About 375 million people in the universe speak English as their female parent lingua and about the same figure of people speaks English as their 2nd linguistic communication. English now is the dominant linguistic communication in different industries as officially and widely spoken in 58 states around the universe. With the coming of globalisation and cyberspace engineerings, people now has the chance to easy come into contact with assorted planetary markets and services and take part in international activities. As such, the English Language has become so of import to many people that holding it as a 2nd linguistic communication have become a necessity.
Learning English as a 2nd linguistic communication is non an nightlong occupation. It takes clip to larn a 2nd linguistic communication. A whole field of Second Language Acquisition ( SLA ) researches has been developed by many bookmans. So much literature on how to efficaciously learn and larn English as a Second Language have been accumulated over clip.
An emerging tendency on the instruction and acquisition of English as a Second Language is what is known as the Blended Learning.
The University of Tartu ( 2007 ) came up with a study known as “ Blended Learning: Research Reports & A ; Examples of Best Practices ” and explains blended acquisition as “ the combination of different developing ‘media ‘ ( engineerings, activities, and types of event ) to make an optimal preparation plan for a specific audience ” based on the plants of Bersin ( 2004 ) . Mentioning Kaye Thorne ( 2003 ) , this definition is farther elaborated by the study as the mix of one-on-one coaching and traditional signifiers of schoolroom preparation with multimedia engineering, Cadmium ROM picture cyclosis, practical schoolrooms, voice mail, electronic mail and conference calls, on-line text life and picture cyclosis.
Several reappraisals and studies ( University of Tartu, 2007 ; Dzakiria, et. Al. , 2006 ; Oliver & A ; Trigwell, 2005 ) on blended acquisition have quoted Whitelocks & A ; Jefts ‘ ( 2003 ) definitions of Blended Learning as:
the incorporate combination of traditional larning with web-based online attacks
the combination of media and tools deployed in an e-learning environment
the combination of a figure of pedagogical attacks, irrespective of the acquisition engineering used in each instance
The diverseness of definition of the term blended larning points out the usage of several media that can be used to better accomplish educational ends and therefore ease acquisition. The different types of media available to the scholars give them fluctuations of how they can get new cognition, accomplishments and competency. However, Oliver & A ; Trigwell ( 2005 ) stress that fluctuation entirely is non plenty to ease acquisition. Harmonizing to them, fluctuation should ever be coupled with understanding for without understanding, there is no acquisition.
Discernment as an experience of difference is besides about contemplation. Discernment which is a signifier of contemplation facilitates new understanding that has been tested and proven true a assortment of experiences. These experiences include the traditional face-to-face method of learning and acquisition and the engineering assisted manner of larning through computing machine and the cyberspace.
This paper specifically explores the usage of Blended Learning as the model of a two hr plan for larning English as a Secondary Language ( ESL ) among big scholars.
II. The Learners and the Learning Context
The scholars of ESL are by and large divided into 4 degrees, viz. : novice, lower-intermediate, upper-intermediate and advanced. This paper focuses on the lower-intermediate type of ESL scholars.
Heads Up English describes the lower-intermediate scholars of ESL as those who are in the province of passage who have already acquired the rudimentss of the English linguistic communication but who are still fighting to utilize these basic elements in a consistent and accurate mode. Heads Up English farther explains that the weakest of the lower-intermediate pupils are those who can manage short and basic conversations that are related to their work, household, avocations and their other countries of involvement. They are those who still lack vocabularies which make them to frequently fall back to lexicons. Their conversations are reactive in nature. The stronger pupils of the lower-intermediate degree on the other manus are those who speak with slightly more ability and assurance although they still lack vocabularies which consequences to long intermissions.
With the lower-intermediate scholars, Heads Up English recommends that the undermentioned activities be given to them for their optimum acquisition: repeat and extension of activities, listening pattern, pronunciation pattern and speech production pattern.
The grownup scholars of ESL who are to undergo the two hr larning plan presented in this paper are those who are already familiar and comfy in the usage of the cyberspace for simple research, pilotage and e-mailing. These cyberspace and computing machine accomplishments are the pre-requisite in this paper ‘s Blended Learning plan. Conversely, these pupils are those who have easy entree to the cyberspace as this is a portion of the basic support system which harmonizing to Dzakiria, et.al. ( 2006 ) and Dziuban, et.al. ( 2004 ) is important in the successful execution of BL.
