Exploring teaching practices and their influence on students' learning experiences of the English language in class 1
Date of Award
Master of Education (M. Ed.)
Institute for Educational Development, Karachi
The purpose of my study was to understand teaching practices and their influence on students' learning experiences in English language in Class 1. The research was conducted in the context of an English medium private school in Karachi with two teachers and six students. Within the qualitative paradigm and case study approach teachers' perceptions, practices, pedagogies, strategies and challenges were investigated and students learning experiences and their challenges were studied by conducting interviews, classroom observations and analyzing documents. The underpinning assumption was that this study would be significant to develop better understanding of ESL classrooms in an urban developing context which would lead to better teaching and learning relationships, improve practice, and enhance learning opportunities for students as well as for teachers. The data suggests that with increasing innovative practices, teaching in the school is, to a certain extent, in 'social constructivist' paradigm. However, at times, traces of the 'traditional' teaching method can also be observed where teacher takes a shift from democratic practices. It is here that they need to reflect on and improve basic teaching strategies and their relationship with students. The study informs me that children are expressive, clear and coherent when they talk (in both languages)about school and share experiences from daily life as they are engaged in meaning making in spite of language difficulties. They like oral language and communication through the medium of art more than tasks that require writing. The findings suggest that English being their second or third language cannot be a natural means of communication. Therefore in spite of motivation through incentives, exposure and reinforcement students find it hard to internalize and communicate freely and confidently in English language. In spite of the ability and facilitation to converse in English, they revert to Urdu in the absence of teachers. Working on the concept of 'learning community' the school structures and appreciates parental involvement in students' progress. The study reveals that under proper structural support and guidance, the two teachers are working with commitment, to resolve students' language learning issues and make their learning experiences worth while. In the process they face difficulties and continuously work out innovative ways to overcome the challenges of second language teaching and learning. On the other hand, students are aware of the expectations of their adults (parents and teachers) and norms of the classroom. They continue to extract meaning from the learning and make an attempt to become proficient users of English language.
Sultana, U. (2009). Exploring teaching practices and their influence on students' learning experiences of the English language in class 1 (Unpublished master's dissertation). Aga Khan University, Karachi, Pakistan.