Category Archives for "Applied Linguistics"

1 – The Input Revolution

A Stressful Shaking I was taping a talk when it started. The room began to shake. I’ve been in many earthquakes, but this one was different. It started slowly, and it got bigger, louder, and meaner. I froze. “This is bad,” I said to myself. I knew it was time to “move to safety.” I […]

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2 – Old Grammar School

Teacher: It’s grammar time! Johnny, tell me the names of two pronouns. Johnny: What, who, me? We know that advanced speakers use grammar without thinking about rules. In fact, they may use the rules perfectly, but at the same time, they may have trouble explaining them. With Johnny above, he got the right answer by […]

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3 – The Direct Method’s Rule

Mary: Do you have trouble making decisions? Jim: Well…yes and no. Teachers make decisions. They decide about books, lessons, and methods. Methods often have guidelines or rules to help teachers make decisions. These rules make it easy to decide. But one method has a famous rule that we should sometimes break. The method is the […]

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5 – Teaching as Counseling

A man went to see a psychologist. The doctor said, “How can I help you?” The man said: “Doctor, I feel like nobody understands me.” The doctor said, “What do you mean by that?” A good psychologist listens. When a patient speaks, a psychologist often asks for more information. But in the above joke, we […]

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8 – Content is King

  Eight: Content is King It was just before the final test. Nervous students sat waiting for their history teacher to arrive. When she came, a student approached her. He said, “I have a question about my grade. What score do I need on the test to pass the class?” The teacher said, “Let me […]

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9 – Get the Job Done

9 – Get the Job Done: Task-Based Instruction A father looked at his lazy son. The young man always sat on the couch and played video games. The father sighed and said, “Why don’t you get a job?” The son replied, “Why should I get a job?” The father answered, “So you can earn some […]

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10 – Learn the Top Words First

All Words Are Not Equal We use some words many times every day. We call these “high frequency words.” We use other words maybe a few times a day. We call these “mid-frequency” words. And we use other words maybe once a month. We call these “low-frequency” words. These are non-scientific examples, used only to […]

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