III. Learning Aims
Whole linguistic communication direction in 2nd linguistic communication instruction has been a turning motion harmonizing to Yang ( 2005 ) . She quotes that this whole linguistic communication direction is referred by Acuna-Reyes ( 1993 ) as “ the coincident, incorporate instruction of hearing, speech production, reading and composing within a meaningful context ” . Yang farther explains this thought by stating that:
“ I believe that developing the four linguistic communication humanistic disciplines accomplishments at the same time is non merely an ideal end of ESL instruction, but besides an effectual agencies. Listening and reading are indispensable for inputting linguistic communication information. But these are inactive procedures. If scholars can really utilize the linguistic communication in their ain speech production and/or composing, they will necessitate to actively treat the information and therefore reinforce and trip the linguistic communication input. The coincident ocular and audile stimulations make retaining information more effectual and efficient. ”
With the terminal end of supplying the grownup learners the chance to hold a whole linguistic communication direction experience, this paper sets its aims to be as follows:
To let the scholars express their positions for the hereafter in relation to their dreams and aspirations as they strengthen their cognition on grammar ( future tense )
To allow the scholars listen to and read aloud a conversation and concentrate on the inside informations of the exchanged messages
To hold the scholars listen and read a study and retrieve of import inside informations
To dispute the scholars to explicate written sentences of their ain utilizing selected words from their reading stuffs
IV. The Learning Design
To accomplish the above-named aims, a Blended Learning two hr plan was carefully designed. The first portion of the design is a one hr traditional face-to-face method of learning within a schoolroom scene. The other hr of the plan is composed of self-paced learning activities among the pupils where they are to reply hearing, reading and authorship exercisings within a computing machine / cyberspace platform. This is besides known as the Computer Mediated Communication ( CMC ) .
A. Face-to-Face Classroom Discussion
The instructor will foremost hold a treatment on the topic of grammar, specifically the hereafter tense. This is the portion of the category where the instructor gives input to the pupils and her occupation is to do certain that such input is a meaningful one. Meaningful input harmonizing to LIghtbown and Spada ( 1993 ) as cited in Haley & A ; Rentz ( 2002 ) is a necessity in the scholars ‘ acquisition of grammar and words of 2nd linguistic communication. The instructor through this treatment lesson of the future tense provides such a comprehensive input talk while the pupils are listening. Haley & A ; Rentz ( 2002 ) explains that “ if the input is understood and there is adequate of it, the scholar will automatically get the necessary grammar ” .
In the lecture-discussion, the instructor will be giving a figure of illustrations on the usage of the word “ will ” . The instructor establishes a form on how this word is used for the pupils to easy understand how it is used in different sentences and different scenarios. This is in support of the recommendation of Heads Up English on supplying lower degree intermediate ESL pupils to hold repeat and extension activities to reenforce acquisition. This can besides be referred to as input alteration as explained by Larsen-Freeman & A ; Long ( 1991 ) as cited in Chapelle ( 1998 ) where simplification, amplification and added redundancy is valuable in ESL.
The two exercisings that follow the talk treatment give the pupils the chance to prove their apprehension of the grammar lesson. The written exercising where pupils are asked to compose a group of words into meaningful sentences utilizing the word “ will ” Lashkar-e-Taibas them produce a “ comprehendible end product ” . “ Comprehensible end product ” is that linguistic communication end product that is produced under conditions that facilitate acquisition ( Swain, 1985 as cited in Chapelle, 1998 ) . As the pupils form the correct reply, they become witting that they can convey significance.
The interview and presentation exercisings on the other manus facilitate communicative map. Communicative map is elaborated by Haley and Rentz ( 2002 ) as the meaningfulness of the end product which the pupils should experience that there is a demand to hold correct and expressive linguistic communication end product. In the instance of associating how a pupil sees himself in the hereafter and stating the category about his spouse ‘s perceptual experience of the hereafter, the pupils would experience the immediate demand and duty to bring forth right look of thoughts. This is where linguistic communication acquisition takes topographic point.
