本期範文賞析(SPOTLIGHT)，邀請政大英文系的林欣潔老師撰文，談論其如何運用教學策略與課堂活動安排，來誘發學生的學習動機，提升英文口說訓練課的學習效能。本期教師專訪(STAR OF THE MONTH)為劉美德老師，暢談她在走進校園任教之前，如何於非政府組織以及國際媒體集團，潛心修煉文字藝術。讀者園地(PENNY FOR YOUR THOUGHTS)節錄中心演講「克服演說恐懼『心』秘技」的精華摘要，供讀者一覽臨床心理師的專業見解，剖析上台演講的恐懼成因與對策。
林欣潔老師 撰文 (Written by Hsin-Chieh Lin, Lecturer at Department of English, NCCU)
Establishing College Students' Self-Motivation in ESL Class: My Experience of Facilitating Classroom Activities in Business English Oral Training Class
How to inspire and maintain learners' motivation has long been a core issue for teachers. Ideally, learners should be self-motivated and self-disciplined, as learning is "for their own good." However, an introspective teacher would confess with sheer honesty that learners' motivation is tightly connected with the learning context. As Dörnyei (2005) argued, "...learners will not automatically take ownership of their motivational disposition but need to be supported in this process" (pp. 111-112), it takes mutual efforts --of both the learner and the teacher -- to create and maintain learners' motivation. This article will analyze some strategies adopted in an oral training class that kept the learners' drive. The course is considered an appropriate example as it receives 97 % of satisfaction from 76% of the students of the class, and 65% of the students agree that "the teacher increased their learning motivation."
The class in discussion was an 18-week elective Business English oral training course designed for 26 junior and senior college students. The purpose of the class was both to equip the students with basic work-place English and business English, and to facilitate appropriate language use in context. As a result, the course contained 3 role-play activities, along with other small in-class discussions. Each role-play activity comprised 3 stages: preparation, discussion, and reflection. In the preparation stage, the teacher carefully chose the tasks relevant to the students' daily life, such as negotiation and sales pitch (promoting ideas). For each activity, students were divided into 6 groups of 4 to 5 people. The teacher used power-point, pictures and textbook audio tracks to depict the background of the role-play story, and stressed how the task might relate to the students' life and career. Next, the teacher randomly assigned the students with different roles, and each role received a character card and a mission card, which were not to be exposed to students of other roles. Then the students of the same role gathered together to discuss their missions. The teacher would walk around in the classroom to take questions. Later, when the students returned to their own group, the teacher showed them a detailed rubric sheet about how students would be scored. While explaining, the teacher emphasized how to succeed in the mission, rather than how to avoid failure, with some clear examples. The teacher asserted that, while the students' mission might conflict with one another, each group had to work cooperatively to reach the final success. Lastly, a detailed time table that broke down the task into different stages was shown on the board to specify the time students were given to accomplish each mission.
When the discussion started, the teacher timed the students with a timer and gave a 3-minute-notice before each mission ended. During discussion, the teacher walked around the classroom to observe and note down each student's performance without making eye-contact or talking to students. After the discussion, students were given a sheet to note down other team-members' and their own good performance. Later on, they were asked to share their observation. After the reflection period, the teacher gave instant feedback on how each group performed, with emphasis on the successful parts. When pointing out the room for improvement, the teacher gave very specific instructions on how to improve. In case of students' complaint or disagreement, the teacher would ask the students to stay after the activity for a direct talk.
What makes these activities successful in inducing the students' motivation? Dörnyei (2005) proposed a 4-dimensional framework that developed a motivational teaching practice: creating the basic motivational conditions, generating initial student motivation, maintaining and protecting motivation, and encouraging positive retrospective self-evaluation (p. 111).
