Comparison of two foreign language teaching methods in teaching vocabulary: the case of TPR and GTM

Karaata, Cemal (2012) Comparison of two foreign language teaching methods in teaching vocabulary: the case of TPR and GTM. In: 2nd International Conference on Foreign Language Teaching and Applied Linguistics (FLTAL’12), 4-6 May 2012, Sarajevo.

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There is general consensus among applied linguists, foreign language teachers/learners and researchers that vocabulary learning is an essential part of mastering a second language (Schmitt, 2008: 329). In order to function adequately in English, some threshold levels of vocabulary knowledge have been proposed in literature. Nation (2006) proposes that for 98% comprehension of a reading text, 8000 to 9000 word-family vocabulary is needed. For oral discourse, a vocabulary of 6000-7000 is suggested by Nation (2006) and that of a 5000-7000 by Schmitt (2008). Many researchers have agreed that knowing a word means much more than knowing its meaning (Aitchison, 1994; Laufer, 1997; Nation, 2001; Schmitt, 2000) and considering the various aspects of knowing a word (e.g. spelling, meaning, grammatical behavior, collocations, register), vocabulary acquisition is an incremental and time-consuming process where learners need multiple exposures in different contexts. Hence, using the most effective methods in vocabulary teaching should be a primary concern for language teachers, given the limited class time and the mass amount of vocabulary to be learned. This experimental study is a comparison of two well-known methods, Grammar Translation Method (GTM) and Total Physical Response (TPR), in teaching vocabulary by using a famous novel adapted as a graded reader. The participants were 8th low-intermediate 8th graders at a private school in İstanbul, Turkey. The control group (n=19) was taught 80 target words compiled from the assigned book through GTM techniques whereas the experiment group (n=18) through TPR. During GTM explicit vocabulary teaching, left brain activities were mostly used whereas in TPR teaching, mostly right brain activities were preferred. A pre-test and post-test design was used with a 100-item multiple choice vocabulary test for both tests. Results revealed a statistically significant difference on part of the TPR group. Pedagogical implications and a TPR model for vocabulary teaching are discussed.

Item Type: Conference or Workshop Item (Paper)
Uncontrolled Keywords: Vocabulary acquisition, GTM, TPR, explicit vocabulary instruction
Subjects: P Language and Literature > P Philology. Linguistics
Depositing User: Mr. Fatih Ozturk
Date Deposited: 12 Jun 2012 08:37
Last Modified: 12 Jun 2012 08:37

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