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Communicative Language Teaching (CLT


• CLT was developed in the 1970s, and in critical reaction to the formal and boring types of exercises used under the audiolingual approach (‘drill-and-kill’ exercises). • CLT puts the focus on communicative interaction in class, not on a correct but mind- and meaningless reproduction of the linguistic forms prescribed for a specific lesson. • • CLT claims to represent a meaning- and learner-oriented approach to language teaching. CLT puts ‘fluency above accuracy’ (error tolerance).

• CLT goes together with social and political developments that call for emancipative and anti-authoritarian approaches to teaching

The theoretical background of CLT
• CLT reflects, on the theoretical side, pragmatic and cognitive approaches to the study of language. • Pragmalinguistic studies focus on the contexts which give language forms their context specific meaning. • People use language ‘to do things with words’ – not to show other people that they can correctly produce sentences in the past tense or passive voice, for instance. • Correspondingly it is important for ELT that students learn to use English for coping with tasks that come up in everyday communicative situations. That is called task based learning (handlungsorientiertes Lernen). Project work is an example. • Some people say that students must learn to put their notions (ideas) and their communicative intentions into words. They called for a ‘notional-functional syllabus’ to replace the formal syllabus. The communicative approach was championed in Germany by, for instance, E. Piepho: Piepho, H.-E. 1974, Kommunikative Kompetenz als übergeordnetes Lernziel im Englischunterricht. Dornburg-Frickhofen: Frankonius.

in class. at the same time.J. 1984." Applied Linguistics 1(2): 89-112. to an ‘enabler’. Communicative Methodology in Language Teaching. Breen. and who helps them cope with their learning problems.N. • With CLT the role of the teacher changes from that of an instructor who presents and makes the pupils learn the forms (grammar) prescribed by the syllabus. & Candlin. that is a person who makes it possible for the learners to say things in English. making sure that the learners’ communicative intentions are not frustrated by their lack of knowledge of words and phrases needed for saying what they want to say. the following books: Breen. M.In the English speaking world CLT is represented by. 1980. 1983. for instance. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. however. a situation that motivates the learners to use English while. and with their present communicative intentions. CLT leads to a compromise solution that aims to reconcile formoriented with meaning-oriented learning and teaching. M. C. "The Essentials of a Communicative Curriculum in Language Teaching. • Practically. How do we recognize a communicative language classroom. Brumfit. C. Dunford House Seminar. (Squaring the circle??) Textbooks and the matching of forms and functions . The didactic challenge in CLT • In CLT the challenge for the teacher is to create. • CLT requires a skilful choice of topics that match both with the words and phrases which the learners already know.


Pictures and the compromise of form.with functionoriented teaching .


• The new approach places the focus on learner autonomy. the consequence is that learners must learn to help themselves. Here is one example: .Task based learning and learner autonomy • If task based learning (TBL) is put at the centre of ELT. must stop to prescriptively instruct them which language forms they have to learn in what sequence. • An approach that puts the focus on learner autonomy must aim to promote and enhance learning strategies. and it must stop giving them formal exercises and tests to do. which aims to show learners how to help themselves. • The table of contents of recent textbooks reflect the manifold didactic demands which arise from that for textbook authors and teachers. • The new approach.


more time to learn the basics of communication in English (at the expense of subjects like geography. after about two years. • You find more information on CLIL on this website: http://www2.Content and Language Integrated Learning (CLIL) • The most recent approach which aims to reconcile form. the formal teaching of English is stopped but subjects like geography and history are now taught in English. • CLIL starts with giving learners.with meaning-oriented learning is . • Then. The German name is Bilingualer Sachfachunterricht.uni-wuppertal. history). at the start.