The Impact of Communicative Language Teaching
January 8, 2010 Leave a comment
There are many techniques and principles in language teaching for example: The Grammar-Translation Method, The Direct Method, The Audio-Lingual Method, etc. Every technique in language teaching has their own goal and impact in students’ mastering of target language. This essay will briefly discuss about the impact of Communicative Language Teaching in teaching-learning English in a class, what is the principle of the Communicative Language Teaching and how its principle influence students’ development in mastering target language.
The goal of Communicative Language Teaching is to enable students to communicate in the target language. It enables students to communicate in context so it helps students in understanding the target language and not just memorizing what they learn during the course for example the vocabulary of the target language: the forms, meanings and functions in a sentence (Freeman-Dieane Larsen, 2000: 128). It will give students bigger benefit that just memorizing the vocabulary. Students are trained to use it in the context so that they master the vocabulary easily in appropriate context.
The teacher facilitates communication in the classroom. In this role, one of his major responsibilities is to establish situations likely to promote communication. During the activities he acts as and adviser, answering students’ questions and monitoring their performance. He might make note of their errors to be worked on at a later time during more accuracy-based activities. At other times he might be a ‘communicator’ engaging in the communicative activity along with students (Littlewood, 1981). It gives positive impact for students in teaching-learning activities. It gives big opportunities for students to use the target language actively without being afraid of making mistakes in using the target language. Students will make some adjustment of their false during their communication and also the teacher gives the feedback for the students during the course. All the adjustment is done together so that the students have the opportunity to fix their own fault or give feedback for their friends.
The most obvious characteristic of Communicative Language Teaching is that almost everything that is done is done with a communicative intent. Activities that are truly communicative, according to Morrow, have three features in common: information gap, choice, and feedback (Johnson and Morrow, 1981). Students use the language a great deal through communicative activities such as games, role-plays, and problem-solving tasks. Communicative Language Teaching also uses authentic materials. It is considered desirable to give students an opportunity to develop strategies for understanding language as it is actually used. With these characteristics of Communicative Language Teaching, the good impact that we can get is that by learning to communicate students will be more motivated to study a foreign language since they will feel they are learning to do something useful with the language (Freeman-Dieane Larsen, 2000: 130). They learn and use the target language in context, they practice the target language in a real context and it is very useful for their understanding of target language.
We communicate everyday. Language is useful when we use it in our daily life. It will be internalized in our mind unconsciously and it will make us easy to master a language. Communicative Language Teaching builds this kind of environment. Students are placed in a real life situation and use the target language effectively. Because of that the target language will be easy to be mastered. We can conclude that Communicative Language Teaching gives a good effect in teaching-learning activities. It gives the children a conducive environment for the student in mastering the target language and it is not surprising when children master the target language effectively.
Freeman-Deane Larsen. 2000. Techniques and Principles in Language Teaching. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
Johnson, Keith and Keith Morrow. 1981. Communication in the Classroom. Essex: Longman.
Littlewood, William. 1981. Communicative Language Teaching. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.