Taking into consideration the background of the grownup lower-level intermediate pupils of ESL who already have anterior cognition on English grammar, the instructor ‘s treatment serves as their reappraisal on the construction of the English linguistic communication. This so gives an indicant that these grownup scholars are ready to larn. The preparedness of the pupils to larn is an of import factor in learning ESL as emphasized Haley & A ; Rentz ( 2002 ) . A brief reappraisal of grammar is adequate for these pupils to be reminded of the linguistic communication signifier. The one hr acquisition activity is to a great extent focused on the pupils ‘ engagement in replying the list of inquiries that pertain to how they see themselves in the hereafter. This subject which involves a really personal position of the pupils is ideal in their linguistic communication scholar as explained by Heads Up English.
The personal engagement of the pupils in the narrative that they are speaking about in the interview exercising of discoursing their personal perceptual experience of the hereafter has a outstanding characteristic. This outstanding characteristic is what Haley & A ; Hertz ( 2002 ) claim to be one of the of import classs in easing acquisition of linguistic communication signifier among pupils. This outstanding characteristic of the exercising harmonizing to Krashen ( 1982 ) as cited in Chapelle ( 1998 ) facilitates linguistic communication development.
B. Learning Through Computer Mediated Communication
Computer Mediated Communication ( CMC ) is “ a procedure of communicating in which there is a computing machine between the pupil and the instructor ” ( CMC Resource Site ) . It specifically involves electronic mail, chat, newsgroups, listsrv and message boards. As cited in CMC Resource Site, John December ( 2002 ) explains CMC as the “ procedure by which people create, exchange and perceive information utilizing networked telecommunications system ( or non-networked computing machines ) that facilitate encryption, transmission, and decrypting messages. ”
This 2nd portion of this two hr larning plan is composed of two activities which are listening to a conversation about cricket and hearing to a conditions study.
The hearing activity on a conversation about cricket the hearing activity on a conditions study allow the pupils to listen to the conversation and the study several times if they choose to. This is in understanding with the Heads Up English in their claim that lower degree intermediate ESL scholars are best served with activities that are insistent. In the same mode, this repeat of listening to the same narrative several times is besides in line with what Haley & A ; Rentz ( 2002 ) claim that “ if the input is understood and there is adequate of it, the scholar will automatically get the necessary grammar ” .
In these hearing activities, the pupils get into a computing machine and follow a nexus to listen to the conversation about the game of cricket and the conditions study. Being on-line allows for the pupils to listen to the conversation as many times as they please at their ain gait. This insistent hearing to the sound within the control of the scholar facilitates comprehendible input which is what is needed for Second Language Acquisition harmonizing to Chapelle ( 2002 ) .
Answering True or False
After listening, the pupils are asked to reply true of false inquiries. This is a trial on how much information the pupils were able to take in during the exercising of listening. With these inquiries, pupils are given a usher on what information to look for in the hearing procedure. This is someway indicating to what to detect in what the pupils are listening to. In the article of Haley & A ; Rentz ( 2002 ) , it is mentioned that Schmidt ( cited in Harley, 1998 ) defines the witting experience of noticing as the “ enrollment of the happening of a stimulus event in witting consciousness and subsequent storage in long term memory ” . This makes the pupils become really cognizant of the of import characteristics of the linguistic communication that facilitates linguistic communication acquisition ( Chapelle, 2002 ) . Conscious listening leads to comprehension which is understanding the semantic content of a message without needfully understanding linguistic communication sentence structure ( Chapelle, 2002 ) . This so leads to the pupils ‘ development of their lingual system.
When the pupils answer the true or false inquiries, they are being instructed to bring forth a valuable end product. When they listen, they get to take in an input which is defined by Smith ( 1993 ) as cited in Chapelle ( 1998 ) as “ the potentially processable linguistic communication informations which are made available by opportunity or by design, to the linguistic communication scholar ” . The mode by which the true or false inquiries were constructed in the exercising facilitates for the simplification, amplification and added redundancy which are characteristics that Laresen-Freeman & A ; Long ( 1991, cited in Chapelle, 2002 ) claim to be helpful in the linguistic communication development and linguistic communication acquisition of the scholars.
