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Tuesday, October 31, 2006

~*Outline for Empirical Research*~

I. Abstract

II. Introduction
· The origin of the Direct Method
· How the Sesame Street Language School in Taiwan apply the Direct Method fully in their teaching and teaching materials
· Is really the Direct Method harmful to the foreign language teaching?
· The full use of the Direct Method in teaching must be beneficial and suitable to the 7-13 year-old Taiwanese EFL learners.

III. Review of Literature

IV. Methodology
A. Subjects
- Five students who are 13-year-old study in the highest level (stage F) in Sesame Street Language School.
- Five students who are 13-year-old study in the highest level in one of the big chain English cram school.
- Three experienced Chinese teachers who have been taught in Sesame Street Language School for more than 4 years.
- Three experienced Chinese teachers who have been taught in one of the big chain cram school for more than 4 years.

B. The instruments and its procedures
- Questionnaires for the 6 Chinese teachers
- Tests for the 10 students

C. Data Analysis

V. Findings and Discussion

VI. Conclusion

VII. References
~*The Setence Outline*~

I. Abstract
I will collect the teaching materials of the big chain English cram schools
which are Hess, Joy, Giraffe and the Sesame Street therefore I can compare them more thoroughly in the way they use full and partial Direct Method. Furthermore I will analyze how the teaching materials, discipline and teaching of the Sesame Street Language School apply Direct Method fully. After that I will collect the data that is about the Direct Method can only be a pseudo method due to its lack of theoretical basis such as Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching this book has mentioned or the data that has bad comments on Direct Method such as Nagel Mark, Kuo, Yun-Chen and Jack C. Richards & Theodore S. Rodgers’s researches and the data that has positive view of Direct Method using. Moreover after the survey which is the questionnaires for the 6 Chinese teachers who have been taught in Sesame Street Language School and one of the big chain cram school for more than 4 years and Tests for the 10 students who are 13-year-old study in the highest level in Sesame Street Language School (stage F) and one of the big chain English cram school. Finally, the research will come to the discussion and conclusion part.

II. Introduction
Most of the English cram schools in Taiwan uses partial Direct Method as their teaching methodology except the Sesame Street Language School apply it fully in their teaching materials and teaching discipline. Besides the purpose of knowing how the Sesame Street Language School apply the Direct Method completely in terms of their teaching materials and teaching discipline, I also want to know which way is more suitable for the 7-13 year-old Taiwanese learners of English – full use of Direct Method or partial use of Direct Method? Is really Direct Method harmful to the EFL learners like Nagel Mark (1998) said? There must be a reason that the Sesame Street Language School in Taiwan insists on using full Direct Method in teaching and that must be beneficial and suitable to the 7-13 year-old Taiwanese EFL learners.

III. Review of Literature
In this part I will talk about the background and origin of the Direct Method, the researches have bad comments on Direct Method and the researches have good comments on Direct Method.

IV. Methodology
A. Subjects
1. Five students who are 13-year-old study in the highest level (stage F) in Sesame Street Language School.
2. Five students who are 13-year-old study in the highest level in one of the big chain English cram school.
3. Three experienced Chinese teachers who have been taught in Sesame Street Language School for more than 4 years.
4. Three experienced Chinese teachers who have been taught in one of the big chain cram school for more than 4 years.

B. The instruments and its procedures
1. Questionnaires for the 6 Chinese teachers who have been taught in Sesame Street Language School and one of the big chain cram schools for more than 4 years.
2. Tests for the 10 students who are 13-year-old study in the highest level in Sesame Street Language School and one of the big chain English cram school.

C. Data Analysis
I can get the information that is about the existing obstacles of applying full Direct Method from the questionnaires of the Chinese teachers and the learning result from the tests of the students.
V . Findings and Discussion
The findings of the existing obstacles of using full Direct Method and the ways that may help remove these difficulties.

VI. Conclusion
The full use of the Direct Method can be beneficial and suitable to the 7-13 year-old learners of English in Taiwan. The teaching materials that designed base on the Direct Method can help the learners of English. We can not judge the Direct Method because of a few fail cases. We have to know the way the teachers or the language schools apply the Direct Method. We can not make comments to the teaching methodology only; its teaching materials are also the factors that we have to consider. The complete cooperation with the Direct Method of the teaching materials is a key point to the success of the use of the Direct Method. If we only apply the Direct Method in teaching not the teaching materials, the learners of English of course have difficulties in learning. Teaching materials and teaching methodology should complement each other. The scholars before that made bad comments on the Direct Method generally focus on the teaching method only and neglected the complement and cooperation of the teaching materials which is very subjective.

