MASTER S DEGREE PROJECT IN ENGLISH LANGUAGE TEACHING

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2 1. TITLE PAGE 2. INDEX TABLE OF CONTENTS 3. INTRODUCTION 3 4. THEORETICAL FOUNDATION OF THE MASTER S DEGREE PROJECT THEORETICAL BASIS: Psychological, sociological, pedagogical and epistemological sources of the teaching proposal Justification with the school curriculum 7 5. YEAR PLANNING 5.1 INTRODUCTION OBJECTIVES COMPETENCES CONTENTS, IDENTIFYING MINIMUM CONTENTS RELATION BETWEEEN competences,objectives and contents DISTRIBUTION AND TIMING OF CONTENTS IN UNITS PEDAGOGICAL METHODOLOGY EVALUATION AND ASSESSMENT PROCEDURES, ASSESSMENT CRITERIA AND REINFORCEMENT MEASURES TO PAY ATTENTION TO DIVERSITY AND STUDENTS WITH SPECIAL EDUCATIONAL NEEDS EDUCATION VALUES TEACHING MATERIALS AND RESOURCES COMPLEMENTARY AND EXTRACURRICULAR ACTIVITIES EDUCATIONAL INNOVATION PROJECT UNITS OF WORK MASTER S DEGREE PROJECT DEVELOPMENT PERSONAL CONSIDERATIONS AND CONCLUSIONS REFERENCES AND LEARNING MATERIALS ANNEXES 89 1

3 INTRODUCTION: The importance of teaching English English is one of the most widely spoken languages in the world, is the language of the science world and the main language used for International communication. According to S. Berns (1984:21), Language is interaction; it is interpersonal activity and has a clear relationship with society. In this light, language study has to look at the use (function) of language in context, both its linguistic context (what is uttered before and after a given piece of discourse) and its social, or situational context(who is speaking, what their social roles are, why they have come together to speak). Learning to communicate in English is a way of establishing links with others, approaching and making sense of other cultures. According to D. Atkinson (1999:625) Except for language learning and teaching, there is perhaps no more important concept in the field of teaching than culture. Spain is deeply involved in the construction of the European Union, where the ability to speak to other Community languages is a key factor to promote free movement of people and enhance cultural, scientific and economic cooperation among its members. The significant improvement of mass media and the fast development of information and communication technologies have fostered an increase of international relations, particularly in English. The geographical location of Spain and its economic development in different sectors makes it essential to train our students to live in an increasingly international, multicultural and multilingual world. The aim of foreign language teaching in ESO is to enable the students to develop the discoursive competences that may take place in multiples domains: the personal domain, including common family and social practices; the education domain related to everyday situations and actions in the school; the academic domain related to the subject contents; the public domain, which includes everything related to common social interactions; and the mass media domain. The CEFR stated that: the different stages of communicative competence in a specific language, taking into account the ability of the student to carry out various communication tasks which require performing actions with a specific communication aim in a specific domain. 2

4 The general purpose of the master s degree project is to draw up the year planning in which is included the most relevant aspects that have been studied in the different master work programs as much in the common parts (psychology, sociology and pedagogy) as in the specific part which is directly related to the attended subject. So, the general aim of this essay is based on the practice application of the theoretical knowledge which has been acquired during the master period. In order to explain the parts that the work has been organized, it is necessary to explain that has been made in the order that it has been said in the work guide. It has been developed the nine points, integrating the most important concepts of both modules, specially highlighting those what have been used in the practice period, following the recommended structure. 4. THEORETICAL FOUNDATION OF THE MASTER S DEGREE PROJECT To establish the theoretical basis it has taken into account the current legislation, taking as point of reference national and regional legislation and insisting on the importance of the school education project. It is important to adapt the legislation to the educational reality, stage, grade and summarizing to the student community. Each school education project must always adapt the special circumstances in accordance with the provisions and provided under the current legislation. 4.1 THEORETICAL BASIS: Psychological, sociological, pedagogical and epistemological sources of the teaching proposal. During the theoretical part of the master, we have learnt the curricular sources from different points of view; psychological, sociological, epistemological and pedagogical parting from ideas of different authors that I will develop next in what it s referred to main aspects. Taking into account Piaget s theories on cognitive development, we should bear in mind the following aspects when we plan our year planning and design tasks for our students: cognitive levels, the importance of sequencing our instruction, the relevance of testing to find out the results of our teaching, the need to encourage social interaction to facilitate learning and the fact that adolescents thought processes are not same as adults. According to Erickson s theory, Individuals proceed through eight stages of development which begin at birth and conclude at death. This theory demonstrates the importance of the teacher s role in helping students establish their identity upon reaching adolescence. 3

