Teaching Modern Languages

Teaching Modern Languages

Teaching Modern Languages

Teaching Modern Languages


Modern language classrooms are currently dominated by the communicative method of language teaching. This reader draws together recent and newly commissioned papers to show the origins of communicative methodology, how it has developed, what its research justification is and how it can most effectively be used in the classroom. Various chapters examine the particular challenges of differentiation, teaching grammar, encouraging pupils to use the target language together and teaching a foreign language to children with special educational needs. The final section discusses ways of developing creativity in the modern languages classroom through the use of drama, creative writing and role play. Anyone involved in teaching modern languages will find this reader a rich source for reflection and good practice.


The form of teacher education is one of the most debated educational issues of the day. How is the curriculum of teacher education, particularly initial, pre-service education to be defined? What is the appropriate balance between practical school experience and the academic study to support such practice? What skills and competence can be expected of a newly qualified teacher? How are these skills formulated and assessed and in what ways are they integrated into an ongoing programme of professional development? These issues have been at the heart of the development and planning of the Open University’s programme of initial teacher training and education—the Postgraduate Certificate of Education (PGCE). Each course within the programme uses a combination of technologies, some of which are well tried and tested, while others, on information technology for example, may represent new and innovatory approaches to teaching. All, however, contribute in an integrated way towards fulfilling the aims and purposes of the course and programme.

All of the PGCE courses have readers which bring together a range of articles, extracts from books, and reports that discuss key ideas and issues, including specially commissioned chapters. The readers also provide a resource that can be used to support a range of teaching and learning in other types and structures of course.

This series from Routledge, in supporting the new Open University PGCE programme, provides a contemporary view of developments in primary and secondary education and across a range of specialist subject areas. Its primary aim is to provide insights and analysis for those participating in initial education and training. Much of its content, however, will also be relevant to ongoing programmes of personal and institutional professional development. Each book is designed to provide an integral part of that basis of knowledge that we would expect of both new and experienced teachers.

Bob Moon

Professor of Education, The Open University

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