Get the Picture: Teaching with Multimodal Texts

by Philip McConnell
English Language Institute of Singapore

Our students encounter many texts in their daily lives which combine linguistic, auditory and visual modes of representation. Such rich, multimodal texts can serve in the classroom as authentic and engaging materials that allow learners at any level to explore how meaning is created. They can also be used as the basis for many kinds of learning activities, providing additional means of engagement for teachers to help students develop skills for critical thinking, speaking and listening. Furthermore, these texts might be used to give students the opportunity to interact more effectively in different contexts for a variety of audiences and purposes. This paper offers a research-based rationale for teaching with multimodal texts. It also gives examples of multimodal texts and a set of strategies for the English classroom which are intended to enrich the experience of learning.

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Creative Ways of Teaching Research Paper Writing

by Alejandro S. Bernardo
University of Santo Tomas,

Research paper writing remains an uninteresting and unexciting activity for many university students. They may not have realized its indispensable value in their respective disciplines and target workplaces. Hence, teachers must provide more enticing and more motivating classroom-based writing tasks to spur students’ interest in producing varied academic texts. It is in this light that this paper proposes a number of “fun tasks” that teachers may use as their pre-writing tasks, lesson springboards or enrichment exercises when they teach the rudiments of academic writing or research paper production. The use of these “fun tasks” is based on the premise that cultivating students’ interest in research largely depends on the creativity of the teachers and the appeal of classroom activities and that learning could better take place when students are motivated and when they enjoy the learning process at the same time.

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Encouraging Proofreading and Revision

by Hayo Reinders
Middlesex University, United Kingdom

Recent years have seen a lot of interest in learner autonomy. Although many teachers can see the value of encouraging in learners more awareness of the learning process and the ability to make decisions about their learning without the help of a teacher, it is not always immediately clear how to do this. In this practical article, one activity is presented that could be used as part of a classroom language course or implemented in a self-access centre as a way to encourage students to take charge over the academic writing process. By being given the tools to monitor and assess their own work, students are being helped to become independent writers, and in this way, being given greater opportunities for more success in their academic careers.

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Pedagogical Blogging: Implementation in a Tertiary-level Professional Communication Course

by Brad Blackstone
Centre for English Language Communication
National University of Singapore

This paper presents a pedagogical blogging process that was implemented in a tertiary-level professional communication course. It describes blogging and its key components, provides a rationale for pedagogical blogging, and summarizes the course blogging activities and two novel elements, the blogging buddy and the blogging group. It also provides a description of how student blogging was evaluated, discusses student impressions of the blogging activity and provides links to student blogs.

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Mission Possible: How to Make Writing More Meaningful and Fun for Learners

by Maria Luz Elena N. Canilao
Ateneo de Manila University, Philippines

How do you make writing a more relevant learning experience for learners? How do you make it more enjoyable for them? How do you make them fall in love with it? These are some of the questions that this paper addresses. It discusses the complex writing process and offers a creative option that will enable teachers to design more innovative activities by following a task-based language teaching framework. It illustrates how life-like tasks may empower students in the classroom and help them overcome blocks to writing and produce interesting anthologies. Through the use of authentic and imaginative communication activities, teachers can make writing more meaningful and fun for learners.

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