A series of questions springing from the History of EFL text to start you reflecting on your teaching or just to bandy around with colleagues to gain some insights.
1. What is your favourite communicative activity? What is its primary aim and how do you organise it? What feedback have you received from your students? Why do you like this particular activity?
2. What has been your worst learning experience? How does it affect the way in which you teach today?
3. How could we use phrase books in today's classroom?
4. The History of EFL text gives one example of Latinate grammar which is not compatible with the English language. Can you think of any others?
5. How can we make writing communicative in our classrooms today?
6. Think of ways we can tap into our students' powers of memory.
7. How do you use dictation in your classes? Give at least two examples.
8. What are the advantages and disadvantages of L1 use in the classroom?
9. What criticisms can you level at the Audiolingual methodology of constant repetition?
10. Why is the name Hornby so famous in EFL today?
11. The History of EFL text gives one example of an incorrect grammar rule often heard in EFL classrooms. Can you think of any incorrect grammar EFL rules? What is the advantage of such rules?
12. What is a grammar based syllabus? What would be the first five units in a grammar based syllabus for complete beginners?
13. What do you understand by the term "Behaviourism"?
14. What is wrong with correcting every error? How do you use correction in your classes - both written and oral?
15. Give examples from your own teaching for when you use substitution tables and drilling. What do you consider the most effective form of drilling?
16. What do you know about universal grammars and transformational grammar in particular?
17. The Cognitive code broke down language into grammar, lexis and phonology. How would you break down the language? Think about how your students see your classes and the way they see you have broken down the language.
18. How comfortable are you about showing rules, presenting grammar and letting students work out rules in class? Give examples of each when you have not felt so comfortable.
19. What activities do you use which are based on the principles of guided discovery?
20. How has the EEC affected language teaching in the latter part of this century? Has it been positive or negative in your opinion?
21. How often do you teach functional exponents in your classes? Do you consider them necessary and which is your favourite functional class?
22. What do you know about the work of Widdowson?
23. What is PPP? Do you use it? What are the advantages and disadvantages of this approach?
24. What do you consider to be the most important values we have gained from the humanistic approaches? How are these values reflected in the way you teach?
25. What do you understand by the term individual learning strategies? How do you help your students develop theirs?
26. What do you understand by 'interaction' and 'discourse'? Do you think the use / usage distinction is a useful one?
27. What is the accuracy versus fluency debate? How does it affect your classroom teaching practices?
28. How can we be researching professional teachers? What would you like to research in your classrooms over the next few months?
29. List five different ways you use correction in the classroom. What factors help you decide which correctional method to employ in any given situation?
30. When do you use needs analysis in your classes? How does it help you plan and teach your classes? If you have not used needs analysis, how do you think it could be beneficial to your classroom practice?
31. What is TPR? How would you use it in your classes?
32. What is your position on the teaching of lexis? Do you teach vocabulary in a structured way or ad hoc as it appears in the coursebook and supplementary materials?
33. What grammatical structures lend themselves to being learnt like vocabulary? Why?
34. What do you see as your primary role in the classroom? Are you a facilitator or a judge or something else?
35. What are 'simulations'? What is the difference between a simulation and a role play?
36. What technology do you believe will bring about the greatest change in our profession? How and why?
37. What is interlanguage? Why is the study of interlanguage so important for us as EFL professionals?
38. Give an example of a lesson you have taught which looks at the discourse of language at a textual level. What did the students gain from such an approach?
39. Do you agree that we have to change our methodology to suit the needs of our students? Or should we train our students to work with our methodology?
40. Which factors do you believe are paramount for a student to succeed in learning a language?
41. What is test - teach - test? When have you used this approach and what was the reaction of the students?
42. Which EFL authors have you drawn on most heavily? Why? Give examples of activities you have adapted from them and made your own.