Friday, March 25, 2011

ESL Blog post by Tripti Srivastava

Blog Name: " Nik's Daily English Activities"

Blog address:

This blog is created by Mr. Nik Peachey, meant for autonomous EFL/ESL learners. It contains simple online activities that we can do each day to improve our English & digital literacy.
                             The main features of this ESL blogs are:-
·         ESL Jobs posted by schools 7 recruiters worldwide.
·         120+ activities under the column, find more activities.
·         Activities tags such as accent, audio, body language, communication & many more for daily practice.
·         We can subscribe and get new activities by email.
·         Visit many other website related to ESL of the owner  under My Other Websites column.
·         Related links for teachers to enhance their course book with new digital materials.
·         On line training workshop for teachers.
·         Teachers can get online lesson plans.

Usefulness for teachers & learners:

This website is useful for teachers as well as students. Teachers can find new activity link so that they can create image books, flicker montage, picture phrases etc. They can get online training workshop, so that can enhance their course book with digital material, Web2.0 tools for teachers is introduced for teachers, social networking & community building, language exchanged online, Interactive white boards, collaborative online writing etc.

                     For learners, there are various online activities followed by varied tasks such as online vocabulary games for learning unknown new vocabulary, audio clips to learn different accents, Atlas links through which they can find audio clips from any desired region from the world, Instructional Video for understanding people's body language, Video task for practicing common interview question and many more digital task and activities according to the need of new generation and for every possible aspect & use of English language in modern era.

                                                                                                        Tripti Srivastava

Rapid Acquisition of Competence in English : The kerala experience

Dr.Bose N.Vasudevan
Institute of Language Teaching,Jamnagar.
Rapid  Acquisition of Competence in English(RACE) :The Kerala Experience.
Is Communicative Approach a sophisticated extension of the behavioural model of teaching? CLT has its critics. For example, an early critic of the approach, Michael  Swan (1985), pooh-poohed the approach brilliantly in a pair of academic essays . His critique seems to be aimed at early dogmatic, almost evangelical writings on CLT. One of Swan’s  criticisms  is that “language learners already know, in general, how to negotiate meaning. They have been doing it all their lives. What they do not know is what words are used to do it in a foreign language. They need lexical items, not skills”. CLT has problems both at conceptual level and the operational level. The problem at the conceptual level is that it does not seem to account for the concept of language. It tends to explain the form of language by attributing a functional role to it namely, communication and fails to account for the phenomenon of language (Anandan,2006).  Chomsky (1979) believes that language can be used to transmit information, but it also serves many other purposes: clarify, for play, for creative mental activity, to gain understanding, and so on…language serves essentially for the expression of thought”.                       
Ted power (2003) argues that the principles of Communicative Approach are only superficially and trivially true. They are as true as statements like “When people speak, they use words”. Dr Anandan (2006) believes that the course books and source books that are presented by the proponents of CLT characteristically tend to ignore the insights that are available from the various research programmes that are being carried out in the fields of modern theoretical linguistics, cognitive psychology and neurology. With these reviews and criticisms of Communicative Approach Dr.K.N.Anandan proposes a Cognitive Interactionist Approach to language teaching which is heavily depending on the principles of Chomsky’s Universal Grammar.
Second Language Acquisition Porogramme (SLAP)
A number of UG (Universal Grammar) based teaching methods for second language teaching was developed by Dr.K.N.Anandan for Kerala schools; the first one was Second Language Acquisition Programme (SLAP) which was as Dr.Anandan claims an improvement on the traditional CLT programmes. The theoretical framework of SLAP is based on Chomsky’s theory of innateness, Vygotsky’s notion of knowledge construction,  Humanistic perspective on Education and the norms of Experimental Pedagogy(Anandan 2006).The salient features of SLAP are Concept Mapping, My own rhymes, Channelizing thoughts, Discourse-Theme Spiraling and Recurrence, Need based Expansion of vocabulary, The Evolving Textbook(ETB), Thematic linking of ETB pages, processing a poem, processing a narrative, Organic reading and writing and student assessment.
This programme was initially launched in sixty select schools for a year and it was found that children brought under SLAP were able to perform all the language skills better than those students in the main stream. A study conducted by Anita Rampal for UNICEF observed that “the results have been very heartening, that the programme, even in a short period, has been able to reorient teachers sufficiently well and has visibly helped children acquire basic skills in English”.
Rapid Acquisition of Competence in English (RACE)
This programme is an improvement on SLAP which has made use of discourse-oriented pedagogy. RACE is an interactive multimedia programme conducted by Dr.K.N.Anandan for the teenagers to help them produce a variety of discourses such as conversation, poem, diary, report, and narrative.
RACE is built upon a story which will have a tremendous effect on Adolescent learners. It has two complementary parts:
1.       Visual-CD
·         Certain parts of the story are given as a serial.
·         The Screen Facilitator narrates a few other events.
2.       Printed Material (one for each participant)
Events which are not included in the CD, are given as narratives for reading. Some pages of this material are incomplete. The story evolves through the contribution of the participants. Amalgamation of the above components depends on the strategic intervention of the Classroom Facilitator.
For the effective implementation of RACE, the Facilitator’s companion will have a pivotal role. Classroom Facilitator’s role is unlike that of a teacher’s role in the existing system of education. Unlike the teacher, the CF does not elicit certain pre-conceived set of answers and reinforce them by various means, mainly through repetition.
RACE assures the acquisition of language through:
·         Interaction of the participants with the multimedia material and the printed material.
·         Interaction of CF with the participants.
·         Interaction of SF with the pupils on the screen.
·         Interaction of participants through their pair work, group work, etc.

