The Many books, similar to Michelle Maxom’s Teaching English

The
achievement of knowledge in general and especially through studying or experience
is one of the longest and most complex processes that a human being undergoes
throughout his entire life. From individual study to classroom lessons and
shifting from a subject to another, multiple perspectives regarding teaching
and learning arise, varying accordingly to the type of subject at hand. While
hard sciences seem to require a more plain and specific step-by-step learning
process, humanities study may be open to a more creative and complex progress,
experiencing also exterior influences from sources such as the internet. For
this reason, there are many teaching and learning methods and classifications
in order to learn about history, art, or even foreign languages. The learning process of a foreign language
and its various teaching methods imply the use and improvement of the four
basic linguistic skills: listening, reading, writing and speaking.

Listening is the first method used in understanding and, eventually,
learning a foreign language. It is an active but silent course of action, the
learner focusing on the pronunciation and vocabulary gain through hearing. A
period of silent listening to the teacher is believed to be vital for language acquisition
and beneficial for future uses of the language in speaking. Furthermore, listening
is the easiest way to learn the logic rules, basic linking words, and
structures of the studied language, which can be different from those of the
native language. Because the short-term memory stores words separately, getting
familiar with these terms can boost the understanding and enhance the speaking
ability. Many books, similar to Michelle Maxom’s Teaching English as a Foreign Language for Dummies, talk about the
importance of the connection between words and gestures in learning new notions
of an unknown language: “In addition, the speaker’s body language varies
according to the needs of the situation. Most people use facial expressions
such as smiles and frowns to match their words and in addition, it’s normal to
point at things you’re referring to or to use emphatic gestures to stress
certain words.” (Maxom 197).
Listening can be facilitated by allowing the visibility of the speaker,
providing background clues, providing an interesting context, offering visual
support, and using listening understanding tools such as tapes, music, or
teachers. (Peace Corps 73)

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            Reading is a complementary
comprehension skill and proves to be very effective in connecting spoken words
to notions and grammatical constructions.

Now that you’re aware of how it all
fits together, you can make the text less intimidating for your students by
showing them these signposts. Reading in another language can seem really
daunting but once students know how to find their way around the text they
should be more positive about this skill, especially if they’re likely to enter
higher education in English. (Maxom 146)

Further abilities are generated from mastering this basic
skill, such as prediction of future information, summarizing content, reviewing
ideas, or handling vocabulary. Each helps in the more advanced stages of the
learning process and improve the future use of the foreign language both in
speaking and writing. In addition, as the authors of TEFL/TESL suggest, there is an everyday use comprehensive
motivation behind every learner desiring to study a foreign language: “…
reading tasks connected to everyday purposes will be motivating to students at
any level of the language curriculum” (Peace Corps 80).