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19 September 2012

Beginners (Resource Books for Teachers)

eBooks | author: daddy | views: 335

Beginners (Resource Books for Teachers)

Beginners (Resource Books for Teachers)
1994 | ISBN-10: 0194372006 | PDF | 160 pages | 3,7 MB

All too often beginners are lumped together under the misleading epithet 'false beginners'. This book dismantles the twin myths which underlie this categorization.
The first of these is the convenient belief that there are no 'real' beginners any more. (Convenient because it allows us to get on with 'exciting' activities with learners, who can be presumed already to be in control of the basics.) This book confronts us with the awkward fact that there are still substantial numbers of real beginners, with problems of a quite different order from those experienced even by 'false' beginners.
The second myth is the belief that 'beginners' are a single category. In his acute and helpful analysis, Peter Grundy shows just how many different groups of beginners there are, each requiring subtly different approaches.
A constant problem with older beginners is the discrepancy between their relatively high levels of affective and cognitive development, and their low level of linguistic competence in the target language. This book is notably successful in showing how activities requiring very limited language can none the less be made cognitively and affectively challenging. In this way, beginning learners are enabled to bring their adult experiences to bear on the language they imperfectly command, without the loss of self-esteem and the sense of hopelessness which low-level materials all too often provoke.
There is a proper understanding of the very real and stubborn difficulties faced by beginners, especially when a new script is also involved. Chapter 5, 'Roman script', is a rare instance of a serious attempt to deal with this set of problems.
The book succeeds in being simultaneously innovative and realistic. It combines the best of communicative practice with the pragmatic realization that beginners cannot be expected to run before they have learnt to walk. In this it seems to me to have mastered 'the art of doing ordinary things extraordinarily well'.In my view, this book makes a significant contribution to a hitherto neglected area of professional concern.

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