Reflective Activities

Board Threads Posts Last Post
No New Posts Reflection 1.1

In some ways, the norms of ‘Standard English’ are just the linguistic equivalent of a dress code or rules for table etiquette. Reflect on this comparison and share your thoughts here.

1 29 Standard English
by Rachel Dry
Aug 18, 2020 16:28:24 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 1.2

The beliefs about ‘correct English’ challenged in this section are very strongly held by many people. The resilience of these beliefs makes it hard to appreciate that what is generally thought of as ‘incorrect’ usage may just be the use of alternative rules.
Reflect on how convincing you find the linguistic view of ‘correctness’ and let us know what you think here.

1 32 Correctness in Language
by Rachel Dry
Aug 20, 2020 13:05:49 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 1.3

Reflect in greater depth on one or more of the issues raised in this unit and then take part in discussion with other course users, replying to one or more previous posts.

1 43 Unit 1 Reflections
by Zoe Thomas
Aug 27, 2020 17:31:44 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 2.1

Reflect here on the extent to which other languages you know or know about are ‘international’ in this sense. Do you know or know about languages which are understood to be limited to ‘intra-national’ or ‘regional’ status? In your opinion, is it possible for these languages be owned by others in the same way that Widdowson argues for English?

1 15 Owning a Language (pt 1)
by Anita
Sept 6, 2020 12:58:20 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 2.2

Reflect on your understanding of translanguaging. What questions about the phenomenon do you have for teachers from your region and/or other parts of the world? Ask your questions (and answers ones that others have posed if you can) here.

1 16 Translanguaging
by Anita
Sept 6, 2020 17:38:34 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 2.3

Reflect in greater depth on one or more of the issues raised in this unit and then take part in discussion with other course users, replying to one or more previous posts.

1 33 Unit 2 Reflection
by Anita
Sept 6, 2020 17:58:08 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 3.1

A major conclusion we reached in the video clip on declarative and procedural knowledge of English is that ‘what [L2] learners are taught is not what they will come to know and use in any real communicative sense’. What do you think? Were you convinced by the neuropsychological account? Record your thoughts and read those of others here.

1 17 L2 Learners - Declarative vs Procedural Knowledge
by Anita
Sept 7, 2020 9:28:33 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 3.2

Reflect on the educational philosophies or ‘learning/teaching cultures’ of the country/countries you’re familiar with.
What features of these cultures and the ways they are manifested might help or hinder the development of plurilithic approaches to English in public and private education there? Share your thoughts here.

1 13 ‘Learning/teaching cultures’
by Anita
Sept 7, 2020 12:11:01 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 3.3

Reflect in greater depth on one or more of the issues raised in this unit and then take part in discussion with other course users, replying to one or more previous posts.

1 30 Unit 3 Reflections
by Anita
Sept 7, 2020 12:25:34 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 4.1

Do you plan to talk to your students about English(es), learning English, and/or teaching English? Reflect on how you might go about it, what your students’ reactions might be, and how you might respond to them.
If you already do so, what are the challenges such discussions raise and the benefits they bring? Record your reflections here.

1 11 Talking to students about English(ee), learning/teaching it
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 8:28:38 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 4.2

Reflect on some of the teaching materials and activities you currently use or are familiar with. In what ways do they implicitly encourage or explicitly promote monolithic and plurilithic thinking on the part of students? Share your reflections here.

1 13 Classroom Activities
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 10:12:12 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 4.3

Reflect in greater depth on one or more of the issues raised in this unit and then take part in discussion with other course users, replying to one or more previous posts.

1 29 Unit 4 Reflections
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 11:24:20 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 5.1

What do you think about the ideas expressed by Chris, Khawla, and Rana in this exchange? Are they potentially relevant or appropriate for your own situation? What kinds of international forums might be appropriate and/or effective places for your students to share their local experiences? Are there forums where it might be less appropriate and/or effective? Reflect on the extent to which such activities might help change your students’ beliefs about English, and share the results of your reflections here.

1 12 Make language your own
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 12:24:38 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 5.2

We hope this section has helped you to reflect on when and how you might share the ideas in this course with your colleagues. Share your ideas (and experiences), as well as any obstacles and how you might overcome them, here.

1 11 Sharing Changing Englishes ideas with colleagues
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 17:06:03 GMT
No New Posts Reflection 5.3

Reflect in greater depth on one or more of the issues raised in this unit and then take part in discussion with other course users, replying to one or more previous posts.

1 25 Unit 5 Reflection
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 17:49:03 GMT

Discussion Points

Board Threads Posts Last Post
No New Posts Discussion point 1.1

Spanish has several different words correponding to the English word language. Do you know of other languages which distinguish between different conceptualisations of language with different words? If so, do these words correspond to more monolithic or more plurilthic senses?
What do you think of the use of the word language as a verb by some linguists (Joseph 2002)?