5 As Erickson s Psychological theory states that: Human beings develop according to a preset plan, the epigenetic principle that consists of two main elements: Personality develops according to a predetermined pattern that is maturationally set and society is structured to encourage challenges that arise during these times. According to Kohlberg s theory, adolescents should be provided with hypothetical dilemmas where they can expose their feelings and openly discuss their viewpoints in choosing between conflictual situations. Through their discussions, adolescents become more aware of their power to make choices and decisions about their lives. The teacher s role in this case will be to act as a facilitator in encouraging, the students have to learn to voice and accept others opinions From another point of view, socio-cultural physicology, Lev Vygotsky posited two types of psychological functioning: natural: consisting of biological growth, both physical and cognitive development and cultural: consisting of learning to use psychological and cultural tools, including signs, symbols and language. According to Gardner s theory all human beings have several different kinds of intelligence. Before mentioning some of these kinds of intelligence I would like to comment that in the theorical part of the master, it has been insisted on the importance of valuing the multiple intelligences to understand our students in a better way and so, help them to progress in their learning process. Gardner based his theories on the following kinds of intelligence: Linguistic intelligence, logical-mathematical intelligence, spatial intelligence, musical intelligence, bodilykinesthetic intelligence, interpersonal intelligence and intrapersonal intelligence. Some authors have been mentioned as Piaget, Vygotsky, Erickson, Kholberg, Gardner, among others. All of them have studied the different aspects that have influence on cognitive and motor skill development. The practice of all of these theories has been applied to teach and develop the student learning conducts, to reach the best possible results. From the epistemological point of view according to Schommer (1990) personal epistemology may be described as a system of five dimensions, conceptualised as beliefs about: 1) The organisation of knowledge: from simple and compartmentalised to complex and highly integrated. 4

6 2) The certainty of knowledge: from the certain and absolute to the tentative and constantly evolving. 3) The source of knowledge: from handed down by omniscient authority to derived by reason. 4) The control of knowledge acquisition: from the ability to learn is innate and fixed at birth to ability to learn is acquired through experience. 5) The speed of knowledge acquisition: from learning is quick or not-at-all to learning is acquired gradually. Firstly, I have mentioned that we have found four sides of curricular sources: social, psychological, epistemological and pedagogical. Last one will be mentioned in the 5.7 point of the didactic program such as it is said in the recommended schema of the program guide. 4.2 JUSTIFICATION WITH THE SCHOOL CURRICULUM There are so many legal documents in the educational field, but I consider that it is compulsory to emphasized the education right, for that reason, I have chosen as starting point the Spanish Constitution, to serve as introduction to the most relevant aspects of the national and regional legislation, as well as the fulfillment of this legislative matter in the educational project. The Spanish education system is governed by article number 27 of the Spanish Constitution(CE 1978), which has been developed by consecutive education acts which regulate fundamental aspects of the education System, as well as its integration with the other systems in the Spanish legal framework. This article establishes the right to education. The LOE, Organic Act 2/2006 of 3 rd May establishes that: The cooperation and collaboration for the educational administrations alongside the local corporation in the planning and implementation of the educational policies (article 1). And more specifically, the official curriculum minimum content, which the central government establishes for the whole of Spain: Royal Decree 1631/ 2006 of 29 th December currently regulates the Curriculum Minimum Content for ESO and Bachillerato. 5

