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‘Teach Language Creatively’
Learning rules of grammar alone does not ensure good communication skills. When a language is used for communication, learners unconsciously acquire grammar.
Learning happens by doing, K. Chellappan, former Head, Department of English, Bharathidasan University, explained on Tuesday.
In literature, words carry multiple significance. Teachers should prompt learners to ask questions and interrogate the text. Teachers need to read poems aloud to make students alive to the sound pattern of poems.
With an understanding of the inter-locking of rhyme scheme and identification of the contrast begins evolution of idea, he said, delivering the key-note address at the inaugural of a UGC-sponsored refresher course in English at the Academic Staff College, Bharathidasan University.
The duty of language teachers was to make students creative. Language teachers alone can make students creative, “Lose yourselves in the subject. When you teach the subject well, it gives strength,” he advised the participants.
One has to learn using the language by communicating and exploring reality. Language is meant to supplement, explore and enhance reality, said Prof. Chellappan, who had also served as the Director of the State Institute of English.
It is important for universities to ensure that teachers are well-equipped. English ensures global citizenship.
It is not a language of conquest, but of quest. We can conquer conquerors by conquering English, Prof. Chellappan said.
The Course-coordinator and Head, Department of English, Bharathidasan University V.Ayothi said in his introductory address that the refresher programme titled ‘Recent Trends in Teaching English Language and Literature’ was directed at enabling the participants to gain the wisdom of knowing themselves.
N. Kalamani, Professor and Chair, School of Languages, observed that though technology has been integrated into teaching-learning, the human element in the process was of foremost importance.
A. Singaravel, Director In-Charge, Academic Staff College, said so far the institution had, since its start in the seventh five-year plan period, had conducted 143 programmes benefitting 2,250 teachers.