The Communicative Language Teaching Reflection Essay

In the world today, learning English is more like a duty in order to adapt with the new era of modernization and globalization. This is the reason why lots of people want to improve their English. The global demand for English has made huge demand for quality language teaching and language teaching materials and resources.

In the language teaching and learning nowadays, Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) is the most common approach that being used for. As a student of English Education, also being a future English teacher soon, I have also been taught about Communicative Language Teaching in one of the lesson; TEFL.. In this essay, I want to tell about what I understand about CLT and the implementation in Indonesia. What I have been taught about Communicative Language Teaching is CLT is one of the learning approaches, which is being influence from Socio-Cognitive Theory or Socio-cultural Theory by M. Swain.

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Communicative language teaching can be understood as a set of principles about the goals of language teaching, how learners learn a language, the kinds of classroom activities that best facilitate learning, and the roles of teachers and learners in the classroom. It is based on the theory that the primary function of language use is communication. Its primary goal is for learners to develop communicative competence (Hymes 1971). However, communication not only stands for oral skill, but also in written. It focuses on interaction of the student either orally or writing.

In CLT, the students get input by listening and reading (receptive skill), and there will be interaction among them to execute the information or the material and finally, they will give an output in speaking or writing (productive skill). It means CLT can cover all the language skills and grammar will be taught implicit. In CLT, the material is designed to train the analytical and critical thinking of the learners, so it will improve their English skill not only the language itself but to use the language in various functions and purposes.

In the classroom, CLT often takes the type of pair and group work requiring negotiation and cooperation between/among learners. The activities that used in CLT can include role play, interview, surveys, games and many more that will stimulate the learners to be more active. To this point, I think CLT is really good one for teacher to use, because it can train all language skills and improve learners’ analytical and critical thinking and their knowledge will increase just by learning language using this approach.

Furthermore, there are methodologies that can be portrayed as the extension of CLT movement that focuses more on the product of learning as the starting point in lessons plan than on classroom process. In Indonesia, the method that being used is Text-Based Instruction especially in the new curriculum 2013. Text-based Instruction also recognized as genre-based instruction is learning method that put center of learning language by mastering various kinds of text.

By studying the text, whether it is spoken or written, they can learn the grammatical, structure, vocabulary from the text and also analyze, discuss and solve the problem of the text, and I assume in the end they can produce their own work from that. There are twelve genres should be taught at Senior High School in Indonesia, they are recount, report, discussion, explanation, exposition analytical, exposition hortatory, news item, anecdote, narrative, procedure, description and review (depdiknas, 2005).

Talking about that, the question will come into view. Is the Text-Based Instruction (TBI) is able to fulfill the demand and interest of students? For the students in Indonesia, I do not think so. Personally, I reflect the text-based instruction is not proper to apply in Indonesia yet. Why? The first one is, by looking at the Indonesia students’ interest about reading is low. How do we expect them to mastering the text while the interest to read is low?

I am also afraid that the student will be bored if the same type of learning is being taught for them for few times. Another reason is the teachers’ teaching style. Most of the teacher is not productive in teaching. Majority of teacher are incapable of designing varieties of tasks. Most of it is monotonous and they tend to take text from internet without being modify with student need and interest. Also, this method is focus on meaning, and grammar is not really considered but in my opinion, grammar is foundation of English.

Therefore, I suppose the reading traditions must be developed for the student and the change of teachers’ teaching style because what is the use of the methodology if the teacher not able to deliver it. Teacher can take training in other country like Australia to master the method. In conclusion, teacher has the main key to success in any method they use.

Reference:

  • Richard, Jack C. (2006). Communicative Language Teaching Today, Cambridge University Press. Broughton, Geoffrey, and Brumfit, Christopher, and Flavell, Roger, and Hill, Peter and Pincas, Anita (1980) Teaching English as a Foreign Language, Second Edition. University of London Institute of Education.
  • Genre-approach-kinds-of-text. pdf
  • Emilia, Emi (2011) Implementasi Pendekatan Genre-Based di Indonesia
  • www. kompas. com Text-based Approach for Indonesian Learning
  • Principles of Communicative Language Teaching and Task-Based Instruction (. pdf file)
  • Triastuti, Anita. (2011) Critical Issues in the Implementation of Genre-based Teaching (journal)

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