Re: [xmca] Syllogism and interlanguage

From: Mark deBoer <mark who-is-at>
Date: Mon Dec 31 2007 - 17:48:00 PST

Hi Sarah,

I just wanted to properly reply to your mail and to make a few comments.

Sound like your PBL is a lot like the TBL (Task Based Learning) that
goes on in the ESL/EFL classrooms. It was introduced by a number of
people, mainly Willis and Willis, and from there many others have
followed suit to give a more heuristic approach to language learning.

The problem with TBL though is that there is a lot of pair work and
the the social interaction doesn't happen, or there is no
accountability on the par of the teacher 'What was the point of
today's lesson?'. As I am starting to discover, there is no 'right'
way to teach English, and despite the response I'll get from this
comment - I think Kumaravadivelu has the best approach - beyond
methods... in which the idea is not to teach but to look for learning
opportunities in the classroom. I have taken this approach in
developing the V-task methodology.

In your setting though it seems almost ideal that you look at PBL, the
students need to, in a social interactive setting be able to deduce
the problems and discuss the outcomes. In this kind of situation
though, why do you not also look at the Activity Theory? In my recent
study of collaboration, and reflective teaching, I looked at a number
of various theories and discovered that the interaction that occurs
needs also to be looked at from the point of outcomes - as was stated
earlier - the outcomes you can never see, they are always on the
horizon. When it comes to PBL, or TBL, the point of training or
discovering something new in the interactive setting always will lead
to new outcomes, in other words the training is never complete. The
roles of each person in the setting becomes important, especially in
course work.

I will look up your references that you mentioned. Thank you very much
for the direction!

Happy New Year!


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Received on Mon Dec 31 17:50 PST 2007

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