Introduction

Introduction

Annapurna Madhuri

 

Prelude

India is a vast country with dialects changing every few miles, with a wide range of languages spoken and accepted in each of its state.  Added to this is the enormous movement of people from one state to another mostly for work.  School children, who move along with their parents find it difficult to adjust themselves to the local school, offering the native official language as medium of instruction.  It is therfore necessary that the schools in India have a common medium of instruction, especially for the families which are on move.  English, as a common language plays a major role in bringing Indians under one umbrella.

Most Indian schools have English as medium of instruction, as preferred by large population. At the same time, there is a serious dearth of teachers who can efficiently communicate in English. Ill-prepared teachers with a feeling of inadequacy, find it difficult to handle classes even though they have a considerable command over their subject content, when it comes to teaching in the native language.  Lack of knowledge of proper English denies these teachers of having access to the large amount of information available at the click of a button.  In the current era where AI and VI are here to stay, fluency in English would not only help teachers to embed technology into their classroom practices but also to deliver their content in the most acceptable manner ensuring desirable learning outcomes.

Background:

Teaching in schools requires a decent understanding and use of sentence structures and vocabulary, particularly in schools having English as campus language as well as medium of instruction.  This is not only related to languages but also to the other school subjects like Mathematics and Sciences,  There is however, a common myth prevailing that English in STEM subjects is restricted to use of the technical terminology,  Nonetheless, this belief encourages the process of memorizing the concepts.  Critical thinking and creativity among children could be seriously restricted because of the language inadequacy among teaches.  ‘Effective English for teachers’ aims to help teachers to develop their language skills.  This could inturn improve quality of education provided in schools, especially in the rural, semi-urban areas, and in some urban schools.  This project would hence focus of working with aspiring teachers as well as in-service teachers to learn English as a second language, to ensure employment in the schools following English as both campus language as well as medium of instruction.

Key areas of focus:

The plan is to emphasize learning the basic sentence structures, at the basic, intermediate and advanced levels.  On similar lines, the plan is to work on vocabulary as well.  The main areas of focus are:
  • Spoken and written language and expression
  • Identifying importance of language across currirulum
  • Enhancing communication, building connections and collaboration
  • Relating explanations to evidence
  • Express naturally occuring phenomenon in appropriate English language

Suitable for:

All the people who have a deep interst in developing their English language skills.  The pre-requisite is that the learners need to have a basic beginner level vocabulary and minimal grammar knowledge.

Each chapter contains:

  • Introduction to the topic
  • Previous knowledge assessment
  • A quick read as an example to depic the focus of the chapter
  • Interactive exercises after explanation of each concept
  • Signal words and exercises related to signal words for practice
  • Affirmative, negative and interrogative sentence structures
  • Additional self check exercises.

Teaching – learning material:

For teacher educators as well as self-motivated, self-directed in-service as well as aspiting teachers, we plan to develop the project in different phases:

Phase 1: The basic beginner level to intermediate level, covering the basic, minimum requisites of knowledge of simple grammar and its use in sentence structures.

Phase 2: Developing intermediate to advanced level material including activities as well as audio – video clips and exercises in addiotion to power-point presentations.

Phase 3: Creating activities that could be used by teachers in the classroom, for improving language skills as well as life skills.

Acknowledgements: 

Firstly, I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the organizers and the team of the OE4BW, for having conceived, developed and brought to life this incredible idea of creating Open Education for a Better World.  This is indeed the need of the hour and undoubtedly a far-reaching idea, towards improving the quality of education and making the world a better place.

Heartfelt gratitude to my mentor Ms. Christina Page, for her continuous support, rendered during completion of the first phase of this project. Deep appreciation for your kind  endurance and patience in calmly ushering me through each of my draft, to go through each and every word, correcting each of the minutest of the errors, and providing suggestions in the most assertive manner, one could ever think of.  Your constant motivation has been a guiding force for me to work on this project.  Her guidance helped me in directed research and writing of this part of the module.  I could not have imagined having a better advisor and mentor for my project.

Besides my mentor, I would like to thank Ms. Jenny Heymann, to have coordinated throughout the entire period apart from providing insightful  guidelines and perspectives.

This is also a wonderful opportunity to thank Prof. Vasudha Kamat amd Prof. Jayashree Shinde.  This entire project would never be a happening, without you being my advisors and mentors.  Your guidance helped me during the time of initial phase of the project, including talking about how to attend to Skype calls to guiding on booking tickets and plan for the entire tour.  I could not have imagined having a better adviser and mentor for my study.

Special thanks to my brother Prof. Ramkrishna Pasumarthy, for the continuous support of my study and related research, not only for  all  your patience, motivation, immense knowledge, the insightful comments and encouragement, but also for the  thought provoking questions which incented me to widen my research from various perspectives and  to evolve my personality and advance me in my journey.

Besides, I would extend my sense of obligation to the management of SMIORE Academy for Teacher Training, and to Mr. Kumar Ranganathan, who has been instrumental in encouraging me to take up this project. Thank you so much sir, for putting me on the right track, recognizing and trusting my abilities.

The completion of this project could not have been accomplished without the support of my dearest friend, philosopher and guide, Raj, whose love, care and encouragement, made me strong when times got rough.  My heartfelt gratitude.

I would like to thank my beloved husband Cnu,  my ever-inspiring son Kanna, my parents, sisters, Shan and Jo, for emboldening me spiritually throughout writing this project.

Annapurna Madhuri.

 

License

Icon for the Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License

Introduction by Annapurna Madhuri is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License, except where otherwise noted.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

https://dx.doi.org/Effective English for Teachers

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