Статья "Project work is one of the most effective methods to motivate students"

Статья об использовании проектной методики на уроках иностранного языка.

Сомова Наталья Владимировна

преподаватель иностранных языков

$ Хэхэского университета

город Хэйхэ, КНР

Тема: «Project work is one $of the most effective methods to motivate students».

Teaching English as a foreign language has changed tremendously over the past 2 decades. Curricular, teaching methods and teaching materials have been developed to meet the changing needs.

$There is no unique answer which method the best is. The teacher has to research and find the best variant for his own students. As for me I consider project method as one of the best for motivating. Projects allow students to apply the knowledge acquired from teachers and books without coping ready made answers, because the tasks set for pro$jects always require fantasy and creativity.

As children grow older the character of pro$ject work changes towards involving more library and research work, observation and survey. This has another, no less important function: to develop a habit of self-study, an ability to find and process information, a skill to draw one’s own conclusion. This method gives a huge impulse to their imagination and creativity, without which language learning will always stay purely mechanical and ineffective pr$ogress. The complex of techniques aimed at developing all these skills is called “learner-centered” approach and include student involvement and learners’ autonomy.

Some easy projects to use on the first step of working with this method: “Family trees” (students elaborate on their family trees by $introducing other branches of the family and adding photographs about them). “Friends across the world” (students write about friends or people they know in their country or other and collect pictures or maps of these countries for the wall display). “Class survey” )students prepare and carry out a class survey about “favorite thing”, fi$nd out the most popular pizza popping, soft drinks, ice cream flavor, Sunday afternoon activity or first name of a girl or a boy and so on). “Visitor’s menu” (students plan a menu for a visitor to show a range of their national dishes). "Star" (students collect information and pictures about a famous music$ian, sportsman or film star and write short paragraphs about them).

Probably the most outstanding types of projects are exercises written by the learners themselves. It's great to give children the chance both to make their own exercises and do exercises made by their peers. It can be different tasks crossword puzzles, scrambled words, texts with grammar or co$ntext mistakes, gap -filling or jigsaw tasks and so on.

Project work can have different configurations. Projects differ in degree to which the teacher and students decide$ on the nature and sequencing of project- related activities. Structured projects are determined and organized by the teacher in terms of topic, materials, methodology and presentation. Unstructured projects are defined largely by the students themselves and semi-structured are defined and organized in part by the teacher and in part by students.

$Projects can also be linked to simulated real- world issues (debate on pros and cons of something). Projects can also be tied to student interests, with or without real - world significance (students plan to visit international airport and make some interviews of international t$ravelers and make video film) .

Projects can differ in data collection techniques and sources of information. Research projects -gathering^ information through library research. Text projects involve encounters with texts (e.g. literature, reports, news media, video and audio material computer-based information).

Co$rrespondence projects require communication with individuals (or businesses, governmental agencies, schools or information by means of letters ,faxes, phone calls or e-mails).

Survey projects entail creating a survey instrument and then collecting and analyzing data from informants.

Encounter projects result in face to face contact with guest speakers or individuals out of the classroom.

Projects may also differ in the way that information is reported as part of a c$ulminating activity .Production projects involve the creation of bulletin board displays, videos, radio programs, poster session, written reports, photo essays, letters, handbooks, brochures, banquet menus and what not.

Performance projects can take shape as staged debates oral presentati$ons, theatrical performances, food fares or fashion shows. My students like this kind of presentation and always have a success. We often show our final presentations to younger students and to other classes.

Organizational projects entail the planning and formation of a club, conversation table or convers$ation partner program.

Project work requires multiple stages of development to succeed. You can follow such steps.

Step 1. students and instructor agree on the theme for the project.

Step 2.$ Student and instructor determine the final outcome.

. They can choose from a variety of options including a written report, letter, poster or bulletin board display, debate oral presentation , information packet, handbook, newspaper or video. I have a lot of posters, letters, written report$s and many other things made by my pupils.

Step 3. Students and teacher structure the project. After students have determined the st$arting and end points of it, they need to structure the "body" of the project. They should answer the questions: what information is needed? How this information be obtained ?(library search, interviews, videos, internet). How this information be gathered, compiled and analyzed? What role does each student play in the project .In a group one child may be a good "ideas generator", another more talented arti$stically. As a result everybody will benefit from the share responsibility. Leaner-centered approach , which has become a buzzword of our profession plays an immense role in project work.

.It's a brilliant idea to make a mixed ab$ility class a laboratory where all types of students are contributing in creating a new result by their combined efforts.

Step 4. instructor prepares students for the language demands of information gathering. For example , students are going to collect information by means of interviews I must give them some exercises on question formation, introduce conversational for$mulas, time for role plays to provide feedback on pronunciation and to allow students to practice listening and note- taking or audio- taping. If they want to use library I try to practice skimming and note taking with samples of texts.

