USING VIDEO IN THE ENGLISH LANGUAGE CLASSROOM ?· Using video in the language classroom ... of using…

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    V ideo is a popular and a motivating potential medium in schools. Usingvideo in the language classroomhelps the language teachers in many differentways. Video, for instance, brings the outsideworld into the language classroom, providingthe class with many different topics and reasonsto talk about. It can provide comprehensibleinput to the learners through contextualisedmodels of language use. It also offers goodopportunities to introduce native Englishspeech into the language classroom. Throughthis article I will try to show what the benefitsof using video are and, at the end, I presentan instrument to select and classify videomaterials.

    1. The benef i t s o f v ideo in the1. The benef i t s o f v ideo in the1. The benef i t s o f v ideo in the1. The benef i t s o f v ideo in the1. The benef i t s o f v ideo in thelanguage classrlanguage classrlanguage classrlanguage classrlanguage classroom oom oom oom oom

    The same principles and benefits we havewhen developing listening activities apply tovideo: we get familiar with different varietiesand accents of spoken language; we acquirelanguage subconsciously even when we arenot requested to pay attention to its specialfeatures, and we develop awareness ofpronunciation, rhythm, intonation, pitch andstress. Nonetheless, video is richer thanaudio tape. As Harmer (1998) points out,speakers can be seen, backgroundinformation can be filled in visually, andparalinguistic features such as bodymovements, clothes people wear, and theirlocation, help us grasp meaning. Likewise,

    video contributes to the development ofgrammatical, sociolinguistic and discoursecompetencies, among others. In the followingparagraphs I briefly describe the advantagesof using video in the language.

    1.1 The language system1.1 The language system1.1 The language system1.1 The language system1.1 The language system

    Video presents language being used in allits aspects (grammar, vocabulary,communicative functions, pronunciation andintonation) (Bouman: 1986, 14). In thesociolinguistic area, it should be pointed outthat the immediacy of video helps to showsocial interaction, its visual setting and thesocio-linguistic factors that are vitallyimportant in determining which languageshould be used in a particular social situation(Bury: 1983).

    1 .21.21.21.21.2 Paralinguistic featuresParalinguistic featuresParalinguistic featuresParalinguistic featuresParalinguistic features

    As said before, video provides a truerrepresentation of a communicative event (Hicket al: 1982) where paralinguistic or non-verbalfeatures of face-to-face communication suchas gestures, postures, eye contact, closenessof one speaker to another, facial expression,form an integral part of the communicativeprocess (Bury: 1983).

    1 .31.31.31.31.3 ListeningListeningListeningListeningListening

    Video provides practice in listeningcomprehension (Sheering: 1982) and shows

    USING VIDEO IN THE ENGLISH

    LANGUAGE CLASSROOM

    Vicente AmadoVicente AmadoVicente AmadoVicente AmadoVicente AmadoAntonio Nario HH. Corazonistas and Tabora School

    v_amado@yahoo.com

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    English spoken at a normal or near-normalspeed, introducing a variety of differentaccents, speech patterns, and voice types (Hall:1986). As Bury (1983: ii) points out, ifthe materials have immediate visual impact,then learners will naturally want to talk aboutthem.

    1.4 Language experience1.4 Language experience1.4 Language experience1.4 Language experience1.4 Language experience

    Video enriches the students experience oflanguage and helps him to continue learningfrom TV and video on his own (Willis: 1983).

    1.5 Contextualisation1.5 Contextualisation1.5 Contextualisation1.5 Contextualisation1.5 Contextualisation

    Tomalin (1986) and Hick et al. (1982)see video as a diverting and motivating toolthat contextualises language better thananything else using a combination of soundand moving pictures where the languagelearner sees and hears the various charactersusing the target language in varied situations.

    1.6 Discourse1.6 Discourse1.6 Discourse1.6 Discourse1.6 Discourse

    For Hick et al. (1982) video can presentdiscourse features such as the organisationof information in a speech with hesitations,pauses, repetition, restatement, etc.

    2.2.2.2.2. ELELELELELT Video: AT Video: AT Video: AT Video: AT Video: Advantages and limitationsdvantages and limitationsdvantages and limitationsdvantages and limitationsdvantages and limitations

    According to Lonergan (1984), themerit of ELT video materials is that theyare planned and produced for a language-learning audience. Using ELT video materialin the classroom has been proved to be ofgreat advantage in helping the developmentof language abilities in students. However, italso has been shown that some limitationshave to be faced when video is used as ateaching aid.

