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ERIC Number: ED504237
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2007-Nov
Pages: 28
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: N/A
Critical Teaching: Drama as an Approach to Communicative Learning and Development. Teaching Research Project Report
Murillo M., Fernando
Online Submission
The following report gives account of a case study conducted at a school in Santiago, Chile in 2007. The purpose of this study was to explore the impact of teaching English as a Foreign Language (EFL) with an emphasis on developing metacognitive skills and critical thinking in high-school students. The vehicle used to trigger and develop such skills was drama. An elective English class formed by 16 students from different classes was chosen to carry out the study. Their initial level of proficiency was assessed through an oral interview in English, proving that their ability to speak in the target language was significantly lower than their theoretical knowledge of the language. During the next two months, students were exposed to a variety of activities aimed at developing awareness of the use of strategies for learning, communicative and socio-affective skills, starting by simple cognitive exercises and moving on to more complex tasks requiring the students to generate content, and thus, creating a bridge between their declarative knowledge and their procedural knowledge. The results of the study indicate that by the end of the teaching unit, students had developed more self-confidence in the use of the language, ability to work in teams and, most importantly, they valued the importance of moving their static theoretical knowledge to more active communicative activity. In conclusion, drama applied in the classroom significantly enhances the students' cognitive, metacognitive and socio-affective skills, providing them with new tools to understand their own inner processes and those of others, and to develop strategies for learning and communicating more effectively. For this reason, it would be advisable for teachers of any subject to consider the metacognitive and social dimension of their students to help them make sense of the content studied and to develop their autonomy as learners and persons. Drama has proven to be an effective vehicle to achieve this goal. An appendix includes: Specific information given by the school's psychologist; information regarding first contact; Some observations and entries from the Project's Journal; Field Trip Presentation--Evaluation Check List; and Final Presentation Assessment Rubric. Bibliography is included. (Contains 23 footnotes.
Publication Type: Reports - Research
Education Level: Elementary Secondary Education; High Schools; Secondary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Chile