$Step 5. Students gather information.

Step 6. Teacher prepares students for the language demands of compiling and analyzing data. I do some sessions in which students organize sets of material, evaluate, analyze and interpret them. I advice them to use different kinds of grids, charts that might highlight relationships among ideas.

Step 7. Students compile and analyze i$nformation.

Step 8. Instructor prepares students for the language demands of the culminating activity. Here I do different language improvement activities to help students succeed with presentation of their final products.(I have a lot of them and use a lot so that to motivate my pupils and make lessons more productive. I'll share with some of them later.)

Step 9. Students present their final product.

Step 10. Students evaluate the projects.

$ As for me, to tell the truth it's too difficult to evaluate my kids. Should I access the idea, the artistic quality of the poster or the correctness of the text? From my point of view teacher should avoid marking th$at sort of student's performance. Usually I apply the so- called peer assessment. Children assess themselves insight the group they worked and the rest of students at final presentation. As for error correction I do it only during the period of working at the task not at the presentation.

Some project work ideas.

"Wall chart: homeless people" children collect pictures and information from $magazines or newspapers and make a wall chart. The text books 10,11 by V.P. Kuzovlev will help a lot. "Ecological campaign" stud$ents plan (and carry out) a funding raising project to help save some animals or they can make T- shirts with emblems against different kinds of pollution, posters, round tables and what not.

"Sale time" pupils organize a classroom sale with proceeds going to a charity or school fund. They bring to class the items they want to sell and price and display them. All shoppings must be done in English. They can prepare different kinds of $ads as well. "One day trip" students imagine they have won tickets to fly on a one day visit to London, New York, Sydney, Tokio or Paris.

“Famous birthplaces” Kids research and write about famous birthplaces of great literary, artistic, religious or political figures and then they can do a book gathering all the pages about famous people.

“Americanisms” students collect “Americanisms” in use in our country (signs, advertisements) for an $on-going list that can be kept in the$ classroom.

“Useful advice for tourists” Children prepare a booklet of useful tips for tourists visiting your country for the first time.]

“Funny captions” students collect pictures of people in unusual situations and then write funny story.

“Portrait gallery” students interview important personalities in their school or college and write short descriptions and biographies of them. It can be typed and displayed together with photographs to help new student$s become familiar with their surroundings.

“A poem I like” children find a favorite poem in England and bring a verse or 2 to read to class. They can write it out for wall display and find pictures to illustrate it.

“Your ideal café” pupils have been asked by a firm of architects to make suggestion for an ideal café. They decide on $the ideal site, décor, the type of food and drink, opening hours, music, etc. And draw up a detailed plan for their café and illustrate if it possible.

“Class$ recipe book” they compile a class recipe book which they can give to friends or even sell for charity. Some students collect and edit the recipes and others draw sketched or collect pictures to accompany them.

“This month at the cinema” students produce a film magazine in English with one or 2 review sand a list of top ten films with their personal five-star rating. Some students may also to write news flashes about film stars or news or future films.

“Reading survey” students prepare a questionnaire to find out information about books and habits from other people (e.g. $in their apartment block, another class, their teachers, their own family or their circle of friends). They can add other questions to find out about favorite authors or favorite childhood books. And others.

In conclusion I want to summarize the importance of project work $for successful EFL teaching and learning.

  1. Project work focuses on content learning rather than on specific language targets.

  2. Project work is student- centered , though the teacher plays a major role in offering support and guidance.

  3. Project work is coope$rative rather than competitive.

  4. It leads to the integration of skills and processing of information from varied sources, mirroring real life tasks.

  5. It culminates in an end product that can be shared with others.

  6. Project work $is potentially motivating, stimulating and challenging.

Список использованной литературы

1.Бабанский К.С. Методы обучения в современной обще$образовательной школе.-Москва: Просвещение, 1985.-213с.

2.Зимняя И.А., Сахаров Т.Е. Проектная методика обучения английскому языку.//Иностранные языки в школе.-1999.-№3-С.9-15.

3.Полат Е.С. Компьютерные телекоммуникации в школе: Пособие для учителя/.-Москва,1995.-218с.

4.Копылова В.В. Методика проектной работы на уроках английского языка.-Москва,2003.-317с.

5.Полат Е.С. Метод проект$ов на уроках английского языка.// Иностранные языки в школе.-2000.-№2,3-С.17-19,23-24.

6.Phillips D., Burwood S. Project with Your Learners (Primary Resource Books). - Oxford: Oxford University Press, 1999.-365p.

7.Ribe R., Vidal N. Project Work. Step by Step.- Oxford: Heinemann, 1993.-456p.

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