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My ResearchEd session in Oxford on April 1st.

I was honoured to be invited by Tom Bennett to talk at the ResearchEd event on English and MFL in Oxford on April 1st.

If you'd like to attend, other MFL folk there will be Gianfranco Conti, Joe Dale, Jess Lund, David Shanks and Crista Hazell, to name a few.

Here is the link for booking:

http://www.researched.org.uk/event/researched-english-and-mfl/

And here is the summary of the session I'll be delivering:


MFL teaching; it’s not what you do. it’s the way that you do it.

This session begins by looking at what is meant by “principled eclecticism” in this so-called post-methods era of language teaching. The history of second language teaching methods is briefly discussed with a focus on the dichotomy of conscious and sub-conscious acquisition. Is learning a second language the same as learning a first language or is it the same as acquiring any skill? Scholars such as Krashen, VanPatten, Long, Lightbown, Spader and Nick Ellis will be referred to. Is there a “third way” which can combine the best of skill-building and natural comprehension approaches? The limitations of research in our field will be mentioned and reference will be made to particular methods, such as TPRS, communicative and bilingual approaches. After discussing the recent Teaching Schools Council report on methodology and the danger of cherry-picking research, it will be suggested that teacher beliefs and generic teacher delivery skills (such as those described by Lemov) may be more important than any language teaching method.


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