chapter  2
16 Pages

Pedagogical approaches to teaching Primary Languages

Children learn best when they are learning or doing a task for a purpose. Everyone learns best if they understand why they are learning and what the ultimate aim is.

It is probably true to say that this is one of the principal reasons for our nation’s dismal failure in language learning. Too many lessons have concentrated in the past on irrelevant context and content. In addition, it is hard to convince children (and adults) that learning another language is important when, as previously mentioned, everyone seems able to speak English, when it is the language of choice for business and culture, and also when everyone appears to want to speak English. But ‘English is not enough. Young people from the UK are at a growing disadvantage in the recruitment market’, ‘the UK desperately needs more language teachers’. These are further quotes from the Nuffield Foundation’s inquiry (Nuffield Foundation 2000).