Teaching students English is a complex process that consists of several stages and includes various types of activities.
In the process of presenting and mastering English language material, various teaching methods are used.
Teaching methods are various methods of research, approaches to studying material for gradual scientific knowledge and obtaining results.
The method uses systems of operations when working on equipment, methods of scientific research and presentation of material.
When characterizing general didactic methods, we distinguish those that are used in teaching and applied to any discipline. Effective general pedagogical methods include:
- lectures, with the help of which new material is communicated, containing a description of complex systems, connections, and cause-and-effect dependencies;
- exercises that are aimed at activating a person’s motor abilities, at practicing skills and abilities with their constant repetition;
- educational discussion, based on the organization of a study group to exchange views and opinions on a specific issue;
- working with textbooks, which helps to obtain information from anywhere;
- video method, which is a complex didactic technology;
- a method of educational games based on the creation and imitation of real situations.
The choice of teaching method cannot be random. It is based on the requirements of learning theory about the appropriateness of methods, learning content, student characteristics and time resources. Learning is a creative process and depends on the available teaching tools and experience, personal abilities, and qualities of the teacher .
Also, a large part of the process of teaching English is extracurricular work (competitions, olympiads, conferences), which allows you to use a foreign language as a tool of knowledge and as a tool of communication, to join the culture of native peoples of the languages being studied.
As you know, the Olympiad in Foreign Languages is one of the traditional forms of extracurricular work. On the one hand, the purpose of the Olympiad is to test the knowledge of participants, establish the level of development of students’ communicative and linguistic competencies, ensuring their ability to communicate interculturally, identify the most talented students capable of mastering the English language, on the other hand, this intellectual competition is an effective means of motivating students to self-development. Knowledge of a foreign language at a high level increases the status of the future graduate in the labor market and opens up prospects for further improvement in professional activities.
The Subject Olympiad in English for university students has established traditions. As a rule, participants demonstrate their knowledge, skills and abilities (competencies) in all types of foreign language speech activities.
Participation in Olympiads increases motivation and interest in the language being studied and the culture of the people speaking this language, which students master as a means of intercultural communication. Also, participation in the Olympiad influences the development of personal qualities of students of any age, forms determination, independence, broadens their horizons and ideas about the culture of the country of the language being studied.
In the process of preparing for the English Language Olympiad, students develop various skills and abilities that help them successfully master this discipline.
Today, educational standards for general education in the English language provide for students to master the following speech skills: reading, listening, writing and speaking. English, like any other language, is the main tool of communication, therefore, when teaching a foreign language, it is necessary to pay special attention to the types of speech activity .
Range of skills:
Listening involves the use of interactive modern technologies, such as watching videos in English, listening to songs and dialogues, and so on.
Speaking involves the use of playful and collaborative learning techniques to broaden students’ horizons and vocabulary .
Reading involves the use of specialized texts in the educational process.
Writing includes exercises, presentation of texts, dictations to consolidate lexical and grammatical material according to the training program .
The development of speech skill is extremely necessary in the modern world, as it allows people to exchange information, establish contact and ensure interaction.
At the same time, it is necessary to take into account a number of external and internal factors that are of different nature. These include: the psychological state of the student, ignorance of grammatical and phonetic norms, lack of linguistic and speech means, level of self-esteem, motivation to learn, degree of erudition, insufficient mastery of meta-subject knowledge and others.
When preparing for the Olympiad, students become motivated to work on such factors in the learning process as:
- psychological factor “language barrier”, a certain psychological discomfort when producing a statement;
- methodological factor – lack of systematic and methodologically well-organized training of speech skills and abilities at all stages of training;
- linguistic factor – lack of potential vocabulary and difficulty in listening to foreign language speech.
In this regard, when developing a set of methodological techniques and tools for developing students’ unprepared oral speech skills, the main emphasis was placed on organizing the classroom and extracurricular work of students in the following areas:
- expansion (enrichment) of active and passive vocabulary on current topics;
- development of auditory speaking skills;
- formation of pronunciation (phonetic) and intonation skills of oral speech;
- formation of lexical and grammatical skills of speaking in English .
Olympiad tasks are interdisciplinary in nature and are aimed at identifying a wide range of humanitarian knowledge among Olympiad participants, which is associated with proficiency in foreign languages.
The linguo-sociocultural aspect within the disciplines of sociocultural and regional studies helps to expand students’ understanding of the country, history, literature and culture of the language being studied and to master techniques for overcoming difficulties that may arise in intercultural communication. The formation of sociocultural competence is carried out at all stages of teaching a foreign language. The means of mastering this competence are cultural and regional dictionaries, texts and personal communication experience.
The creative orientation of the tasks is important for identifying talented participants in the Olympiad, corresponds to the tasks that are solved during the educational paradigm in educational institutions, and also allows us to identify the level of formation of foreign language communicative competence at different stages of training, to diagnose the difficulties that arise in students in the process of learning a foreign language, check the effectiveness of teaching techniques and technologies. Participants in the Olympiad must constantly increase their creative potential, cultivate in themselves the need to systematically work on a foreign language, and systematically carry out self-analysis of their own speech activity. The diversity, complexity and versatility of tasks requires the presence and development of students’ skills in perceiving and generating speech in a foreign language.
The complex nature and versatility of most tasks requires certain skills in proficiency and use of a foreign language, in particular, skills in perceiving and generating foreign speech. Solving problems of both linguistic and non-linguistic nature is carried out in the process of speech activity and requires the student to achieve a certain level of communicative competence.
The process of preparing for the English Language Olympiad contributes to the development and formation of foreign language communicative competence: linguistic, speech, sociocultural, compensatory and educational-cognitive, and also allows you to significantly improve your level of foreign language training through extracurricular and classroom independent work.
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