EFL materials

The Train Blogger

I’m feeling desperate. Every year, new ESL materials are created to a serve the very unique and arguably biggest market for foreign language learning: adults and ESP. I’m trapped in a world where this decontextualised nonsense is something most of my peers see as perfectly normal, applauding the great advances in materials design as if it’s anything more than polishing an inappropriate, deceitful way to promise students improvement in their foreign language development.

The adult teaching context is, in my experience, complex compared to that of young learners. Though motivation in YLs is a key issue with no shortage of published material, they could be stereotypically described as language sponges — soaking up new language as it is presented to them. Adults, though they still in theory have the ability to soak up new language, more often have a crippling layer of difficulty in the form of inhibition. It seems to me…

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