    Lonergan also sees the fact that the vastmajority of viewers watch for relaxation andentertainment and that the medium makes nodemands on them. That is a limitation in the useof video as a teaching aid. On the other hand,the reciprocity of discourse is a missing elementin the learners response to video materials asface-to-face interaction is not possible

    Other limitations of ELT video materialshave been pointed out by Porter and Roberts(1981: 37), as follows:

    Intonation: Intonation: Intonation: Intonation: Intonation: Intonation is marked by unusually wide and unusually frequent pitch movement, as opposed to spontaneousspeech which is jerky, has frequent pausesand overlaps, goes intermittently faster andslower, louder and softer, higher and lower(Ur: 1984, 9).

    Enunc ia t ion: Enunc ia t ion: Enunc ia t ion: Enunc ia t ion: Enunc ia t ion: Speakers tend toenunciate words with excessive precision;assimilation and elision are minimal.

    Structural repetition: Structural repetition: Structural repetition: Structural repetition: Structural repetition: Some structures/functions are repeated very often.

    Complete sentences: Complete sentences: Complete sentences: Complete sentences: Complete sentences: Speakers expressthemselves in neat, simple, rather short, well-formed sentences. This type of speech doesnot give a good model of spoken language,as Brown and Yule (1983: 26) observe, yetnative speakers typically produce bursts ofspeech which are much more readily relatableto phrase -typically shorter than sentences,and only loosely strung together.

    Distinct turn-taking: Distinct turn-taking: Distinct turn-taking: Distinct turn-taking: Distinct turn-taking: One speakerwaits until the other has finished, a situationnot common in real life where there is, infact, some overlap between speakers includinginterruptions.

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    Pace: Pace: Pace: Pace: Pace: Often ELT texts have a uniformand typically slow pace, whereas in normalspeech the speakers adjust their speechaccording to the situation, their knowledgeof the topic, their mood, etc.

    Quantity: Quantity: Quantity: Quantity: Quantity: Speakers usually say the sameamount of utterances.

    Attention signals: Attention signals: Attention signals: Attention signals: Attention signals: The hesitation(er...you know...) and attention signals (uhuh... mmm...) are missing. In natural conversationthese fillers as Brown and Yule (1983) callthem, help the interlocutor to make it clearthat he has taken up his turn or intends tocontinue but needs to plan what to say.

    F F F F Formality: ormality: ormality: ormality: ormality: There is a great deal ofstandardised language; slang and swearing arevery rare.

    Limited vocabular Limited vocabular Limited vocabular Limited vocabular Limited vocabulary: y: y: y: y: Vocabulary isrestricted and specific whereas in naturalspeech there is usually a great deal of non-specific, general vocabulary, e.g. chap, guy,fellow, etc to refer to a male person (Brownand Yule: ibid).

    Mutilation: Mutilation: Mutilation: Mutilation: Mutilation: Texts are mutilated or isolatedfrom their context (noise reduction, limitednumber of characters, etc). Such mutilationof the message is, however, a natural andintegral part of the authentic listeningexperience (Porter and Roberts: 1981, 38),where the listener tries to clean up the text ofdistracting noise, concentrating his attentiononly on the message.

    3. The type of materials available3. The type of materials available3. The type of materials available3. The type of materials available3. The type of materials available

    The first type is those materials speciallymade for language students. The second typeis those videos made for general educational

    purposes whose main aim is the subject matter.The third type includes those off-air TVprogrammes videotaped and used as ateaching aid. In order to ensure adequateselection of video material we can useevaluation forms like the one included in annex1. In preparing this scheme I have relied heavilyon Joiners model (1990). It should bepointed out that by using evaluationframeworks to select video materials, we canmake sure we examine general, technical, andlinguistic and paralinguistic features.

    4. Suggested stages for video use4. Suggested stages for video use4. Suggested stages for video use4. Suggested stages for video use4. Suggested stages for video use

    4.1 Pre-viewing activities4.1 Pre-viewing activities4.1 Pre-viewing activities4.1 Pre-viewing activities4.1 Pre-viewing activities

    During this stage students should beintroduced to situations that generateexpectations that will be useful in anticipatingand predicting the content of the scene thatwill be seen. One way to introduce them tosuch situations is by giving them pre-viewing questions to help them approach thetext with certain schemata in mind. Thepurpose of this stage is to create anatmosphere to viewing and to guide thelearner to watch with a purpose.