VII. References

Jack, C. R., & Theodore, S. R. (2001). Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching. The United States of America: Cambridge University Press

Kuo, Yun-Chen. The Use of Mother Tongue in Second Language Class. Retrieved, from http://web.nutn.edu.tw/gac620/book/88%AF%C5%BE%C7%A5%CD%
B1M%C3D/6-2.htm

Nagel, Mark (1998). Direct Method Is Harmful For English Teaching. Kuo Chiao Tien Ti Journal. Retrieved May, 1998, fromhttp://readopac2.ncl.edu.tw/ncl3/
search_result.jsp?input_str=%E7%9B%B4%E6%8E%A5%E6%95%99%E5%AD%B8%E6%B3%95&all=KW&la=c

Sunday, October 22, 2006

~*MY RESEARCH PROPOSAL*~

The Cover Page:
How do the teaching method and teaching materials of Sesame Street in Taiwan fully apply Direct Method?
By Wu, Charlene
1094100026
Wenzao Ursuline College of Languages

The Contents:
I. Abstract


Despite all the strengths of the Direct Method; this old fashioned teaching pedagogy has been criticized from time to time. Surprisingly the Sesame Street Language School in Taiwan uses it fully in terms of teaching materials, procedures and principles while the other big chain English cram schools for example Joy, Hess and Giraffe only adopt Direct Method as part of their teaching methodology. And most specially is that compared to the pictured and wordy beginners’ textbooks of the other big chain English cram schools, the Sesame Street Language School does not show beginners any words in textbooks and only ask beginners to listen and to speak. Therefore we can see that the Sesame Street Language School thoroughly applies the Direct Method. Why does the Sesame Street Language School so insist on implementing the Direct Method completely without concerning its disadvantages and not just follow the other big chain English cram schools? Is using the entire Direct Method really suitable for the 7 to 13 year-old learners of English in Taiwan?

II. Purpose Statement

Due to my observation and teaching experiences in the big chain English cram schools in Taiwan, I am mesmerized by the wild using of Direct Method in the big chain English cram schools in Taiwan. And the difference of using full Direct Method and partial Direct Method makes me think the effect and suitableness of using the full Direct Method.

III . Statement of Qualification

I have taught in one of the Sesame Street Language Schools in Taiwan before and I have seen many successful cases during that time. And later I also get in touched with other different English cram schools such as Hess, Giraffe and Joy. I soon found out the differences between these English cram schools- the full and partial using of Direct Method. In my teaching years I deeply feel that the 7-13 year-old students really benefited in the full using of the Direct Method compared to the partial using of Direct Method. The students developed their direct thinking in English so they were able to follow the teachers’ orders in terms of grammar or vocabulary and sentence explanation. To my surprise there were some critics deny this and chose to against the full using of the Direct Method.

IV. Review of the Literature


Gouin was the beginner of the Direct Method. The philosophy of this methodology is making foreign language learning like mother tongue learning. And because of that the Direct Method sometimes was called a “natural” method. The Direct Method believes that language learners can acquire the meaning through demonstration and action without translation. And the learned words can be used to teach new words. L. Sauveur (1826-1907) later used natural principles and made a strong emphasize on oral interaction. He opened a language school in Boston and his method quickly became the Natural Method. F. Franke even indicated that the foreign language is best taught in using it intensively in class. The Direct Method was quite popular in France, Germany and the United States. Regardless of the success and supports of the Direct Method, there are still controversies and criticism upon it. For example, Nagel Mark (1998) has mentioned that despite the students can understand the meaning of words from the pictures but they still add Chinese definition to the English words. In order not to let the students get the wrong meaning of words, and translate words by words; it would better for the teachers to translate straight for them. Moreover the Direct Method forbid the students to use Chinese even when is asking questions so many students often are unable to make questions when they have problems about grammar due to their deficiencies of English. Consequently they cannot always get the answers from asking. (pp.51-52). Jack C. Richards & Theodore S. Rodgers (1986) also said that Direct Method over emphasizes and twist the similarity between the natural mother tongue learning and the foreign language learning. Furthermore, the Direct Method lacks for the reality in the classroom and the foundation of applied linguistics theory (p.10). Kuo, Yun-Chen in his research has stated that sometimes a short explanation in mother tongue is the efficient way to the students questions but the teachers of the Direct Method ask the students to avoid using their mother tongue. In that way the teachers spend more time on the unimportant meaning of words and miss the purpose of the communication of meaning.

V. Description of my research methods

This paper will examine the ways how the Sesame Street Language School applies the Direct Method and also the result of it. The Method section will explore how the 7-13 year-old students learn in listening, speaking, reading and writing four different ways in the Sesame Street Language School and also the 7-13 year-old students in one of the big chain English cram schools in Taiwan. The Subjects section will examine the 7-13 year-old students who study and have the highest level in the Sesame Street Language School and one of the big chain English cram schools in Taiwan. The Procedures section examines the learning result in these two English cram school— the Sesame Street Language School and one big chain English cram school. The Results section explains the result— using the Direct Method to design a completely system of teaching materials can make the Direct Method suitable for the 7-13 year-old learners of English in Taiwan. The Discussion section explores an objective analysis from the experiment— which may contains the possible existing weakness of using full Direct Method and the ways may be improved or my personal criticize and thought.

