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The Origins of Language Curriculum Development


Brian Thomas

on 12 October 2012

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Transcript of The Origins of Language Curriculum Development

Things to Consider Understand:
Changes in approaches to language teaching i.e. curriculum development come from changes in teaching methods ... thus understanding the history of teaching methods allows a teacher to appreciate extant modes of curriculum How to ensure proper 'Selection'?
Consider Gradation!
"Gradation is concerned with the grouping and sequencing of teaching items in a syllabus" (10).

Thus 'gradation' serves as the instrument necessary to create cohesive curriculum materials in any syllabus design. Key point: The history of curriculum development in language teaching starts with syllabus design. Syllabus design is a specification of the content of a course of instruction and lists what will be taught and tested (Richards, 2). History
Grammar Translation Method (1800-1900)
Direct Method (1890-1930)
Structural Method (1930-1960)
Reading Method (1920-1950)
Audiolingual Method (1950-1970)
Situational Method (1950-1970)
Communicative Approach (1970-present) A concept important to each teaching method / corresponding syllabus design...

Selection: choosing appropriate textbooks and teaching materials.
Two important aspects of 'selection' include Vocabulary (conversational vs. business)
Grammar Selection (Which structures - formal or informal - should be taught?) J.C. Richards The Origins of Language Curriculum Development Frequency

What to teach first? Building blocks of grammar vs. conversational use Intrinsic Difficulty

Teach the simple
before the complex Linguistic Distance

Structures similar to those in L1 should be taught first Communicative Need

Key grammar, like
'Past Tense', must be
taught to students of
GRADATION (cc) photo by theaucitron on Flickr (cc) photo by theaucitron on Flickr QUESTIONS

1. Per the article, how may a teacher properly integrate 'Selection' into syllabus design?
2. The article notes that language learning is dependent on the textbook. In the classroom, what kinds of problems have you had with a specific textbook? How did you solve the problem?

Thank you!
Have a great day! [Please use the 'arrow' button found on the bottom of the screen]
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