    4.2 While viewing activities4.2 While viewing activities4.2 While viewing activities4.2 While viewing activities4.2 While viewing activities

    The purpose of these activities is to helpguide students comprehension while viewing.The students are asked to focus their attentionon specific information. This activity isfollowed by one or more selective viewingtasks where students are asked to search forinformation and record it in some way, usuallyby completing a grid, ticking a box, drawing,etc. (Maley and Moulding: 1981). This stageincludes techniques such as silent viewing,listening with no picture, guessing, predicting,checking, interpreting and matching.

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    4.3 P4.3 P4.3 P4.3 P4.3 Post-viewing activitiesost-viewing activitiesost-viewing activitiesost-viewing activitiesost-viewing activities

    These activities have multiple purposes: Tocheck whether the students have understoodwhat they needed to understand and whetherthey have completed whatever while-viewingtask has been set successfully (Underwood:1989) and to broaden discussion of the topicor language of the viewing text, and perhapstransfer things learned to another context.Post-viewing activities also attempt to guidestudents discussion of what they have seenor heard in the video sequence and to providecontrolled language practice related to thevideo. Finally, these activities give thestudents the opportunity to consider theattitude and manner of the participants ofthe video sequence (Underwood: 1989).

    5. Some techniques to exploit video5. Some techniques to exploit video5. Some techniques to exploit video5. Some techniques to exploit video5. Some techniques to exploit videomaterialmaterialmaterialmaterialmaterial

    Popular techniques include silent viewing,listening with no picture, prediction,description, freeze frame, role playing,guessing, jigsaw viewing and listening.

    Sound only: Sound only: Sound only: Sound only: Sound only: The listening with nopicture activity is the opposite technique tosilent viewing. It emphasises theimportance of the contribution of the visualelement to understanding and context(Lonergan: 1984, 76).

    Jigsaw viewing and listening: Jigsaw viewing and listening: Jigsaw viewing and listening: Jigsaw viewing and listening: Jigsaw viewing and listening: Halfof the class watches the sequence withoutsound while the other half listens to the soundwith no picture.

    Predicting: Predicting: Predicting: Predicting: Predicting: The teacher shows a shortscene stopping it at particular points. Thestudents are asked to say what is going to besaid or done next.

    Role play: Role play: Role play: Role play: Role play: As (Watcyn-Jones: 1983)says, the aim of role play is to give studentsrealistic practice in performing tasks whichthey may encounter outside the classroom;and to allow them to use language in a muchfreer way.

    Description: Description: Description: Description: Description: Half of the class sees andlistens to the scene while the other half onlylistens. Then the ones who listened describewhat happened to the others. The studentswho saw and heard the scene tell the listenershow accurate their description is. After thediscussion the scene is shown again to theentire class.

    F F F F Freeze frame:reeze frame:reeze frame:reeze frame:reeze frame: This technique is usefulto direct students attention to gestures, facialexpressions or movements which indicatemood or feelings. It allows a more detaileddiscussion of a particular action or gesture.

    Guessing (What are they thinking? Guessing (What are they thinking? Guessing (What are they thinking? Guessing (What are they thinking? Guessing (What are they thinking?What are they feeling?): What are they feeling?): What are they feeling?): What are they feeling?): What are they feeling?): Before viewingthe sequence the teacher asks the students tolook for kinds of emotions speakers can reveal,or what their thoughts are.

    ConclusionsConclusionsConclusionsConclusionsConclusions

    As shown above, video offers morepossibilities of class activities to the languageteacher than any other teaching aid. It givesthe teacher the opportunity to change theroutine and get more students involved in theclass participating actively which could helpto change the students attitude to English.Once this goal is reached, better results canbe expected.

    ReferencesReferencesReferencesReferencesReferences

    Bouman, L. (1986). Who is Afraid ofvideo. MET. 13/4: 14-19

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    Brown, G. Yule, G. (1983). Teaching theSpoken Language. Cambridge: CambridgeUniversity Press.

    Bury, C. (1983). Video English TeachingGuide. London: The British Council &Macmillan.

    Hall, D. (1986). The VCR in the EFLClassroom. English Teaching Forum. Xxiv/2: 24-27.