VI. References


Jack, C. R., & Theodore, S. R. (2001). Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching. The United States of America: Cambridge University Press

Kuo, Yun-Chen. The Use of Mother Tongue in Second Language Class. Retrieved, from http://web.nutn.edu.tw/gac620/book/88%AF%C5%BE%C7%A5%CD%
B1M%C3D/6-2.htm

Nagel, Mark (1998). Direct Method Is Harmful For English Teaching. Kuo Chiao Tien Ti Journal. Retrieved May, 1998, fromhttp://readopac2.ncl.edu.tw/ncl3/
search_result.jsp?input_str=%E7%9B%B4%E6%8E%A5%E6%95%99%E5%AD%B8%E6%B3%95&all=KW&la=c

Sunday, October 15, 2006

~*BOOK REFERENCES*~

Jack, C. R., & Theodore, S. R. (2001). Approaches and Methods in Language Teaching. The United States of America: Cambridge University Press

This book clearly introduces information about the DM in terms of beginner, philosophy, principles, procedures, strength and criticizes.

Gerald S. L. (1994). Children and Television Lessons from Sesame Street. Taipei: Yuan-Liou

The author analysis the children television program “Sesame Street” by depicting the producing motivation, basic purpose, producing skills, result of the evaluation and the factors of success.

TO BE CONTINUED...

Saturday, October 07, 2006

~*ONLINE REFERENCES*~

Chen, Pei- Chen (2006, October). Direct Method. Teaching Method. Retrieved February, 2001, from http://content.edu.tw/senior/english/tp_tt/teachmethod/directmethod.htm
This is a short research about the Direct Method. The contents are the
History background and origin of the Direct Method , the philosophy of the Direct Method, teaching materials, teaching method and the conclusion and the introspection
.

Nagel, Mark (1998). Direct Method Is Harmful For English Teaching. Kuo Chiao Tien Ti Journal. Retrieved May, 1998, from http://readopac2.ncl.edu.tw/ncl3/search_result.jsp?input_str=%E7%9B%B4%E6%8E%A5%E6%95%99%E5%AD%B8%E6%B3%95&all=KW&la=c

He talks about the bad effects about the using of Direct Method for instance, the wrong meaning of words the students may get through the principle of no Chinese and the inability of asking questions about grammar.

The Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. Sesame Street access by 2006. Retrieved October 5 2006, from http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sesame_Street
This website reveals the information about Sesame Street for example, the overview, history of the show, broadcast history, characters, cast and crew, regional variations of the show, merchandising and endorsement, movies, videos, specials, criticism, rumors and urban legends…etc.

The Head Office of Sesame English Franchised, Taiwan. The Origin And Development of Sesame English access by 2006, from http://www.sesamestreet.com.tw/Sesame01/index.htm
This is the official website of the head office of Sesame English franchised in Taiwan so it includes the origin and development of Sesame English in Taiwan, the introduction of the Muppets and teaching materials…etc.

The Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. Category:Sesame Street access by 2006. Retrieved August 31 2006, from
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Category:Sesame_Street
This is the category of Sesame Street.

Sunday, October 01, 2006

*TOPIC:
How do the teaching method and teaching materials of Sesame Street in Taiwan apply Direct Method?

*LISTING OF WORDS/ QUESTIONS
Sesame Street, Direct Method, introduced, teaching method, teaching materials, textbooks, organized, encounter, Emmy Awards, steps...etc
1. When was the Sesame Street English introduced in Taiwan?
2. What is the background of the Sasame Street in America?
3. How are the teaching materials of the Sesame Sreet in Taiwan designed? in what way?
4. How many levels of the Sesame Street in Taiwan divided into?
5. What is the teaching philosophy of the Sesame Street in Taiwan?
6. How the Sesame Street in Taiwan better the Direct Method?
7. What difficulties do the Sesame Street in Taiwan sitll encounter?
8. How the Sesame Street in Taiwan work through the difficulties?
....etc

*PRELIMINARY OUTLINE:
1. The start of the Sesame Street in America.
2. When was the Sesame Street introduced in Taiwan.
3. The analysis of the teaching method and teaching materials of the Sesame Street in listening, speaking, reading and writing four different ways in Taiwan.
4. The theory of Direct Method.
5. The strengths and weakness of Direct Method.
6. The ways that the Sesame Street in Taiwan use to improve the weakness of Direct method.
7. The good outcome of the improved Direct Method that the Sesame Street in Taiwan uses and the evidence.
8. The still existing difficulties of the improved Direct Method that the Sesame Street in Taiwan uses and the evidence.
9. The methods that may be used to better the sitll existing difficulties.
...ect

*WRITING A THESIS:
Despite all the criticism of the Direct Method, the Sesame Street in Taiwan still uses it as the foundation of the teaching philosophy. The Sesame Street has been in Taiwan since 1985 and it has 168 branches in Taiwan in its golden period. The ways, reasons and result that it apply the Direct Method may be worth for us to explore.

*WRITING A THESIS: Despite all the criticism of the Direct Method, the Sesame Street in Taiwan still uses it as the foundation of the teaching philosophy. http://www.sesamestreet.com.tw/Sesame01/index.htm The Sesame Street has been in Taiwan since 1985 and it has 168 branches in Taiwan in its golden period. Its success tells us that the Direct Method is suitable for 7-12 year-old EFL Taiwaness students.