Zoltán. "Motivation and 'Self-Motivation' ." The Psychology of the Language Learner: Individual Differences in Second Language Acquisition, Lawrence Erlbaum Associate, Inc., 2005, pp. 112
Dörnyei includes some specific conditions that fulfill each dimension in the chart. With a close examination, I would like to propose 6 key elements of creating a motivational teaching environment and analyze how the operation of activities of the Business English oral training class acted in accordance with the model, thereby successfully constructing and maintaining the students' learning motivation:
1. Establishing a trusting and cooperative environment.
2. Drawing connections between students and tasks.
3. Setting clear goals.
4. Increasing learners' expectancy for success.
5. Securing positive image and creating autonomy.
6. Providing motivational feedback.
First, the teacher was committed to creating a pleasant and supportive classroom atmosphere by promoting group collaboration, creating rapport within the groups. Second, the teacher did choose tasks that were relevant to students' life and emphasized this connection, making the task relevant to the students. Moreover, with a clear and specific rubric, time table and timer, the students had clear goals in mind. The technique of setting time constraints also kept the students motivated with a sense of urgency. Also, when the teacher stressed how to succeed with clear examples, the learners' expectancy of success was increased. In addition, the students' autonomy was secured as the teacher avoided interrupting their discussion and empowered them to evaluate themselves and other members. When students were granted the power to evaluate their own performance, they tended to take the responsibility of improving their own performance. Moreover, focusing on positive performance also contributed to securing the students' positive images. Lastly, providing specific ways or improvement serves to provide motivational feedback for the future, helping create a basic incentive for the next task.
To conclude, it takes two parties to establish and sustain learners' self-motivation. Holding the power of designing the course and administering the class operation, teachers certainly have an upper hand to facilitate an aggressive learning environment that creates self-motivating students.
Dörnyei, Zoltán. The Psychology of the Language Learner: Individual Differences in Second Language Acquisition. Lawrence Erlbaum Associate, Inc., 2005.
受訪老師: 劉美德老師 (Interviewee: Dana Liu, Adjunct Lecturer of AWEC)
Dana Liu has taught various English courses, including writing, storytelling and oral presentation, at NTU for seven years. Prior to teaching, Dana worked as a researcher, writer and analyst at NGOs such as the World Bank, and as a writer and editor in the research and analysis division of The Economist Group, building up her strength in forming a strong connection between the writer and the public. After stepping onto campus, Dana tirelessly shares her passion with students from all disciplines. Recognizing that "human connection" is something most students pursue intuitively, Dana utilizes a wide range of stylistic strategies–including metaphor, analogy, anecdote, case study, and storytelling–to help students analyze their most persuasive approach for an ever-wider readership to promote the significance of their research ideas.
Many may not know that she is a writer of fiction and poetry. In her free time, Dana enjoys playing with narrative form to imaginatively retell history. She loves reading both for literary enjoyment and the study of craft. Her most recent preferred genre is magical realism. The following resources are works of literature and writers Dana would like to share with the reader, using the craft of writing from a marginalized vantage point to tell a story. A good writer must have the perseverance to create, through language, a structure out of nothing. The hardest task is also the most rewarding: to capture, beyond surface beauty in language, the complex meaning underneath.
1. The Master and Margarita by Mikhail Bulgakov: Bulgakov wrote this satirical dark comedy between 1928 and 1940 in the Soviet Union during Stalin's regime. In this retelling of Goethe's Faust, the devil visits the officially atheist Soviet Union. I love how work playfully explores tensions between state-sanctioned writers and the creativity of the Russian soul, among other things. It is an excellent example of samizdat literature, passed underground from reader to reader.
2. The Book of Night Women by Marlon James: He is a brilliant writer who made the top 100 most influential people of 2019. His latest work, Black Leopard, Red Wolf, is described by Salmon Rushdie as: "the first volume of a promised trilogy, a fabulist reimagining of Africa, with inevitable echoes of Tolkien, George R.R. Martin and Black Panther, but highly original, its language surging with power, its imagination all-encompassing."