Creativity in the English Language Classroom

Creativity in the English language classroom sometimes means «teaching outside the box» or somebody’s safety zone but it is the best way young learners learn, «by doing»! Young students might come in the classroom with limited language resources but with a full creative potential which teachers can make use to achieve the highest possible performance. There are countless advantages in integrating creative activities in language learning. To name but a few….

Creativity …..

■ increases children’s engagement and motivation in studying a foreign language

■ makes language learning enjoyable and memorable

■ gives children a sense of ownership and a feeling of success

■ allows for divergent responses and, for children who may be strong in other areas of the curriculum, e.g. art, music or dance, to use these to support their learning

■ promotes children’s ability to think in a flexible way

■ provides a personalised challenge

■ develops qualities such as patience, persistence and resourcefulness

■ provides a basis for the development of more sophisticated, conceptual and abstract creative thinking in future.

(Seven pillars of creativity in primary ELT Carol Read)

To be more specific, teaching vocabulary chunks to a primary school learners would be meaningless if he/she finds no place to use it. But what if he was read a story where the words he needs to learn are the main characters? What if he has to find out how they look and draws them? What if he makes masks out of these words? What if he acts the words out? There is nothing that could mean more to our little learners!

Example given, «A mitten in the Snow»

A mitten in the snow craftwork

The Mitten in the Snow (P)
The mitten in the snow
The mitten in the snow
Help us please so we won’t freeze!
The mitten in the snow.

A mole squeezes in
A mole squeeze in
Help us please so we won’t freeze!
The mitten in the snow.

A rabbit squeezes in
A rabbit squeezes in
Help us please so we won’t freeze!
The mitten in the snow.

Continue with the other animals:
Hedgehog
Owl
Badger
Fox
Bear (yes, even a bear!)
Mouse

The bear says, «A-choo!»
The bear says, «A-choo!»
All the animals fly out of
The mitten in the snow!
Source: Mrs. Jones Room

 

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