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Re: (teach) Mert's commandment

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  • fshdt
    You can use realia at a low level to introduce vocabulary but it s also useful at a higher level to bring the world into the classroom. Our current unit in
    Message 1 of 34 , Jan 31, 2007
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      You can use realia at a low level to introduce vocabulary but it's
      also useful at a higher level to bring the world into the classroom.

      Our current unit in North Star is quack medicine. I brought in two
      little bottles of TCM that a kind friend had given me, assuring me
      that it would cure my cancer. These pills from mushroom extracts are
      said to cure cancer, liver disease, asthma and most things. I passed
      them round and the students looked at the mushroom pictures on the
      label with approval. Then I pointed out the quite prominent wording on
      the label which they had missed - "No approved therapeutic effect".
      They were expensive, too, about $500 each and I was too embarrassed
      top tell my friend she'd been fooled.

      This bit of realia showed how people are fooled by quack cures in a
      way that the article in the book didn't, and promoted a lot of discussion.

      Another example is the exercise I learned long ago at a conference in
      Malaysia, designed to show trainee teachers that they can write
      poetry. You bring in fruit and give each group a fruit. The group
      have their eyes shut except for one who records as much as they can of
      what the group says. Each member holds the fruit and talks about its
      shape, feel and smell and then about the memories and feelings it
      brings them. After this they look at what they have said and the
      recorder has written and mark interesting words and ideas. From this
      they find a theme and write a group poem on a large sheet of paper
      which is displayed and read by their peers.

      You can see how essential the realia is here. This wouldn't work if
      you told a group to think about an orange.

      It's pretty obvious when you think about it. Language almost certainly
      developed in response to our environment and to remove a large part of
      that environment and then teach language in a grey classroom limits
      acquisition.

      Dick Tibbetts
    • fshdt
      ... I ve done limericks with 3rd year education students studying to be English teachers. It works but it is difficult. You really have to beat out the rhythm
      Message 34 of 34 , Feb 17, 2007
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        >
        > I'm also thinking of getting them to tackle a limerick. Think that's
        > possible?. Good juniors, can write 5-600 words easily, accurately.
        >
        > Dave Nevin
        >
        I've done limericks with 3rd year education students studying to be
        English teachers. It works but it is difficult. You really have to
        beat out the rhythm and mark it on sample limericks because the
        learners do not see how important stress time is and how it works.

        Dick Tibbetts
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