SPELT journal number XXVIII, volume number I Quarterly Issue for March 2013
The Quarterly issue for March 2013 is now available. Feel free to read the journal’s editorial or have a look at its table of contents and front cover. The quarterly journal is available in printed format and a copy has been mailed to all SPELT members, free of charge. You can have a glimpse of this quarter’s issue below.
Table of contents
- Child Centredness and Learner Independence (Ray Brown)
- Visuals for Poetry (Munazza Mahmood Alam)
- Making Reading Easy for Beginners (Merve ElbirlikTulek)
- Amazing effect of pictures in language classrooms (Saulat Majid)
- Peace: Beginning Needed Vistas (Salma Mahmud)
- Teacher Talk : An Invaluable Experience (Adeeba Ahmad)
- Learners’ Link:Why? (Aamnah Allawala)
In the lead article Ray Brown delves into the subject of ‘Child-centredness and Learner Independence.’ He feels that often teachers have a belief in the concepts without actually knowing what they really are. He elaborates on what the concepts entail and explains how teachers can make these operational in their classrooms. Although child-centred learning is a sub-set of Learner Autonomy for learners of all ages, he believes that the former cannot be achieved by just trimming down what is offered to the advanced learner. ‘It means redefining concepts and and forming new beliefs, not adjusting existing ones’. The article can serve as a useful guide to all teachers wishing to provide learner autonomy in their classrooms and aspiring to make their pupils independent learners.
In her article on ‘Visuals for Poetry’, Munazza Mahmud provides useful strategies to understand the message of a poem. Poetry generally raises our affective filter because not everyone can relate to the magic of the language. Pictures can help both teachers and students to look forward to a poetry lesson. A well planned and successfully executed lesson can facilitate long term learning.
Saulat Majid is ‘Making Reading Easy for Beginners’ by sharing innovative strategies that she has devised and uses in her Kindergarten class in the U.S. The writer highlights techniques that can be used by teachers as well as mothers to facilitate the process whereby the child starts by identifying sounds with the letters of the alphabet, learns to read words and eventually becomes an avid reader.
Salma Mahmud encourages teachers to take up conscious steps in making learners aware of ‘Peace’ as an important social issue not only in a diverse classroom but more importantly, in a multi-cultural world at large. The writer employs a newspaper article, a low cost and handy aid, to develop critical thinking in learners who live in a trouble stricken world. The activities are easy to adapt and should spark an interest in even those learners who are not enthusiastic readers.
In the Teacher-talk section Adeeba Ahmad gives a detailed account of her ‘Invaluable Experience’ in her first four weeks as a student of the In-service Certificate Course for English Language Teachers (ICELT). This is a one-year Cambridge University, U.K. course that is conducted every year by SPELT at its premises. The article highlights the effective input given by highly trained instructors who, through their personal care and guidance act as mentors showing the way to the latest techniques and strategies in English language teaching.
‘Why?’ is a frantic, desperate call from Aamnah Allahwala who is at a loss to understand why the youth of today have to watch and experience days of terror, fear and unrest? She bewails the fact that due to the inability of the elders of the country to find a solution to problems besetting the country and especially the city of Karachi, the youth feel that they are trapped in a situation where they cannot rise to the heights they aspire to.