The origins of Communicative Language Teaching (CLT) are to be found in the changes in the British language tradition from the late 1960s. Before that time, Situational Language Teaching represented the major British approach to teaching English as a foreign language. It was taught by practicing basic structures in meaningful situation-based activities. But just as the linguistictheory underlying Audiolingualism was rejected in the United States in the mid-1960s, British linguists started to wonder theoretical assumptions of Situational Language Teaching: there was no future of predicting language on the basis of situational events. What was required was a closer study of the language itself and a return to the traditional concept that utterances carried meaning inthemselves and expressed the meanings and intentions of the speakers and writers who created them.
Noam Chomsky, who is is an American linguist, philosopher, cognitive scientist, and social activist, had demonstrated that the current standard structural theories of language were incapable of accounting for the fundamental characteristics of language-the creativity an uniqueness of individual sentences.British applied another fundamental dimension of language: The Fictional and Communicative potential of Language. They saw he needs to focus in language teaching on communicative proficiency rather than one mere mastery of structures.
Another cause for different approaches to foreign language teaching came from changing educational realities in Europe. With the increasing interdependence ofEuropean countries came he need to teach adults the major languages of the European Common Market. Council of Europes which is a regional organization for cultural and educational cooperation considered Education the major area of activity, and the development of different methods a high priority.
In 1971, a group of experts began to investigate the possibility of developing language courses on aunit-credit system, where leaning task are broken down into “portions or units”, which every unit correspond to a component of a learner´s needs and, at the same time, are related to all other units.
Wilkins, who is a British Linguist proposed a functional or communicative definition of language that could serve as a basis for developing communicative syllabuses for language teaching. According toWilkins the learner needs to understand and express the language. The learner, also, needs to acquire two types of meaning: notional category (concepts such as time, sequence, quantity, location, frequency) and categories of Communicative function (requests, denials, offers, complaints).
The work of the Council of Europe; writing of Wilkins, Widowson, Candlin, Christopher Brumfit Johnson, and otherBritish applied linguists on the theoretical basis for Communicative or functional approach to language teaching; the rapid application of these ideas by textbook writers; and the equally rapid acceptance of these new principles be British language teaching specialists, curriculum development centers, and even governments gave prominence nationally internationally to the Communicative Approach,or simply Communicative Language Teaching.
The aims the CLT are:
• Make communicative competence the goal of language teaching.
• Develop procedures for the teaching of the four languages skills that acknowledge the interdependence of language and communication.
A national primary English syllabus based on a communicative approach, which defines the focus of the syllabus as the “communicativefunctions which the forms of the language serve. What is essential in all of them is that at least two parties are involved in an interaction or transaction of some kind were one party as an intention and the other party expands or reacts to the intention. In her discussion of communicative syllabus design, Yalden discuses six Communicative Language Teaching design alternatives, ranging from a...
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