7 Next, it has to be mentioned the curriculum definition that appears in LOE, in its Chapter III, article 6, subparagraph 1 of LOE defines the CURRICULUM as: The set of objectives, basic competences, contents, methodological approaches and assessment criteria for each subject regulated by this law. The aim of the Curriculum Minimum Content, set in RD 1631/ 2006 of 29 th December is to ensure a common basic education for all students within the Spanish Education System and to guarantee the validity of the certificates issued by the Autonomous Regions. As regulate in the above legislation and based on it, each Autonomous Region then draws up its own official curriculum. Consequently, this didactic program design has taken into account the official curriculum for the Autonomous Region of Castilla- La Mancha: Decree 69/2007 of 29 th May of DOCM (Castilla-La Mancha). This law covers the issues on schools autonomy and it specifically states that the Educational establishment (school) has autonomy to draw up, approve and implement its particular education project and, every year, should draw up a didactic program. To concrete all that it has been referred before, it has to be highlighted that title V, chapter II, Articles of LOE covers the issues on school s autonomy. It specifically states that the educational establishment (school) has autonomy to draw up, approve and implement its particular Education project. Law is continually perfected and complemented to adapt itself to educative centers reality. The school education project should include the specification of the official curriculum set by the education authorities and the cross-curricular coverage of education in values and other teaching aspects. The education project will take into account the school s environment: the socioeconomic and cultural aspects of the area and add actions plans to respect with efficacy the attention to diversified communities including students with special education needs, like gifted students, students with some physical disability, etc. In my practice center, I have met students with special needs, who need specific requirements inside the class to be able to attend the lessons and be educated in a normal way. In the following part I will explain the main characteristics of the center where I have been teaching. 6

8 The I.E.S. Rey Pastor high school is located in the center of the town of Albacete. The foreign population has been increasing in the past few years and their children attend in the school. In the current course we find students from Argentina, India and China, among other countries. Most of them have been living in the town for few years and especially the families from Argentina and China come from an educated background. One of the objectives of this secondary school, reflected in the school education project, is to promote full integration of foreign students. During my practice period I have been teaching to the diversity group, ESO and Bachillerato. In the year planning, I will focus on the first course of ESO, that it is the course in which I have spent more hours. In the first course of ESO most of the students are aged 12. Physically the students are very active and in constantly wiggling and moving. The students are feeling somewhat un-balanced and unsure of themselves. Intellectually, some of them will still be at the concrete operational level while most of them will be at the first stages of the formal operational level, following Piaget s theory of cognitive development, one of the many authors that we have deeply studied in the theoretical part of the master. Those are some aspects we should take into account when we deal with students of ESO. Now it is detailed some of the relevant aspects that all of them share: They are very enthusiastic about their likes and feel passionate about their dislikes. They have a strong need to conform to their peers and they will also need to develop the ability to work in groups and cooperate with others, and they will be encouraged to start developing some autonomous learning. The students are highly motivated, although some of them feel shy when using the spoken language. Pair work and group work should contribute to give them confidence and will be used as much as possible.in the practice, I have checked that all the most important aspects I have commented and, based on the Piaget s theoretical conceptual basis, are a constant in the behavior of most students of ESO. 5. YEAR PLANNING 5.1 INTRODUCTION The European Council, within the Common Reference Framework for the learning, teaching and assessment of foreign languages, has established some guidelines both for the learning of foreign languages and for assessing the competences a speaker has on that language. 7

9 The Common European framework stated that: A comprehensive, transparent and coherent frame of reference for language learning, teaching and assessment must relate to a very general view of language use and learning. The Organic Act of Quality in Education (LOCE, 10/ th December), establishes in its article number 68: the pedagogic autonomy of teachers and its performance as Didactic programs. Since in the prior article we mentioned the year planning, I would like to add that it will specify the general objectives for a specific year within that stage; it will set the organization and timing of the contents for the specific year, the methodology to use with those specific students and the assessment criteria. Below, some of the aspects that have been taken into account in order to ensure as far as possible, the avoidance of learning problems: 1) Drawing up a school educational project which takes into account the actual situation of that specific school, its location, the different groups involved in the education project, the organization, the students involved, how those with special education will be integrated into the project and the main objectives for that year in that particular school. 2) Planning of objectives and contents around interest areas, making reference to assessment criteria which are well-known and within the reach of the students rather than a list of items to teach. 3) Clear connection between objectives and contents and activities designed to achieve those objectives, defining as clearly as possible the assessment criteria. 4) Planning the units of works and therefore the lessons within those units in such a way as to include different strategies which make provisions for diversity in the classroom. 5) Organizing contents around long term tasks and projects which provide the blocks of content with meaning. 6) Regular follow-up of students with special needs, providing them with help and support throughout the teaching session and making them aware of their progress even if it is limited progress. 7) Using teaching materials which are as close to their interests as possible, making use of audiovisual aids, DVDs, CDs, computers, newspapers and magazines, etc. 8

