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Extensive Reading Integrated with Intensive Reading

Extensive Reading Integrated with Intensive Reading
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외국어교육특수대학원 TESOL학과
이화여자대학교 외국어교육특수대학원
Laura Eunae Park
1. Introduction The purpose of this textbook is to help students to improve their English language skills through extensive reading (ER) and intensive reading (IR). ER is the main approach for this textbook; but, IR is also integrated into this textbook in order to provide a balanced approach to developing the four language skills. One of the most important discoveries that I have made from my graduate courses in the MA TESOL program is the true value of reading and its benefits for language learners. Most students in Korea focus on improving their English language skills; however, they do not have many opportunities to read extensively due to the heavy burden of exam preparations. Thus, students need an opportunity to discover the joy of reading for pleasure through ER. Since ER is a relatively an unfamiliar approach in most Korean English learning contexts, this textbook is designed to guide the students by introducing appropriate reading materials and helping them to increase their motivation and interest in reading the books. The books are graded readers of classic literature, and they have been selected according to the students’ proficiency level as well as their interests. The target learners are 12 first and second-year middle school students of mixed gender, whose ages range from 14 to 15 years old. Their proficiency level is intermediate-low, according to the ACTFL. Classes will take place in an after-school English program at a middle school. This set of textbook consists of 10 remarkable stories from classic literature. Galda & Cullinan (2002) claim that literature enables young people to explore and understand their world and enriches their lives and widens their horizons. Learning from classics will teach young learners to discover themselves as well as the world around them, helping them to develop a crticial perspective toward the society in which they live. 2. Method and Rationale The primary method adapted for this textbook is ER; however, IR methods are slightly included as well. IR studies have shown that ER is beneficial for helping students to develop their speaking, listening, and writing language skills (Maley, 2005). Moreover, the goal of ER is to help students to become fluent, independent, and confident readers (Day & Bamford,1998). As such, adapting ER as an alternative approach to teaching English has become an important component in the foreign language curriculum. The activities in this textbook mostly focus on the development of productive skills, such as speaking and writing. There are also listening activities with short video clips and songs in the warm-up stage in order activate the students’ background knowledge before starting the main activities. Short excerpts from the books are also included in the textbook in order help the students to understand the important events in the story. Students will also learn to use effective reading strategies such as skimming, scanning, making inferences and finding the cause and effect in order to develop effective reading comprehension skills. Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) is a language teaching method in which learners are encouraged to engage in authentic communicative interaction in the target language (Nunan, 1991). Students will read a book before each lesson and practice speaking and writing with different types of activities from the textbook; these activities will help the students to continue reading for pleasure outside of the classroom while at the same time improving their productive skills. In addition, this textbook integrates Task-Based activities. Richards, Platt & Weber (1986) note that a task is an activity or an action which is carried out as a result of processing or understanding the language. Using task-based activities will help the students to learn English as they use the language in meaningful contexts and complete the task goals through interaction. This textbook has a total of 10 units and there are two chapters in each unit. All of the chapters follow a pre-, while-, and post-stage, and each stage has its own goals and objectives; these goals and objectives include a variety of activities such as activating the learner’s background knowledge, making predictions and inferencing, learning about the author’s background in order to aid overall understanding of the author’s purpose and intended message, developing speaking skills through information gap activities, getting to know classmates through games, improving writing skills by summarizing and personalizing the story by integrating their own stories into the main story. Krashen (1989) explains that comprehensible input is an essential component for ER, providing meaningful input through natural encounters with the text. In order to provide comprehensible input for the target learners, graded readers appropriate for the students’ reading level have been selected. 3. Expected Outcomes First of all, reading English books and learning with this textbook will ultimately guide the learners to enjoy reading English books; furthermore, students will continue to read and develop a habit of reading for pleasure. As a result, students will not only obtain positive results in their studies, but they will improve in even in other subjects as well. Secondly, the target students will improve their productive skills in English. They will be more confident in producing output as they engage in pairwork, groupwork, and presentations. Finally, they will be able to gain insights and knowledge about classic literature and learn to think critically from the stories. 4. Conclusion This textbook is designed to help students to develop an interest in reading and to motivate them to learn English through ER and IR. The target students will have a lot of opportunities to practice the target language as they work with CLT and task-based activities. In sum, the students will broaden their concept of learning and improve their English competence by reading a lot of books in English, which in turn will help them to develop other skills such as critical thinking abilities.
☞ 이 논문은 저자가 원문공개에 동의하지 않은 논문으로, 도서관 내에서만 열람이 가능하며, 인쇄 및 저장은 불가합니다.
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