As a result of classroom facilitation certain products will be evolved. They are:
Portfolio-  a collection of tasks taken by each participant individually.
Our creations (discourses completed or refined in groups).They are exhibited at (ORC) Our Reading Corner.

Other features of RACE:

·         Ensures the transaction of English through meticulous spiraling of discourses.
·         Ensures the spontaneous construction of a variety of oral and written discourses such as conversation, description, poem, letter, diary, narrative, report, debate, and speech without explicit teaching.
·         Incorporates several strategies for the expansion of the zone of proximal development (ZPD) of students.
·         Makes use of a number of activities meant for the development of multiple intelligences.
·         Integrates the various skills of language in a most natural way.
·         Ensures the paradigm shift from the skill-based communicative approach to the knowledge-based cognitive approach.
·         Makes use of continuous and comprehensive evaluation scheme.
·         Promotes creative and meaningful use of language rather than mechanical reproduction of language texts.
·         Bridges the gap between the so-called “good” and “bad” performers of language.
·         Ensures a collaborative learning atmosphere in the classroom.

RACE was successfully tried out in several schools in Kerala and Trichi in Tamil Nadu. It has been found that learners brought under the programme can construct various linguistic discourses (   conversations, narratives, reports, essays, letters, poems, descriptions, speeches…..)
effortlessly and spontaneously. Moreover, unlike in conventional English classrooms, even the weak performers are not excluded from the classroom processes by virtue of the discourse-theme spiraling strategy that has been evolved. Activities have been designed incorporating the notion of Multiple Intelligence in order to take care of individual needs and differences. Since the Acquisition Model aims at processes that will equip the learner to make use of “finite means infinitively”, every learner is able to perform language at his or her level with confidence.

1.       Anandan ,K.N. (2002) RACE (Rapid Acquisition of Competence in English), Universal Asset,
Ernakulam, Kerala.
2. Anandan,K.N. (2006) Tuition to Intuition, Transcent, Calicut, Kerala.
3. Chomsky,N.(2000) New Horizons in the study of Language and Mind, Cambridge University Press.
4. Power,T.(2003) The appeal and poverty of CLT, TEFL.
5. Swan,M.(1985a) ‘A critical look at the Communicative Approach’(1),ELT Journal Vol.39.No.1 January 1985,pp.3-13.
6. Swan,M.(1985b) ‘A critical look at the Communicative Approach’(2),ELT Journal Vol.39.No.2,April 1985,pp.17-28.

Assignment on esl blog by Sutapa.