10 8) Developing approaches which allow students to control their own learning process: giving them self-assessment questionnaires (My progress check) at the end of each teaching unit. 9) Encouraging student participation in decisions related to their teaching process. 10) Providing flexible grouping among various groups or within the same group. The year planning is an effective way for sequencing the objectives, contents and the evaluation of the teaching- learning process. In the introduction, I ve emphasized the importance of the English language in the current society, and that is why we have to show and encourage to our young students, that in a near future they will need to master this language to progress in a more effectively in their career. As teachers, we have to encourage them to improve their English language skills. This makes more likely to get a good and well paid job. Some of these essential elements that I have taking into account to design the didactic program are the following: Legal documents, relevant aspects regarding the school and the students attending to the school in general and the students in particular group and class, objectives, contents, assessment criteria, methodology, resources and materials, reinforcement are planning to attend to the diversity, timing and distribution of the units of work, etc OBJECTIVES It is necessary to mention the legislative General Objectives for ESO: (Decree 69/2007 of Castilla-La Mancha) a) To be responsible to assume their duties and to know and exercise their rights by respecting people, being tolerant, cooperative and supportive for people and groups as well as using dialogue as a mean of consolidating human rights as common values of a plural and multicultural society and to be prepared to be an active citizen of the democratic society. b) To develop and to consolidate discipline, study and individual and group working patterns as a necessary condition to efficiently perform learning tasks and as a way of personal development. c) To value and to respect the gender difference and equal rights and opportunities for both sexes. To reject those stereotypes which mean discrimination between men and women. 9

11 d) To enhance affection in all areas of personality and in their relationships with others as well as to reject violence, any type of prejudices or sexist behavior and to peacefully resolve conflicts. e) To develop basic skills in the use of information sources in order to, with critical sense, acquire new knowledge. To acquire basic training in new technologies, especially in information and communication technologies. f) To conceive scientific knowledge as a compendium of knowledge structured in different disciplines and to know and apply methods to identify problems in different fields of knowledge and experience. g) To develop enterprising spirit, self-confidence, critical sense, personal initiative and the capacity to learn to learn, to plan, to make decisions and to assume responsibilities. h) To understand and express correctly, in oral and writing, Spanish complex texts and messages and to begin reading and studying literature as well as developing a taste and habit in reading. i) To understand and express themselves appropriately in one or more foreign languages in communicative situations and to develop interest and respect attitudes towards language diversity. j) To know, value and respect the basic aspects of own culture and history and others as well as artistic and cultural heritage. k) To know and accept how their body, and others bodies, works, to respect the differences, to consolidate healthcare habits and to incorporate physical education and sport exercising to promote personal and social development as well as to know and value the sexuality dimension with its diversity. To critically value social habits related to personal health and quality of life and responsible and sustainable consumption. l) To know and assume the principles of sustainable development and their consequences for the entire society; to critically value the use of environment and to acquire care habits towards living beings and the environment by contributing to their conservation and improvement. m) To appreciate artistic creations and to understand the language of the different artistic expressions by using different expression and representation means. n) To acquire basic training for professional insertion and to apply the knowledge acquired as an orientation for the future insertion in the labor and academic market. 10

12 The Decree 69/2007 of Castilla-La Mancha for ESO, in accordance with the LOE and the Royal Decree 1631/2006, establishes objectives of foreign language teaching in ESO, taking into consideration the ones which are closely connected to the design of our innovation project. 1. To listen and to understand general and specific information from oral texts in different communicative situation, by adopting a respectful and cooperative attitude. 2. To orally express and interact properly in frequent communicative situations in a comprehensible way with a certain level of autonomy, being able to express opinions about topics of their interest. 3. To read and understand different texts from a suitable level according to the student s capacities and interests in order to look for general and specific information. 4. To write simple texts with different purposes about different topics by using suitable mechanisms of cohesion and coherence. 5. To know and use in a reflexive way, with autonomy and correction, linguistic norms of use, phonetic, lexical, structural and functional elements in real communicative contexts. 6. To use the language as an efficient instrument to learn, to look for information and to present projects in the different subjects, paying special attention to the use of information and communication technologies as well as multimedia resources. 7. To develop autonomy in the learning process and in self-evaluation; to think about own learning processes and to transfer to the foreign language the knowledge and communication strategies acquired in other languages. 8. To value the foreign language and languages in general, as a means of communication and understanding among people with different origins, languages and cultures, thus avoiding any kind of discrimination and linguistic or cultural stereotypes. 9. To read in the foreign language original books of their interest and develop reading habits as a source of pleasure and personal enrichment. Once I have studied in the master s program as national as regional laws, it can be concluded that they are similar about exposed content (national and regional objectives of foreign language teaching in ESO), and the main difference is the redaction way. 11

