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Fun Science for Kids

Fun Science for Kids
Choi, Seung Hyun
Issue Date
외국어교육특수대학원 TESOL학과
이화여자대학교 외국어교육특수대학원
Warren Euwon Chung
Introduction English education in the Korean public school system is usually done through a government-issued textbook focusing on listening and speaking to develop students’ communicative language skill. The textbook contents generally include conversation skits, very simple short stories, games, songs, and chants, but it seems to lack reading contents to develop students’ reading skill. The current textbook is interesting for beginner or pre-intermediate students, but it doesn’t attract students’ attention for the intermediate or advanced level students. So the students can be easily bored or loose interest in learning English. This textbook “Fun Science for Kids” aims to teach learners English through science topics providing students with writing exercises, hands-on activities, exciting experiments, and interesting points of discussion. Through the science topics, students are encouraged to express their own ideas, ask questions, investigate, and come to vivid conclusions. This book introduces interesting science topics with vocabulary explanations for easier understanding, step-by-step procedures for the experiments, comprehension questions, writing, and discussion. The group of students addressed here is advanced high level (CEF B2) 5th and 6th graders in after-school or vacation camp programs in elementary school. Many target students are returnees, so their English competence is high enough to understand science in English, and they want to keep up their English competence through exciting science reading, discussion, and English speaking instruction. Method This textbook is based on the Content-Based Instruction (CBI). CBI is grounded on the following two principles. First, people learn a second language more successfully when they use the language as a means of acquiring information, rather than as an end in itself. Second, CBI better reflects learners’ needs for learning a second language. (Richards & Rogers, 2001). This book contains many science group projects such as discussions, writing, crafts, experiments, and presentations. It includes activities, such as making a volcano model, making layers of the earth model, and writing about features of volcanoes in Korea for a group research and presentation. Students also do a group discussion to predict the result of the volcano experiment and write about comparing and contrasting student-selected animals, etc. “The students can most effectively acquire a second language when the task of language learning becomes incidental to the task of communicating with someone…about some topic…which is inherently interesting to the student” (D’Anglejan & Tucker, 1975). One goal of CBI is for learners to become autonomous so that they come to “understand their own learning process and…take charge of their own learning from the very start” (Stryker & Leaver, 1993). Since vocabulary explanation is provided in each lesson and each unit has different science topics, students can study this book autonomously by themselves at their own pace. Expected Outcomes By studying with this textbook, students will develop effective communication skills to deliver their opinion in any context and learn to observe, classify, compare, sequence, predict, look for and share information, and draw conclusions. Students also will develop confidence in their ability to speak and read in English and gain an understanding of how they can continue to improve their speaking and reading skills. Conclusion Due to the needs of my target group, I believe this textbook will help students maintain their English competence by providing interesting science reading materials, experiments, hands-on activities, discussions, and group presentations. Through content-based instruction, students will learn the language as a by-product of the content with increased learner motivation more easily and effectively.
☞ 이 논문은 저자가 원문공개에 동의하지 않은 논문으로, 도서관 내에서만 열람이 가능하며, 인쇄 및 저장은 불가합니다.
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