Группа:Мир учителя
Статья "Teaching English Trough the Project Work"
  • Кульжанова Мария Абитовна
  • учитель старших классов
  • школа-гимназия №17
  • г.Астана,Казахстан

The worldwide interest in getting of competent knowledge of the English language is growing.

Language is the most recognized means of communication. The life and the development of any human society are based on communication through language. The vision of the world of a nation is conveyed by its language, which reflects the moral code, relations between people. So

language is the main tool in acquiring other peoples’ lives, traditions. Language use is creative. The learners use language to express what they think and what they want to say. To communicate better in a foreign language they should have the ability to use language appropriate to a context. Communicative language learning is not one method. It is an approach, an understanding of what language is and how we can learn a foreign language. This understanding leads us to teach in ways that makes language learning most successful. The communicative approach helps the learners to achieve the main issues in learning, they are expected to interact with other people.

Another peculiarity in successful teaching of a communicative speech is an activity where the students are put in the centre of the action, where they use the language and practice communicative speech. It is the project work , its purpose is to encourage the learners to work things out for themselves. It is an extended language activity, focusing on the topics, themes. The project work is a means of communication and enjoyment. The learners can experiment with the language as something real. It is a highly adaptable methodology, it is useful as a means of generating positive motivation, because it is very personal. The students tell about their own lives, their own research into topics that interest them. This work helps them to understand that they can use English to talk about their own world, it improves their ability to think.

Project work allows students to consolidate the language that they have learnt and encourages them to acquire new vocabulary and expressions. In addition, it gives learners integrated skills practice. Throughout project work students have extensive practice of the skills of reading, writing, listening and speaking. Using projects with classes provides excellent opportunities for cross- curricular work. The topics should be carefully chosen and have to be presented in a lively and up-to-date manner. It is important to present a new project in an enthusiastic way and encourage the class activity in a discussion about the key topic. The more students are engaged in to a project, the more likely that the project will be a success. The teacher tries to encourage learners to think of their own ideas, to produce something new of their own. Before setting up a project it is essential to explain the final outcome, this will help them to understand what they are doing and why. The teacher explains the students that at the end of the project they will write or design a small leaflet on the topic, a wall display, a poster…

There are some stages in presenting a project:

  1. Initial discussion of the idea.
  2. Decide a form of the project.
  3. Practicing language skills.
  4. Collecting information.
  5. Displaying the result of the research.

The project work “Countries, I’d like to visit” was done by the students of the Intermediate Level. The students gathered information about different countries, prepared video slides about the country they would like to visit, prepared role plays, songs, costumes. Their reports were informative and creative, because information was taken from different sources: Encyclopedia, Internet, magazines. Then all groups worked on the “Question Quiz” “Countries and Cities”.

The song “It’s a Small World” was performed by the whole class. So by this kind of activity we may say that project work is a kind of investigation, active participation, which is held instead of passive listening and memorizing. The role of a teacher becomes that of a facilitator, provider of a feedback.

The students of the Upper Intermediate Level prepared the project “Space? What is it?”

The class was divided into two groups. They described their imaginary journeys to different planets, named the planets, wrote about the adventures happened during their trips.

The second group presented their report about the moon. They made a video film about the moon, the role play about the adventures of the girl who “was caught by the alien”. Others described their trips to the planet of dreams, showed slides of these planets. The models of the spaceships by which they could travel to other planets were done by them.

This project showed the advanced level of the students, their creative approach while presenting this topic. They themselves were impressed by the breathtaking views of home from different planets. All the students with different levels of knowledge were involved in this project, everyone tried to make contribution to the group work. This quote by Benjamin Disraeli “ Like all other travelers, I have seen more than I remember, and remember more than I have seen proves that if learners are involved in the creative teaching process, learning becomes motivated and the successful result in teaching a foreign language is expected. So the meaning of the project work can be best characterized by the following Chinese proverb:

“Tell me, and I’ll forget.

Show me, and I’ll remember.

Involve me, and I’ll learn.”

Project work is also used to increase motivation and retention, to help students develop a positive image, to develop critical thinking and problem - solving, it develops fluency in the use of language features that they have learned.

The project work on the theme “Technology” was done to increase student’s knowledge in the field of science, to acquire with the new science vocabulary, to widen creativity of the students.