          I visited a blog prepared by Sean Banville. It has some excellent activities for teachers, students which will make the class interesting and engaging.
      Sean Banville introduced tools like word magnet, class timer, student magnet, student selector, student order, student magnets, text and image spinner which will help children to do activities in a fun way. He also suggested few activities like online pair work dictation which is definitely going to help students to practise listening and spelling skills. It is very encouraging as it is a scoring game. So, its very obvious that students will find it interesting. All these activities should be memorized by the teacher so that all these can be implemented in the classroom to see great results.
       The blog has lots of activities, history related topics and questions based on it. It also tells about his forthcoming sites which can be referred for assistance. He also added a video and questions has been asked.
He also added his views on TEFL.
       Overall, Sean Banville's blog is very resourceful and inspiring.



The blog I visited is Randall’s ESL Blog and the id is
This blog is designed for ESL/EFL teachers and students.
It helps to share ideas about learning English as a second or foreign language. Study abroad, ESL programs, accent reduction, ESL study Tips . . . Anything related to learning English and cultural understanding.
Main Features:
This blog has different links like:
  1. Train your Accent
  2. Tips for students
  3. Randall’s ESL Cyber Listening Lab
  4. EZ Slang
  5. Daily ESL

This blog is designed to help ESL students to improve their English skills by listening, reading, and writing comments on language study and culture. Follow these steps:
1. Read and/or listen to the learning tip or idea.
2. Think about these questions: What is the topic? What are two or three main ideas about the topic? Do you agree or disagree with these points and why? How does the point relate to you or other learners?
3. Write and post a comment in English about the topic and questions listed above. Comments are moderated for appropriateness. Please include your first name and country so we can get to know you better.
Randall has provided a new audio service that allows users to post audio comments along and to their social media sites including Face book and Twitter. There are many possible applications for such a service in those students and teachers can share ideas and create learning content online. Here is one example. Can you think of other applications for such a service? Share your ideas.
There are number of tasks given in this blog for both teachers and students: an interesting example is:
If you saw a classmate cheating on an English test, what would you do? The learners are asked to vote for it. This activity can later be used as a discussion topic in real classroom and thereby improve the thinking skills and speaking skills.
Other tasks given are with photos. For example Randall’s marathon with necessary objects. He posted a question like:

What supplies do you think language learners need most? Share your ideas .This activity could be adapted to teach learners integrated language skills.
 The speciality of this blog is that it is not just offering information about language teaching skill but a number of real world tasks and activities are given. Apart from this a number of videos and listening activities given for both teachers and learners. In brief I found this blog stands apart from other ESL blogs as it offers authentic materials for practising authentic language.

Ankita's on Esl


I  visited one of the site on ESL BLOG.  That blog is–THE TESOL ZONE .I  collected some  features and usefulness of this site of ESL BLOG. There are as below:
·       Features: 
            -It conduct training for the teachers.
            -The common training interchangeable are TESL ,TEFL ,TESOL.
            -It emphasizes teaching English literature also.
            -It also informs us what teaching situation in the different parts of the world.
            -It is international training program where the teachers are given inputs or the             
              latest  advance and advents in the field of education
            -It covers methodologies and various approaches to teach English as a Foreign                                              
              Language, grammar and vocabulary.
            -It is a mandatory course for teachers who want to teach English in various parts
              of the world.
             -TESOL course gain eligibility to teach English world wide.
·       Usefulness:
             -All ages of students can learn in several countries through this site and it also
              trains teachers.
             -It provides EFL coursebooks to students who interested to join this course.
             -The certificate which given by TESOL is accepted in schools world wide.
             -It provides ‘Licence  To Teach’.The international teaching certificate will help
               teachers to get teaching job abroad and in a particular country also.
             -This site has facebook where we can discuss or comment on any of the articles
               posted here and discuss any TESOL related topics.
                                                                        - Ankita zalavadiya
Assignment on esl blog submitted by : Arpan pithadiya
 Main web site                                    : esl
            branch web site                                    :  common grammatical error
  submitted on date                                  : 25 march 2011

features of  the current blog         :    correction of the grammatical mistakes
phrase - clause
misplaced correlatives
unnecessary shift in person and voice
improper series
And also the correction of incorrect case (noun or pronoun)
Lack of agreement (subject predicte)
Lack of agreement (pronoun antecedent)
               The blog is given as the main title common grammatical error the special facility given in this site is the mistake corrections by a special treatment each mistake is illustrated by an eક્ષ્ample or two with suggested corrections the bad eક્ષ્amples in red this are guidlines given specially to students.