English Foreign Language Communicative Games in Classrooms with Armenian Adult Learners
ByLuizaVardanyanMay 17, 2019
Teacher has to create opportunities for learners to communicate in target language (Harmer, 200, p. 84).A game carries educational purpose foremost in language classroom. (Richard-Amato, 1996, p.193).Adult learners differ with their specific goals and criticism of teaching methods rather than other age groups. (Harmer, 2001, p. 40).
Expression, interpretation and negotiation of meaning are necessary to help foreign language development according to Communicative Language Teaching theory (Savignon, 2002).Games applied in a language classroom have both fun elements and purpose to develop learners’ understanding of language concepts (Richard-Amato, 1996).Games follow specific rules of play which target the language concept necessary to develop among the learners.(Arnold, 1979).
Yang and Dixon researched whether games reduce psychological pressure in an EFL classroom in Chinese colleges.According to the research findings, games are effective in helping learners feel freer during the class in case the teacher considers learners’ language level and manages the game rules (Yang & Dixon, 2015).
Are EFL communicative games helpful tools in classrooms with Armenian adult learners?
Central Research Question
Semi-structured interviews with teachersto find out their opinion and experience on using EFL communicative games with adult learners.Observations of EFL classrooms (when a game is applied)to explore whether Armenian adults actively participate during the class when EFL communicative games are used.Questionnaires for adult learners (distributed after the class observation)to evaluate Armenian adults’ reflections on the effect of the applied game on their communication and participation and their opinion on playing games during the class in general.
The research was carried out in cooperation with the English language courses provided at AUA Extension Program.Pre-Intermediate and Upper-Intermediate English classrooms were observed.3 teachers.17 learners (both classes).
Interview findingsGames help to revise the previously learnt material or the newly explained topic in a fun and unnoticeable way.Adapting games to adult learners’ learning goals and language level is important.Observation findingsLearners’ good understanding of the learnt material is important so that the learners enjoy and practice communication during the game.
Analysis and Findings
EFL communicative games are helpful tools in class with Armenian adults because:Games help Armenian adultsunderstandthe target language topic and to have a firsthand practice.Games help to break the target language communication barrier and/or difficulty among some adults.Games helpteachers assessadults’ previously learnt topic in a fun and unnoticeable way.
Discussion and Conclusion
Arnold, A. R. (1979). The Function of Language Games in the Classroom.ELT Journal.33 (3) April 1, pp. 205-207. Retrieved on October 28, 2018, fromhttps://academic.oup.com/eltj/article-abstract/XXXIII/3/205/471771?redirectedFrom=fulltextHarmer, J. (2001).The Practice of English Language Teaching.Chapter 3: Describing Learners, Chapter 6: Popular Methodology, pp. 84-86. Harlow: Longman.Richard-Amato, P.A. (1996).Making It Happen: Interaction in the Second Language Classroom: from theory to practice.Chapter 11: White Plains, N.Y.: LongmanSavignon, S. (Ed.). (2002).Interpreting Communicative Language Teaching: Contexts and Concerns in Teacher Education. Chapter 1: Communicative Language Teaching: Linguistic Theory and Classroom Practice. New Haven; London: Yale University Press.Yang, Q. & Dixon V.L. (2015). Application of Games in College English Teaching in China.International Research and Review, Journal of Phi Beta Delta.4 (2). Pp. 65-75
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