At the beginning of the project the students had the task on listening. Text “Alfred Nobel” was done for both groups, then they answered to the questions, adding new information about Alfred Nobel.

On the interactive board were written words and the definitions, the students must find the correct definition to each word.

  1. DNA a) a form of energy
  2. gene b) a group of atoms
  3. molecule c) a substance capable of killing bacteria
  4. microchip d) a part of a cell inherited from parents
  5. electricity e) genetic information about humans
  6. bacteria f) a very small electric circuit
  7. antibiotic g) small living things that cause diseases

Then the groups showed their presentations.

Group I

On the interactive board is written Dryden’s saying:

“Genius must be born,

And never be taught.”

(the students explained the meaning of this saying)

These words mean that great genius became famous, though most of them didn’t get good education at that time. They made great inventions, really they were talented from birth.

For example, Mikhail Vasilievich Lomonosov founded the first chemical laboratory in 1748.

He was a great physicist, chemist and an astronomer. He formulated the main principles of one of the laws of physics- the law of conservation of matter and motion. He was recognized as one of the outstanding persons in the world in the 18th century. He built the first generator, later he discovered the effect of passing an electric current through certain solutions. He called these effects the laws of electrolysis.

Student 3: As a result of Faraday’s work Morse invented telegraph and Edison invented the electric light.

Albert Einstein demonstrated the theory of relativity.

Edwin Hubble proved that the universe is expanding. These discoveries were of great importance for science. In the 19th century Fleming discovered an effective way of killing bacteria — penicillin. For medicine it was a tremendous contribution.

Group 2

“Knowledge is a city

To the building of which

Every human being brought a stone.” (Emerson)

Students explained this saying :

Many years ago people didn’t have any instruments, for every day life they used simple tools made of stone and wood, they learned to make fire, used to hunt by simple tools. From century to century new important inventions were made. The inventions of telephone, telescope, microscope were the great achievements of that time. And from century to century new inventions changed people’s lives. That means that each generation made an important contribution to the development of science and technology. The 20th century became famous with the invention of computers, mobile phones, space exploration, etc.

Future of science and technology.

Video- interview:

-Student: I’m taking an interview with the astronomer Ros Watts.

- Professor Watts, you go to a lot of international conferences on astronomy. Where have you been this month?

- Well, I’ve just come back from Puerto Rico. We have just had a meeting there to discuss radio signals from space.

-Have we ever received signals from outer space?

- No, we haven’t. We have used mathematics to try to communicate with aliens. But we haven’t had any reply.

- Just one more question, professor Watts.

Have you ever seen an alien or a UFO?

- No, I have never seen one. But I think that aliens are more advanced than we are. I believe that UFOs come to Earth to study us and to use the planet in the future.

  • Thank you, professor Watts for the interview.

Then the students showed their video- film about the aliens. The film is about the future of our planet, when our technology will be highly developed. People will travel to other planets and will cooperate with the aliens in space exploration.

Discussion on the questions

  1. Does technology make our lives easier?
  2. Do we rely too much on technology?
  3. What technical advances can you see happening in your lifetime?
  4. Would you like to be an inventor?
  5. What kind of things would you invent?
  6. How will the world change over the next years?

Science Quiz:

  1. Who discovered the three laws of motion?
  2. a) Copernicus b) Newton c) Galileo
  3. Who developed the periodic system?
  4. a) Mendel b) Mendeleyev c) Mendelssohn
  5. Who discovered that electricity existed as a current?
  6. a) Ampere b) Volta c) Faraday
  7. Who discovered the fundamental principles of genetics?
  8. a) Darwin b) Lamark c) Mendel
  9. Who discovered that the Earth orbits the Sun ?
  10. a) Copernicus b) Newton c) Galileo
  11. Who discovered that light is made up of a mixture of coloured light?
  12. a) Maxwell b) Einstein c) Newton


Students told about the future of our planet as they imagine it to be , about new achievements: traveling to other planets , probably computers will start thinking for themselves, the cars will become completely obsolete. We won’t be able to tell the difference between reality and virtual reality.

So this project showed high level of knowledge in English, because they could express their opinions, they properly used information taken from different sources. This project having links with physics showed good knowledge of the students in this field. The students not only improved their English but enriched their knowledge in physics too. Discussion on some points was a fruitful exchange of opinions. The topic of the project was chosen by the students, that’s why motivation was high and the effectiveness of such an activity was clear.

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