TED: The World's English Mania - Complimentary Lesson

TED: The World's English Mania - Complimentary Lesson

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This lesson is designed to exploit a listening text and provide students the chance to engage with all four skills and systems in a meaningful way. It asks students to predict content, listen for meaning and also decode different sounds, deal with vocabulary autonomously, and engage with the topic personally. The lesson also uses the talk as a launching point (see: extension lesson) for further language analysis in the form of compare and contrast language and tasks followed by critical thinking and using the target language in writing. The main aim of this lesson it to exploit a short TED talk in various meaningful ways.

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Traditionally, listening texts have not been fully exploited in the language classroom. Further, how they are implemented generally tests the learners’ listening skills, and doesn’t teach them how to listen. As John Field (2009) says in his book Listening in the Language Classroom, the notion of comprehension has led teachers and syllabus design to focus on the product of listening and ignore the process. Listening in an additional language requires significant cognitive development, and the traditional approach doesn’t account for this. By asking learners to listen to macro and micro elements, we help them to discover their own gaps and notice what they often don’t hear. In doing so with authentic texts, learners become better equipped to notice and use the same strategies in their own contexts.