Doing Delta Module Two? Could Demand-High be your Alternative Practice?

If you are doing Delta Module 2, you might want to consider Demand High for your Alternative Practice assignment.

Here are a few suggestion: Is Demand High useful for Delta Module 2 (004b)

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4 responses to “Doing Delta Module Two? Could Demand-High be your Alternative Practice?

  1. chazpugliese

    I love the concept. It’s refreshing to hear you think DH is not a method, but rather, a meme. Who needs another method? it’s not even a technique, I don’t think. Techniques are shallow. Teaching, after all, is about being with fellow human beings, and that, when done seriously, is never shallow. Challenging the students seems to be the key element: I find this a central issue in education, and couldn’t agree more. How do we challenge our students? And what does challenging our students mean? This concept could be appraoched from several angles. Hungarian psychologist M. Csikszentmihalyi (of Flow fame) spent a few decades investigating it. For a task to present an optimal challenge, he says, a perfect point of equilibrium should be reached between the current level of knowledge and the outcome. When that happens, we’re sufficiently challenged and we enter a state of flow, pure bliss. I would agree. But I suspect it’s not the whole story. As someone who likes writing exercises for kicks, for me it means challenging my students is about using my imagination to come up with an exercise that works on several layers, lasagne-style. There should be language involved, obviously, but the exercise should also include an element of growth. The student, in other words, is challenged if the exercise makes them stretch beyond the language and makes them, dare I say it, think. This, I believe, results in heigthened quality of the (language) learning experience. In this sense, Paulo Freire’s work can be considered challenging. Gattegno’s work is challenging. Rinvolucri’s work is challenging.

  2. I would suggest that the issue for Demand High teaching or Dogme does not lie in alternative practice as such or technique, but in the language module. The language module (and indeed CELTAs before it) still tend to emphasise a grammar + words view of language and with a canonical view of grammar. Yet when we look at students trying to push themselves to express their ideas, inevitably it involves a much more lexical view of language: starting with the words (not the ‘grammar’!) and attempting to build these into sentences. That requires a very language aware kind of teacher, who can understand the meaning (from often ‘incorrect’ words and incomplete grammar, reformulating it (or reminding students of the ‘correct’ word), explaining / exemplifying why one is OK but the other is not, looking for an opportunity to expand or show how other students may re-use the language. This will tend to require a good awareness of collocation and other aspects of usage, drawing attention to chunks and patterns which typically do not fit into the canonical view (though obviously it will include tenses and the like at times). Being able to do this well takes practice and, I think, training, but it is not clear to me that current teacher education teaches that kind of language awareness.

  3. Pingback: Demand High ELT – is it really something new? | DELTA Course Blog

  4. Pingback: Demand High – A Delta Experimental Practice (Simon Richardson) | Demand High ELT

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