The book opens with key contributions from a number of leading scholars: Dr Daniel Cassany on critical literacies, Professor Henrik Gottlieb on translation into ‘minor’ languages, and Professor David Little on autonomy in language learning. These are followed by explorations of translation, technology, intercultural issues, autonomous learning and the European Language Portfolio. The volume represents an important contribution to the development of new plurilingual approaches to language teaching and learning.
Part Six Language Teaching
Linda Butler Building Autonomy in Language Learning through Drama As a pedagogical model, the communicative approach (CA) advocates for creative language learning spaces that are first and foremost, ‘present, exis- tential and concrete’ (Freire 1993: 76) to the learner. Numerous theoretical positions have informed language educators on language acquisition. The CA is one that asserts that language is essentially concerned with commu- nication. The principles of CA are based on experiential educational princi- ples put forward by educators such as Paulo Freire, Augusto Boal, Dorothy Heathcote and John Dewey (1916, 1968). Dewey validated the prior knowl- edge of learners asserting that, like children, they ‘come to school with all the experience got outside the school’ (2003: 50). Dewey calls for learner autonomy as an ‘outward action’ on the basis that ‘all human experience is ultimately social: it requires contact and communication’ (1938: 38). A central aspect of my teaching praxis is based on this premise; that learners define reality and develop learning that is rooted in their life expe- riences. As an experiential approach, CA through a drama lens can of fer learners the opportunity to articulate the view that reality in actuality, ‘is made, not found’ (Goodman 1978: front cover). That is to say, as an inter- ventionist practice, drama pedagogies can help learners create a ‘reality’ of language learning as an enjoyable experience that is fundamentally realistic in response to targets they can aim for. Most importantly, in contextual- izing drama to everyday life situations, drama can ef...
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