing). a.

Stages of a Lesson
Good lesson design begins with a review of previously learned material. New material is then introduced,
followed by opportunities for learners to practice and be evaluated on what they are learning. In general,
a lesson is composed of the following stages:

• Warm-up/Review—encourages learners to use what they have been taught in previous lessons
• Introduction to a new lesson—focuses the learners’ attention on the objective of the new lesson and
relates the objective to their lives.
• Presentation—introduces new information, checks learner comprehension of the new material, and
models the tasks that the learners will do in the practice stage

• Practice—provides opportunities to practice and apply the new language or information

• Evaluation—enables the instructor and learners to assess how well they have grasped the lesson


Concerning teaching methods, I believe that a variety of approaches makes up the most successful practice, it assists
to maintain the whole attention of the students present in class, it encourages them and offers an attractive
atmosphere and diminishes anxiety, shyness, etc. In the end I would like to add the following fact: not all students
share the same desire for studying a foreign language and it is sometimes a bit too hard for a teacher to teach a class
even if he/she is very enthusiastic when teaching the lesson. It has happened to me, it has happened to others. As
there are many kinds of students and each of them have their own character and learning rhythms and styles it is
not easy to keep everyone’s attention. Some students might assimilate the information at once; others cannot do
that, though. The learning style that fits one student doesn’t fit another one. Also, only a few students are more
willing to participate in class while most are passive participants. I have learned all these along the many years of
teaching. I now realize that the best thing to do in class with my students is not to ask them for rote memorization
but to always look for new methods that have more significant tasks, which are suggestive and informative. Above
all, a grain of patience and humor is needed every time I go to teach a class.

Ayres, J. (2014). Lesson planning. Outcomes and responsibilities in planning

Center of applied linguistics. (s/f). Lesson planning. Taken from:


Scrivener, J. (2011). Learning Teaching. The essential guide to English language teaching. Taken from:

TESOL. (s/f). The importance of planning. Taken from: http://www.tesol.org/docs/default-