13 So, it is relevant the uniformity and coherence of the legislative material about specific objectives of the subject. 5.3 COMPETENCES Before developing the competence concept, I would like to comment its origin. Although, the LOCE mentioned the competences, without defining them or establishing which competences were relevant. The competences appear in the Spanish education system with the LOE. In fact, competences are mentioned in the 6 th article in which curricular is defined as: series of objectives, key competences, contents, methodology and evaluation criteria. A key competency is the ability to integrate knowledge, skills and attitudes in a practical way to solve problems and react appropriately in a variety of contexts and situations. It is the integration and application of theoretical and practical knowledge in settings outside the academic context. So, we must affirm that the inclusion of basic competences in the official curriculum pursue several aims: a) To integrate different types of learning, both formal, through the different subjects and non-formal. b) To allow the students to combine what they have learnt and use it when required in different contexts and situations. c) To guide the teaching practice, through the identification of contents and assessment criteria. The basic competences included in the legislation: Linguistic communication, mathematics, knowledge of and interaction with the physical world, dealing with information and digital competence, social and citizenship competence, cultural and artistic competence, learning to learn, autonomous learning, and emotional competence, which is specific of Castilla-La Mancha Region. CEFR, European Council, 2001 establish the following Key Competences: 1.-Communicative Competence: It is the competence to use language as the tool for both oral and written communication, for the representation, interpretation and understanding of reality, the building up and communication of knowledge and the selfregulation of thoughts, feelings and behavior. 12

14 Learning a foreign language improves communicative competence in general, since it develops the skill of both oral and written expression, using conventions and language appropriate for each situation, interpreting the different kinds of discourse in various contexts and functions. 2.-Mathematics: This competence involves the ability to understand, use and relate to numbers, their basic operations the symbols and the form of expression in mathematical reasoning, to produce and interpret different types of information as well as to broaden the knowledge of quantitative aspects and spatial reality, and to understand and resolve problems and situations related to everyday life, scientific knowledge and the labour and social world. 3.-Knowledge of and interaction with the physical world: It is supposed that the application of the scientific-technical idea to interpret the information received and to predict and take decisions with initiative and autonomy in a world in which advances that are produced in the scientific and technical world are very fast and have a conclusive influence in our life s, society and the natural world. It also implies the difference and value of the scientific knowledge in contrast with other forms of knowledge, and the use of values and ethic judgments associated with science and the technological development. 4.-Digital and information processing competence: It is the ability to search for, obtain process and communicate information, and transform it into knowledge. Different skills are involved, from access to and selection of the information, to its use and transmission through different media, and the use of ITC as an essential element of communication. Acquisition of this competence involves the use of technological resources to resolve problems efficiently, keeping a critical and reflective attitude when evaluating the available information. 5.-Social and civic competence: This competence enables the student to form a part of the society where they live in, understand how it functions and play a part, as a democratic citizen, in an ever more diverse society. It involves the individual patterns of behaviour which facilitate peaceful coexistence, relationships with others, cooperation, commitment, and the resolution of conflicts. The acquisition of this competence involves being capable of putting oneself in the place of others, accepting differences, being tolerant and respecting the values, beliefs, cultures and personal and collective history of those around one. 13

