December 2009

Bringing English Language to the Margins: the Case of Inclusive English Education in India

  • by

When Chandrabhan Prasad, a Dalit writer, hosted birthday celebrations for Thomas Macaulay on Oct 2006, it was perhaps at one level a rather ironic attentiongetting gimmick, but it also opened up certain important issues.

“English, the Dalit goddess, is a world power today”, claims Prasad. “For complete emancipation Dalit/ Adivasi parents ought to give English education – if necessary, working more hours, borrowing money, selling off jewellery, even mortgaging properties”, he emphasizes, and it is becoming a widely shared sentiment. Over a century ago, Savitribai Phule, wife of social revolutionary Jotirao Phule, had written the same thing, saying in a poem, “shudras and ati-shudras (Dalits) now have the right to education, and through English casteism can be destroyed and Brahmanical teaching can be hurled away”. Dalits still believe this. (Omvedt, 2006)

Read More »Bringing English Language to the Margins: the Case of Inclusive English Education in India

THE WORLD ENGLISHES AND THE TEACHING OF PRONUNCIATION

  • by

Among the approximately 3000 languages spoken in the world English is the only language spoken by around 700 million people all over the world. There are approximately 400 million native speakers of English. There are around 300 million second language speakers, who have approximately native-like competence in English. It is also estimated that at the present time there are approximately 100 to 1000 million people who are the learners of English as a  foreign language.

Read More »THE WORLD ENGLISHES AND THE TEACHING OF PRONUNCIATION

Writing Skills- A Major Concern for the Budding Magnates

  • by

Quite contrary to the prevailing notion that the students of reputed professional colleges possess excellent communication skills, these students who flaunt their style with superficial American accent lack acceptable and grammatically correct writing skills. This over confident section, which remains unaware of its grey area, gets a shock of the life when it scores poor ranking in professional courses due to incompetent writing skills.

Read More »Writing Skills- A Major Concern for the Budding Magnates

Innovating classroom techniques to impart skills in Spoken English at elementary school level

  • by

This paper aims to tackle pedagogical inertia and free the teaching staff from the attitude of routines and make them use innovative classroom techniques at the elementary level.

Let there not be an emphasis on sentence writing

Writing of sentences, though euphemistically called simple sentences, from standard II itself is rather premature for a child of just six years. Writing of sentences in a sentence form is to bring in grammar through the back door. For a child with its mind only marginally developed nothing could be more frightening than instructing him in subtleties and nuances of grammar. It would, surely, scare away the child from the classroom and effectively kill his aptitude for learning English, with all its complexities and peculiarities.

Read More »Innovating classroom techniques to impart skills in Spoken English at elementary school level

br_business_english

Business English

  • by

br_business_englishA few facts about me: who I am, where I write from and why is it that I review this publication? Every sensitive reviewer, I believe, asks these questions and it is only fair that the answers be shared with the reader.

A colleague, member of the same department, entrusted with much the same teaching responsibilities and a student of the same field as the authors, I write this piece to review and assess a textbook and through it a phenomenon of which I am myself a part. Therefore, this review is rooted in a framework hopelessly intermeshed with the one under scrutiny, a view from inside, so to say.

Read More »Business English