1 38 Discussion pt 1.1 - The word "Language"
by Rachel Dry
Aug 18, 2020 15:59:44 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 1.2

The word dialect is often used outside linguistics to refer to language varieties that are not viewed as having the status of ‘full languages’. It is used in China, for example, for the hundreds of regional languages which are written with the same system of characters but which may be mutually unintelligible with Mandarin. It’s commonly used in Mexico to refer to indigenous languages. Is there anything similar in your country or other countries you’re familiar with? What do you feel about the linguistic claim that ‘Standard English’ is (just) a non-regional dialect?

1 28 Dialects & Standard English
by Rachel Dry
Aug 18, 2020 16:15:18 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 2.1

Wherever you are currently living, there are likely to be Outer and Expanding Circle Englishes being used somewhere nearby—perhaps all around you. A typical feature of these Englishes is their hybridity and the blurring of the borders between them and the languages used alongside them. This is clearly seen in what’s called ‘foreign accent’, and also in the ‘borrowing’ of words.
Find some samples of what might be Outer or Expanding Circle usage in your location, and make a list of some of the words which might not be considered to ‘belong’ to ‘Standard English’. See if you can find at least ten if you live in an Inner Circle country… and restrict yourself to twenty if you are in the Outer or Expanding Circles. (If you’re in an Expanding Circle country, feel free to look at learners: they are using English too!)
Share your words here to see if other course users can tell you how widespread they are.

1 13 "Non-Standard" English Words
by Anita
Sept 6, 2020 9:56:59 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 2.2

Share here any interesting examples of misunderstandings in ELF contexts, either involving native speakers or solely between non-native speakers. To what extent were they language-based? Do you recall how they were resolved?

1 15 Misunderstandings in ELF Contexts
by Anita
Sept 6, 2020 17:25:36 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 3.1

Post here a list of the different places or contexts (beyond teachers, textbooks, and tests) in which you think your students actually experience English (or you did when you were learning). What kinds of English are they? To what extent do these contexts correspond to the contexts in which learners might be using English in the future?

1 13 Places & Contexts of English Exposure
by Rachel Dry
Aug 21, 2020 15:04:57 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 3.2

There will, of course, be many other factors which shape the learning of English around the world, and the Englishes thus learned: please post any that you thought of here.

1 14 Factors that shape the learning of English
by Anita
Sept 7, 2020 11:19:40 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 4.1

Perhaps you already do some the things listed in Section 4.1. If so, share your classroom ideas and experiences here.

1 11 Classroom ideas and experiences
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 10:41:11 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 4.2

The extent to which you agree or disagree with what Nida, Rana, and Ayah say will depend in part on how convincing you've found the arguments put forward for your consideration in this course. What’s your opinion? What would you challenge or add? Tell us what you think and respond to others.

1 11 Testing English
by Rachel Dry
Aug 24, 2020 9:57:33 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 5.1

Read the following assessment of current possibilities for changing English in German schools (Kohn, 2011, p. 76):
"In German secondary schools [...] the situation appears to be creatively inconsistent [...] [N]on-native teachers and (new) correction rules that favour communicative skills over form add a certain touch of 'freedom'. At the same time, the educational authorities are beginning to take notice of pupils' needs regarding the use of English in lingua franca and intercultural contact situations. While the signals are still weak, they mark a shift away from the exclusive native speaker focus of the traditional foreign language teaching dogma and open a door for the development and implementation of more realistic pedagogical approaches. In addition, with the promotion of early foreign language learning and content and language integrated learning (CLIL), new contexts and conditions for classroom interaction are being introduced which strengthen and authenticate the overall communicative orientation and arguably lead to a cautious relaxation of Standard English norms."
(In case you are unfamiliar with the concepts mentioned by Kohn, you can find more information here about early foreign language learning and content and language integrated learning (CLIL).)
Are you aware of the way the national educational authorities in your own context view the learning and teaching of English, and which kind(s) of English are ‘proclaimed [as the] target norm’? Is there any sign that plurilithic orientations to English are leading to a ‘cautious relaxation of Standard English norms’ in your context?
If there are national, regional, or local policies that public education institutions must follow:
● Find out who Who makes the decisions about what goes on the English curriculum and in English exams?
● Find out how How do they make their decisions? Do they commission reports from academics, professional organisations or other experts? Do they ask other stakeholders for their opinions?

1 9 Local Intelligence
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 17:20:12 GMT
No New Posts Discussion point 5.2

In your view, what are the main ‘problems of public belief’ about English (and other languages) in the context(s) you are familiar with? Do you have any ideas for how to address them? Share your ideas here.

1 9 Problems of public belief about English
by Anita
Sept 8, 2020 17:39:26 GMT