15 It implies an understanding of the social situation we live in, and the ability to respond to conflicts with ethical values, exercising with solidarity and responsibility the rights and obligations we have as citizens. 6.-Cultural and artistic competence: It implies knowledge, appreciation, understanding and critical evaluation of different cultural and artistic manifestations, both for the sake of enjoyment and as a source of personal enrichment, and considering them as part of the heritage of different cultures. It involves an appreciation of art and other manifestations of culture, keeping an open-minded attitude towards different types of Art, preserving the common cultural heritage and encouraging one s own creative capacity. 7.-Learning to learn competence: It involves beginning to learn and being capable of continuing to learn autonomously, looking for and finding answers in a rational manner. This means accepting a variety of possible answers to the same problem, and being motivated to use different methodologies to find them. It implies being able to organize one s own learning, and an efficient use of intellectual resources and techniques. The UNESCO International Commission on Education maintains that the concept of lifelong learning is the key that opens the door to the new millennium. The Organisation of Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) lays particular stress on the benefits of lifelong learning in the occupational sphere, claiming that it improves productivity and earning. 8.-Autonomy and personal initiative competence: This involves making choices following one s own criteria, carrying out the initiatives necessary to develop one s choice, and taking responsibility for one s decisions both in social and personal domains and in the workplace. The acquisition of this competence implies creativity, innovation, responsibility and a critical approach in the development of individual or group projects. 9.-Emotional competence (Castilla-La Mancha): This competence is acquired when a student can tackle any action, taking on the challenges it might involve in a responsible way, by establishing positive social relationships with the surrounding and getting to know oneself. Its acquisition entails development and empowerment of student s self esteem, confidence and their own possibilities. 14

16 During the theorical part of the master we have been told about Salovey and Mayer authors who widely developed the emotional intelligence concept that is related to people who have developed skills related to Emotional Intelligence understand and express their own emotions, recognize emotion in others and regulate affect. Although, I have just talked about the key competences settled in the CEFR European Council 2001, now, I will toughly develop the Communicative competence, the one directly connected with English as a Foreign Language. COMMUNICATIVE LANGUAGE COMPETENCE can be considered as comprising several components: Linguistic, sociolinguistic and pragmatic. According to CEFR Council of Europe, 2001, the communicative competence comprises five subcompetences: 1) Linguistic competence: knowledge of formal elements to formulate meaningful messages. Lexical competence, Grammatical Competence (morphology and syntax, is the ability to put into practice the rules that govern the language system), Semantic competence, Phonological competence, Orthographic competence, ortoephic competence (pronunciation). Learning a foreign language directly contributes to acquiring linguistic competence. Moreover, the contribution of the foreign language towards the development of this competence is essential in oral discourse since acquiring the skills of listening, speaking and conversation is particularly relevant. Learning a foreign language improves communicative competence in general, since it develops the skill of both oral and written expression, using conventions and language appropriate for each situation, interpreting the different kinds of discourse in various contexts and functions. 2) Sociolinguistic competence: Skills required to deal with the social dimension of language use. Learning a foreign language will also contribute to developing the learning to learn competence since it enhances language abilities in general, providing new possibilities and resources to understand and express oneself; it is also a good means to develop social and citizenship competence, since it encourages respect for other ways of thinking and to develop team work through interactions. Sociolinguistic competence is the ability to adapt the language used to a particular context, taking into account what is accepted in a given situation by native speakers. 15

17 3) Pragmatic: Learner s knowledge of the principles according which messages are: 4) Discourse competence (Organized and structured), is the ability to use different types of discourse according to the communicative situation and the speakers involved. 5) Functional competence (Used to perform communicative functions). The process of English language acquisition is conceived as a creative one in which the student, based on his/ her knowledge of the language, can formulate hypothesis in order to work out the rules governing the language. The mistakes made by the students are not seen as a kind of failure but as evidence of the progression of the learning process. The basic language skills (listening, speaking, reading and writing) have been integrated and form part of communicative activities. The aim is that students become capable of producing oral and written messages in English with at least the basic level of fluency and correction necessary for effective communication. To conclude this part, I would like to mention that the introduction of the Key competences implies changes in teaching methods: Essential learning(from knowledge to being competent), Constructive learning (understanding and applying), Reproductive learning(repetition), Research and use of technological resources, Student autonomy, Group work, Transfer of learning, coordination between departments, integration of formal and informal learning, among others. 5.4 CONTENTS, IDENTIFYING MINIMUM CONTENTS The contents for the first course of ESO are the following RD 1631/ 2006 and Decree 69/2007 of 29 th May of DOCM (Castilla -La Mancha), the contents have been grouped into three categories: Language skills, knowledge of the language in use and social and cultural dimension. Specifically for the 1 st year, the contents for the language skills in the four blocks are the following: BLOCK 1: Listening, speaking and conversing (The same for RD. 1631/ 2006 & Decree of Castilla- La Mancha). At this stage, oral communication is particularly important. This is why the first block focuses on developing communicative oral competence, exposing the students to a wide range of speakers so that they can appreciate the variety and nuances in the language. To end, it is important to use both traditional audiovisual resources and information and communication technology resources. In this part the students have to be able: 16

