If you want to know what Demand High is (and isn’t) – read the original explanatory front page here: https://demandhighelt.wordpress.com/what-is-demand-high/
Where Are We Now?
We’ve been quiet on this blog and Facebook for a while. But our inquiry (and our tea-drinking) has continued while we have been running Demand High seminars and workshops in many countries. This has given us feedback and experience to integrate and build on.
So … Where is DH now? Here’s a quick overview of DH to date (January 2015).
We launched the Demand High meme at IATEFL in March 2012. We argued that communicative language teaching had painted itself into a corner, encouraging a lot of “fun” and familiar ritualised activity types, work groupings and materials but with limited apparent engagement with the “dirty” part of dealing with language and learning, and so on. We suggested ways of dealing with these issues, but people kept saying: “OK, this is interesting – but what can we DO?”
In our workshops we started to offer a wider range of focussed practical chalk-face techniques, examples and guidance. Yet even when we did this we found it challenging to capture the essence of DH in a way that was demonstrable in conference plenaries or one hour workshops, because what we were talking about was a facet of live teaching that is by definition hard to catch.
So now we are wondering. Can we formulate something more concrete and accessible for classroom teachers? Something that teachers, can, if they wish, read about and then take into class and try? Not just a set of raw ideas but detailed guidelines for teaching.
So this is where we are now (perhaps)…
• Demand High is the meme – the raw idea that we can ask more of our students, that we can challenge them and base our teaching around going where the learning is, working at each individual’s learning edge. We still encourage every teacher to experiment with that simple but challenging starting point in their own contexts with their own students.
• Alongside that we are now intend to develop something we will provisionally call Learning-Centred Teaching – (yes, learning) a set of clearly-stated ideas and concrete practical classroom techniques that teachers can read and experiment with.
Over the coming months, please read, join in and help us find out where this is going and whether it’s useful.