ERIC Number: ED253076
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1984-Dec
Reference Count: 0
Teaching Foreign Languages to the Older Learner.
Zdenek, Joseph W.
A one-week, five-hour course in survival Spanish taught at an Elderhostel at Winthrop College included in its content the process of introductions and courtesy expressions, numbers and counting, telling time, days of the week, months, seasons, colors, cognates for describing people, talking about jobs and hobbies, verb forms for questions and answers, selected phrases for arriving in a Spanish-speaking country and traveling there, and suggestions for continuing the language learning process. All instruction was done in Spanish, with little emphasis on points of grammar. Student motivation was high, but limited contact and study time had to be considered in the learning process. Adult student characteristics that differ from those of traditional students and affected teaching techniques included a preference for handouts, hesitation to speak in class, concern more for correctness than communication, and hearing and vision problems. A review of recent literature on teaching and learning strategies of older adults is recommended, including research on differential communication and learning motivations, reduction of course content, change in the balance of grammar and vocabulary in instructional materials, and native reactions to language errors. (MSE)
Descriptors: Adult Learning, Classroom Communication, Classroom Techniques, Course Content, Course Descriptions, Curriculum Development, Introductory Courses, Minicourses, Older Adults, Second Language Instruction, Spanish, Student Characteristics, Student Motivation, Student Needs, Time Factors (Learning), Travel
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive; Guides - Classroom - Teacher; Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Audience: Teachers; Practitioners
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers: Elderhostels; Winthrop College SC
Note: Paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Council on the Teaching of Foreign Languages (Chicago, IL, November 16-18, 1984).