English Language Trainers

By Ashraf Al Shafaki

Old Method

The old method of delivering English language training relied more on dissecting language into separate components such as pronunciation, spelling and grammar. The trainer does not allow a trainee to make any language errors and instantly corrects any mistakes in grammar or pronunciation.

Underlying Principles

The old method assumes that the path to be followed for language learning is to train learners on a small part of the language till they reach perfection in it then go on training them on an addition portion of the language till they perfect it and so on. This contrasts sharply with the new method which immerses the learner into language gradually yet without necessarily aiming at perfecting small peace by small piece of the language but rather using larger portions without aiming at perfection then through practice trainees start gaining mastery of the language after passing through an imperfection stage.

Activities

  • Exercises for applying grammar

New Method

The new method of delivering English language training relies more on the ability to communicate with others using the English language. The trainer should focus on the ability of a trainee to communicate meaning to others rather than to strictly abide by language rules.

Underlying Principles

Unlike in the old method, one of the main underlying principles in the new model for language learning is that language mistakes made by learners are a normal transitional stage in the learning path and are a natural product of learning. This principle is based on the method by which children learn language. During the learning stages, a child may come up with erroneous grammatical structures, improper pronunciation and associate inaccurate or even altogether inappropriate meanings to words. Yet this is a normal stage of learning and the child progresses as he or she develops their language skills reaching proficiency in a short time without even being corrected by adults for every language mistake. That is the model used for teaching English according to the new method.

Activities

  • Role play
  • Presentations

Hybrid Method

The best current approach to English language training and language training in general is a hybrid method that combines elements from both the old and new language training methods with a focus on the new method. For instance, an English language trainer employing the hybrid method wold focus on using activities in class that exercise the communicative ability of learners such as role play and seminars while at the same time not completely neglecting elements from the old method such as listening and repetition cycles to improve the pronunciation skills of learners.

Tips

  • Use the whiteboard often to write down new words as you mention them. Seeing words and phrases on the whiteboard allows for an improved learning experience for visual learners as well as others.

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