The Primary English Language Curriculum Guide (CDI, 2004) promotes ‘the use of a range of language arts materials such as songs, rhymes, poems, tongue twisters and plays’ to provide opportunities for learners to ‘give expression to real and imaginative experiences’ (p. 178), develop ‘cultural awareness and generic skills, in particular, critical thinking skills and creativity’ and ‘interest and a positive attitude towards learning a second language.’ (p. 179). However, it is a long-established practice for the majority primary language teachers of Hong Kong to adopt the ‘teaching the textbook’ approach, which does not allow for a lot of creative or innovative teaching and hence it does not facilitate the implementation of the proposed curriculum innovations. Teachers who wish to support the innovations often find it difficult to change their existing beliefs and practices due to their lack of conceptual understanding and appropriate instructional strategies of language arts. This practical session presents the application of a few relatively ‘new’ and ‘challenging’ language arts activities such as reader’s theatre and drama to develop the language competence and the instructional strategies of practicing teachers who undertook a Language Arts module of a professional development programme. Recorded performances will also be shown to supplement discussion.
|Publication status||Published - Dec 2004|