Exercise on Vocabulary Wordss
The vocabulary words exercising is designed to be answered by the pupils after they read the text of the conversation about cricket. The text high spots selected words in xanthous colour. These highlighted words are the vocabulary words that pupils need to place its equivalent word after reading the whole text.
Those selected words are specifically highlighted in xanthous colour to heighten its ocular consequence to the reader. Some surveies show that such word ( input ) sweetening could hold an effectual inexplicit focal point on the linguistic communication signifier for grownup scholars ( Doughty & A ; Williams, 1998 as cited in Haley & A ; Rentz, 2002 ) . Doughty & A ; Williams ( 1998 as cited in Haley & A ; Rentz, 2002 ) farther elaborated this by stating “ In input processing, scholars are told what to pay attending to and what to notice and why they must alter their processing ” . With this, Second Language Acquisition takes topographic point.
Matching Wordss with Pictures
The matching of words with the given images as the exercising prior to listening to the conditions study allows pupils to fix on the thoughts they are about to hear in the study. The colourful images of rain, Sun, cloud, snow and air current give the pupils the opportunity to tie in their thoughts about conditions on concrete topics. This form portion of the claim of Doughty & A ; Williams ( 1998, cited in Haley & A ; Rentz, 2002 ) that enhanced inputs give effectual inexplicit focal point among scholars and this can take to linguistic communication acquisition.
The sentences that the pupils will be organizing based on the selected words that are highlighted in the texts that they read on the conditions study and the conversation on cricket would function as their end products. These end products are really of import in estimating the acquisition that the pupils were able to absorb in the hearing and reading exercisings. It is of import to hold this end product because, as reported by Swain ( 1998, cited in Haley & A ; Rentz, 2002 and Chapelle, 1998 ) “ it is while trying to bring forth the mark linguistic communication ( vocally or subvocally ) that they [ pupils ] do non cognize how to state ( or compose ) exactly the significance they wish to convey ” . This demand of pupils making sentences of their ain is what Doughty & A ; Williams ( 1998, cited in Haley & A ; Rentz, 2002 ) see as consciousness-raising undertakings where they are intentionally directed to go to to organize as they solve grammar jobs in building sentences. This is besides in understanding with Ellis ( cited in Larsen, 2009 ) that pupils demonstrate larning when they can reassign what they have learned into a new undertaking.
After composing the sentences, pupils are so instructed to e-mail their work to the instructor for the instructor to look into on the pupils ‘ work. This method of communicating is known as the asynchronous acquisition where the scholar participates at his convenient ( Peterson, 2009 ) . The pupil does non necessitate to hold an in agreement clip with his instructor to be online at the same clip with him to discourse in a confab or forum the instructor ‘s feedback on his work ( synchronal ) . Synchronous method in this peculiar case is best in the exercising of look intoing the written work of the pupils since sentence building and thought preparation are elements that are being checked. Notes on the pupil ‘s errors, strengths and failings would be adequate and that farther treatment of that can be facilitated within the schoolroom scene in the regular face-to-face portion of the whole Blended Learning procedure.
In decision, this whole design of the two hr larning activities that are grounded on the theories of Blended Learning is an effort to concretize the merger of the strengths of the face-to-face method of larning and larning through Computer Mediated Communication ( CMC ) . The activities are designed is such a manner to complement the two methods thereby taking for the maximal acquisition of the pupils.
It should be noted nevertheless that the success of this Blended Learning method depends both on the instructor and the pupils. The instructor should be an adept non merely in the capable affair of English as a Second Language ( ESL ) and Second Language Acquisition ( SLA ) but besides an expert of both the physical and on-line / practical environments of larning. The pupils on the other manus must besides hold within themselves that desire to be actively involved in the whole acquisition procedure.
Blended Learning is the method by which instructors and pedagogues of ESL can maximise the benefits of engineering in really leaving cognition and accomplishments to their pupils as they are being decently guided in geting the ability to talk English.