18 - To listen and understand short oral messages relating to classroom activities: instructions, questions, comments and dialogues. - To guess the general content of what is being listened to with the aid of both verbal and non-verbal elements. - To extract specific information from oral texts on predictable, everyday issues such as numbers, prices, timetables, names or places, presented through different support means. - To use basic strategies to understand oral messages: use of both verbal and nonverbal contexts, and of the previous knowledge one has of the specific situation. - To produce short oral messages with a logical structure and appropriate pronunciation. - To take part in short simple conversations in the classroom and in simulations related to personal experiences or interests. - To give appropriate responses to the information requested by the teacher or the classmates in classroom activities. - To develop strategies to overcome interruptions in the communication process, making use of verbal and non-verbal elements to express oneself orally in pair and group work activities, asking for repetition or clarification, among other strategies. BLOCK 2: Reading and writing (The same for RD 1.631/2006 and Decree 69/2007 dated of 29 th May of DOCM (Castilla-La Mancha). The reading and writing block includes procedures to develop discursive written competence. Written texts serve both as models for textual composition and as practice and learning of language forms. For the 1 st of CSE the following contents have been specified: - To understand basic instructions to carry out required activities appropriately. - To understand general and specific information(discarding that which is not relevant) in simple authentic and specially adapted texts, presented on paper and digitally, on various topics appropriate to the students age and related to the contents of other subjects in the curriculum. - To read with a certain degree of autonomy texts adapted to their age, interests and level of competence. 17

19 - To use basic strategies for reading comprehension: identification of the topic in a text with the help of both textual and non-textual elements, using previous knowledge on it, inferring meaning from context, and from the comparison between similar words or phrases in the languages the student is familiar with. - To identify some of the features and conventions typical of the written language and differences between written and oral language. - To develop guided written expression, such as completing or modifying simple sentences or paragraphs. - To draft up short texts with basic cohesive elements, with different communicative purposes, following models and using the most basic strategies of written expression. (Planning, drawing up, and revising). - To use basic spelling and punctuation rules, acknowledging their importance in basic communication. - To give an incentive to present written text on paper and electronically with a minimum standard of tidiness. BLOCK 3: Knowledge of the language in use, should promote the inference of linguistic rules governing the language, so that the students can see which elements in the foreign language are similar to those in the language(s) they are competent in an which strategies could be uses to make progress in the target language. Regarding the Knowledge of the language, these are the contents included in RD 1631/2006: Linguistic Knowledge: 1) To identify basic morphological elements common in language: noun, verb, adjective, adverb, preposition, etc. 2) To identify and use common expression, simple stock phrases and lexis relating to specific everyday contexts and contents from other subjects in the curriculum. 3) To use basic structures and functions relating to the most predictable everyday situations. 4) To identify and reproduce basic rhythm, intonation and stress patterns in words and sentences. 18

20 Reflection on the learning process: 1) To implement basic strategies to organize, acquire, remember and use the lexis covered. 2) To use Progressive learning resources such as dictionaries, encyclopedias, libraries and Information and Communication Technologies. 3) To guide reflection upon the use and meaning of grammar forms appropriate for different communicative intentions. 4) To initiate into self-assessment and self-correction strategies in both written and oral communication. 5) To accept mistakes as an integral part of the learning process and positive attitude to overcome them. 6) To organize individual work as a strategy to make progress in the learning process. 7) To interest to take advantage of the learning situations created both inside and outside the classroom. 8) To participate active in group-work and activities. 9) To show confidence and initiative to express oneself in public and in writing. BLOCK 4: SOCIO-CULTURAL ASPECTS AND INTERCULTURAL AWARENESS, which contribute to provide the students with an insight into customs, social relations, features and peculiarities of the countries where the language is spoken; that is into ways of life different from their own. This insight will foster attitudes of tolerance and acceptance, will enhance interest in learning about other social and cultural forms and will promote intercultural communication, since languages also contain features and traits of the cultures they serve as the means of expression. SOCIO-CULTURAL aspects and INTERCULTURAL awareness: - To acknowledge and value the foreign language as a communication tool in the classroom and with people from other culture. - To identify customs and everyday life features characteristics of the countries and cultures where the foreign language is spoken. 19

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