    Harmer, J. (1998). How to Teach English.Essex: Longman.

    Henry, L. Geddes, M. (1987). Zoom in.Oxford: Oxford University Press.

    Hick, S. et al. (1982). Video for Analysisand Correction of Learner Performance. InGeddes and Sturtridge (eds.) Video in theLanguage Classroom. London: Heinemann.

    Joiner, E. (1990). Choosing and UsingVideotexts. Foreign Language Annals. 23/1: 53-64.

    Lonergan, J. (1984). Video in LanguageTeaching. Cambridge: Cambridge UniversityPress.

    Maley, A. and Moulding, S. (1981).Learning to Listen. Cambridge: CambridgeUniversity Press.

    Porter, D. Roberts, J . (1981).Authentic Listening Activit ies. ELTJournal. 36/1: 37-47.

    Sheering, S. (1982). Exploiting TelevisionVideos with Particular Reference to TeachingESP. In Geddes and Sturtridge (eds.). Video inthe Language Classroom. London: Heinemann.

    Tomalin, B. (1986). Using Video withChildren. PET. June: 34-35.

    Underwood, M. (1989). TeachingListening. London: Longman.

    Ur, P. (1984). Teaching ListeningComprehension. Cambridge: CambridgeUniversity Press.

    Watcyn-Jones, P. (1983). Impact. London:Penguin.

    Willis, D. (1983). The Potential andLimitations of Video. In McGovern, J. (ed). VideoApplications in English Language Teaching. ELTDocuments 114. London: Pergamon.

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    Anne Anne Anne Anne Annex 1: EVx 1: EVx 1: EVx 1: EVx 1: EVALALALALALUAUAUAUAUATION SCHEMETION SCHEMETION SCHEMETION SCHEMETION SCHEME(Based on Joiners model: 1990)

    I. BASIC INFORMAI. BASIC INFORMAI. BASIC INFORMAI. BASIC INFORMAI. BASIC INFORMATION TION TION TION TION Title of the videocourse:_____________________________Title of the sequence: _______________________________Length: _____________________Format/standard: VHS __ BETAMAX __ UMATIC/PAL __ SECAM __ NTSC __Aids: What aids does it have? Tick where appropriate.Script ____Study guide ____Teachers guide ____Suggested segmentation ____Test ____Audio cassettes ____Other (specify)_______________________

    II. GENERAL CHARACTERISTICSII. GENERAL CHARACTERISTICSII. GENERAL CHARACTERISTICSII. GENERAL CHARACTERISTICSII. GENERAL CHARACTERISTICSTTTTTick the worick the worick the worick the worick the word/phrases that applyd/phrases that applyd/phrases that applyd/phrases that applyd/phrases that apply.....CategorCategorCategorCategorCategoryyyyyTo which of the following categories does the sequence belong to?Oral communication ___Cultural information ___Other (specify) _________Purpose Purpose Purpose Purpose Purpose What is the purpose of the text?What is the purpose of the text?What is the purpose of the text?What is the purpose of the text?What is the purpose of the text?to inform ___to instruct ___to entertain ___ to persuade ___to provoke ___to stimulate ___TTTTTarararararget grget grget grget grget groupoupoupoupoupIs it intended for general English students? ___ Is it intended for English for specific purposes Students? ___

    Linguistic and cultural assumptions with respect to viewers/listenersLinguistic and cultural assumptions with respect to viewers/listenersLinguistic and cultural assumptions with respect to viewers/listenersLinguistic and cultural assumptions with respect to viewers/listenersLinguistic and cultural assumptions with respect to viewers/listenersIs it addressed toIs it addressed toIs it addressed toIs it addressed toIs it addressed to beginners ___

    Intermediate ___Advance ___Native speakers ___

    Do the students need to be familiarized with the culture? ___Can it be used to teach culture? ___

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    III. TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICSIII. TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICSIII. TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICSIII. TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICSIII. TECHNICAL CHARACTERISTICSTick the words that apply.Quality of imagesQuality of imagesQuality of imagesQuality of imagesQuality of imagesBlurred ___Too contrasted ___Too bright ___Clear ___Quality of sound trackQuality of sound trackQuality of sound trackQuality of sound trackQuality of sound trackInaudible ___Noisy ___Sharp ___Editing of video Editing of video Editing of video Editing of video Editing of video Non-professional ___Professional ___

