Speaking about the teaching methods of the English language in Uzbekistan, I would like to point out that when teaching to speak, such methods as the direct method, the Palmer method, and the audio-lingual method are used.
Let us analyze the practical use of these methods in the process of teaching the English language in Uzbekistan, considering in parallel their essence.
The direct method was the subject of research and consideration of such eminent scientists as V. Fiester, B. Eggert, P. Passy, G. Sweet, O. Jespersen, etc. This method is characterized by the fact that when it is used the word foreign language is directly related to the concept, excluding the word of the native language, that is, a direct link is formed.
“The main purpose of teaching foreign languages was representatives of this direction who considered teaching practical knowledge of the target language.
Initially, such “practical” possession was identified with the possession of verbal speech, which is quite often encountered now. However, representatives of the direct method understood it as learning to read (for example G. Sweet)” [Spiridonova, 2010].
When using this method, the focus in teaching English is on reading. Although the application of this method in full would allow to expand its potential.
A very popular method of training in Uzbekistan is the method of Palmer. “As G. Palmer himself wrote in the Oral Method of Teaching Foreign Languages, for a number of years he taught by the direct method and came to the conclusion of its low effectiveness due to the lack of a rational approach to selection, language material, its organization and everything learning process.
The purpose of training, which was put forward by G. Palmer, was reduced to practical fluency in all types of speech activity (oral speech, reading, writing), because the task set for him was to prepare young people who were able to receive education in universities in the US and the UK. The first attempt to rationalize the learning process consisted in a clear division of the entire course of study into three main levels: elementary (1/2 years), intermediate (from 1 to 3 years) and advanced (from 1 to 3 years)” [Spiridonov, 2010]. The use of model sentences on the Palmer method is still a fairly common method of learning English in many countries, not exceptions, Japan and Russia.
As is known, the number of foreign language teachers who have special training for working with children is small. At the same time, the ability to competently teach communication in a foreign language to younger schoolchildren, who still do not fully possess communication skills in their native language, is a very difficult and responsible task. Love for the subject at this age is very closely connected with the feeling of psychological comfort, joy, need and readiness for communication that the teacher creates in the lesson.
The successful start of learning a foreign language helps to create a high motivation to learn foreign languages. The success of the training and the attitude of the students to the subject depends largely on how interesting and emotionally the teacher conducts the lessons. Of course, in the process of teaching foreign languages to pupils of primary school age, the game is of great importance. The more appropriate the teacher uses gaming techniques, visibility, the more interesting the lessons are, the stronger the material is absorbed.
In terms of methodological continuity, it is desirable to ensure a smooth transition of children from one stage of education to another, avoiding the loss of formed skills and injuring children as little as possible. The easiest way to achieve this is if throughout the entire course of study of a foreign language, to adhere to a unified learning strategy, which ensures a clear formulation and achievement of the learning objectives of each level in the interaction between them. Such interaction is achieved through cross-cutting programs and the use of benefits that consistently lead the child from the pre-school stage to primary school and from primary school to secondary school.
Speaking about the development and use in the educational process of new methods of teaching foreign languages, the following should be noted. “The situation in the field of foreign language teaching is paradoxical: on the one hand, new progressive pedagogical technologies are widely developed, on the other hand, the scale of implementation of these technologies is insignificant” [Rozanova, 2012, 19].
It should be noted that the Ministry of Education of Uzbekistan recommends exercises, which contain questions, answers to the proposed phrases, understanding of the semantic load of the text, exercises that allow you to master grammar and words. However, some “recommendations conflict with the current methodological culture in Uzbekistan, and teachers practice stubbornly adheres to the common traditions of memorizing grammatical structures and memorizing texts” [Milrud, www], which are based on the direct method and the method of Palmer.
Another method that has found its spread in teaching English to schools in Uzbekistan is the audio-lingual method. The essence of this method is that “the content of learning a foreign language is determined” [Spiridonova, 2010]. The founders of this methodology, C. Freese and R. Lado, attached great importance to the sound system and structure of a foreign language. In particular, R. Lado noted: “The most important difference between two languages is not the difference between words, no matter how striking they are. The main difference lies in their structures, since each language has its own system of sentence patterns, its own intonations, stresses, and its own system of vowels and consonants” [Spiridonova, 2010]. In accordance with this method of teaching a foreign language, sounds, stress, etc., should enter into it. Sound structure of the language. “Learning phonetics, according to the authors of the concept, is based on data from descriptive linguistics and careful description and comparison of sound systems of foreign and native languages, since the difficulties of mastering are due to discrepancies between the native and studied languages” [Milrud]. Audiolingual method is traditionally one of the main methods of teaching the English language in Uzbekistan and is based on multiple repetition of educational material: individual words, expressions and sentences.
Some researchers describe an English lesson in an Uzbek school this way. “In a lesson of 50 minutes, only 5 minutes are on average given to communicative tasks. AT In most cases, communicative tasks are performed in the form of pre-learned dialogues. An interesting practice in Uzbek schools is teamwork in a class of two teachers: a local teacher and a foreign speaker — a native speaker. Such lessons are usually more pronounced communicative-oriented. It should be emphasized that after the experience of joint language teaching together with a native speaker, the Uzbek teacher returns to his usual practice in his own class — non-communicative and teacher-centered exercises. One of the reasons is the task of ensuring admission of students to the university, where knowledge of a standard grammar is required for successful completion of the test. Communication-oriented tasks are perceived by Uzbek students as “fun” as opposed to studying grammar, that is, “real language learning”. Grammar exercises are taken seriously by Uzbek students and are considered “true teaching” (true teaching)” [Milrud, www]. As it follows from the given example, not enough attention is paid to dialogue when teaching Uzbek students English. But “dialogic communication is able to most clearly reflect the complexity of the speech interaction processes...” [Kudryavtsev, 2014, 57], can teach the student to quickly navigate in conversation, to adapt to the changed situation.
- Milrud R. P. Language policy and the teaching of English // Pedagogical drawing room R. P. Milrud
- Spiridonov A. V. History of foreign language teaching methods: Chita: Chita Pedagogical College, 2010. 35 p.