A really brief discussion; this is based on what I have observed from students and the possible reasons why they act such way. How do we need to teach English?
Have you ever tried to ask a student in an English class to stand and answer a question – probably their opinion about a certain situation – and when they answer in Filipino, you would tell him to speak in English? What do they do when you tell them to answer in English? Some might still be confident in answering, but most of the students would just smile and stop answering the question because he believes that he can’t speak the language. Why is that?
FACT: Students are afraid to talk to native speakers of english because they tend to dwell, if not linger, more on the grammatical rules and structure. They are afraid that they might be wrong and get humiliated, well in fact grammar isn’t that particular when the language is spoken; and native speakers do not actually mind if the grammatical rules are well observed. Teaching English shouldn’t just stop at the rules and structures – have the students memorize it and pass the subject. English is taught for them to be good communicators, for them not to be intimidated, for them to be competent. So instead of teaching what, why not teach why and how? How are these used for effective communication? Through this, students will not just learn the language, but will also be able to confidently use it outside the classroom; and so they would definitely become competent.
So when your student gets out of the class, encounter a foreigner and asks him for directions, are you confident that your student will be able to anwser him confidently and not stumble and shrink as if he had never heard such language?
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