    IVIVIVIVIV. LINGUISTIC AND P. LINGUISTIC AND P. LINGUISTIC AND P. LINGUISTIC AND P. LINGUISTIC AND PARALINGUISTIC CHARACTERISTICSARALINGUISTIC CHARACTERISTICSARALINGUISTIC CHARACTERISTICSARALINGUISTIC CHARACTERISTICSARALINGUISTIC CHARACTERISTICSImageImageImageImageImageTick where appropriate.SocietySocietySocietySocietySocietyThe society is depicted as:Historical ___Old fashioned ___Up-to-date ___Body languageBody languageBody languageBody languageBody languageAre the gestures and body languageSpontaneous? ___Rehearsed? ___Overacted? ___Credible? ___ClothesClothesClothesClothesClothesDoes the type of clothes tell the viewers something about the role and social status ofthe characters? ___Sociocultural grSociocultural grSociocultural grSociocultural grSociocultural groupsoupsoupsoupsoupsWhat levels of society can you identify? ___________What age groups are presented? ___________What professions and occupations? _______________SettingSettingSettingSettingSettingCan the setting be easily identified? Yes No MovementMovementMovementMovementMovementDoes it help to understand the text? ___ Does it act as distracter? ___Does the sequence have stills? ___

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    SpeakSpeakSpeakSpeakSpeakersersersersersHow many speakers are on screen?one ___ two ___ more than two ___

    VVVVV. SOUND TRACK/SCRIPT. SOUND TRACK/SCRIPT. SOUND TRACK/SCRIPT. SOUND TRACK/SCRIPT. SOUND TRACK/SCRIPTTTTTTick where apprick where apprick where apprick where apprick where appropriate.opriate.opriate.opriate.opriate.Rate of deliverySlow ___ Fairly slow ___Normal ___Fast ___Very fast ___Quality of articulationQuality of articulationQuality of articulationQuality of articulationQuality of articulationIncomprehensible ___ Fairly comprehensible ___Clear ___Very clear ___VVVVVoiceover (off screen) naroiceover (off screen) naroiceover (off screen) naroiceover (off screen) naroiceover (off screen) narrationrationrationrationrationNo use of voice over ___Very little use of voice over ___Frequent use of voice over ___Extensive use of voice over ___Density of languageDensity of languageDensity of languageDensity of languageDensity of languageIs the flow controlled? ___uncontrolled? ___Does turn taking sound natural? ___unnatural? ___Music/sound effectsMusic/sound effectsMusic/sound effectsMusic/sound effectsMusic/sound effectsDo the music/sound effectshelp comprehension? ___act as distracters? ___Relationship between image soundRelationship between image soundRelationship between image soundRelationship between image soundRelationship between image soundThe visual support: Matches the verbal commentary ___Conflicts with the verbal commentary ___Acts as a distracter ___Can stand by itself ___Is essential for the verbal commentary ___The verbal supportThe verbal supportThe verbal supportThe verbal supportThe verbal supportThe message is primarily verbal? ___The verbal support is helpful? ___acts as a distracter ___is essential ___

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    The verbal and the visual support are redundant? ___complementary? ___

    VI. LVI. LVI. LVI. LVI. LANGUAGE CONTEXTANGUAGE CONTEXTANGUAGE CONTEXTANGUAGE CONTEXTANGUAGE CONTEXTLanguage systemLanguage systemLanguage systemLanguage systemLanguage systemIs the sequence useful to teach:Phonology(specify)__________________________________________Grammar What structures:___________________________________Vocabulary What items:_______________________________________Which language functions can be taught through the sequence?Name them:_______________________________________What kind of English is taught? British ___ American ___AccentAccentAccentAccentAccentR.P pronunciation ___Regional ___Mixed ___RegisterRegisterRegisterRegisterRegisterIs the language used:Formal ___Informal ___Familiar ___Technical ___Other(specify) _______________TTTTTypes of spokypes of spokypes of spokypes of spokypes of spoken languageen languageen languageen languageen languageIs the speech natural? ___ Is the speech limited by the topic? ___Is it written to be orally presented ___Is it a rehearsed script? ___SyllabusSyllabusSyllabusSyllabusSyllabusDoes it fit into the syllabus? ___Is it useful to reach the goals? ___motivate the students? ___Class timeClass timeClass timeClass timeClass timeHow much class time should it take up? ______