ALC8029 : TESOL for Young Learners (Inactive)

Semester 2 Credit Value: 20
ECTS Credits: 10.0


•       To develop participants' understanding of the principles of how children learn a second language.
•       To develop participants’ abilities to evaluate the nature and/or effectiveness of teaching methods for young learners, in light of the above principles.
•       To develop participants’ abilities to evaluate the nature and/or effectiveness of ELT materials, in light of recent literature.
•       To develop the participants' critical awareness of global trends in language teaching.
This module is designed for those involved in TESOL for young learners in a range of contexts and focuses on developing knowledge and expertise of direct use to teachers. In addition to reviewing relevant theoretical aspects of TESOL for young learners, it provides an opportunity to consider ways of providing support for teachers to enable learners to develop their cognitive and linguistic abilities in English. These include analyzing the specific needs of learners from a non-English speaking background (NESB), developing effective language education programmes, evaluating and developing materials and tasks for teaching, and assessing and evaluating recent trends in language teaching worldwide. The module provides an overview of current approaches to working with young learners, which participants relate to their own contexts. Participants explore and critique curriculum frameworks for teaching English to young learners, consider criteria for evaluating a range of teaching/learning materials and adapt and design teaching materials.

Outline Of Syllabus


•       Session 1: Module Overview and Broad Approaches to Young Learners and SLA
What is a young learner? (Ellis, 2014)
Bilingualism vs formal learning (Copland & Garton & 2014)
Broad approaches to learning and classroom application (Rokoszewska, 2011)

Pedagogy for TEYL

•       Session 2: Age, Cognition and Language Learning
Teaching young learners: the younger the better? Debates (Pinter, 2011)
Language policy = teaching children earlier.
Piaget: child as an ‘active learner’ (Cameron, 2001)
Vygotsky: the child as social
Bruner: scaffolding and routines
Need to have age and cognition-appropriate teaching (Murao, 2014)

•       Session 3: Learning Through Tasks and Activities
Learning through tasks and activities (Cameron, 2001)
The notion of a task: children vs adults
Designing a task-based lesson for young learners
Problems to consider (Carless, 2002)
Strategies to maximize young learner’s involvement (Willis & Willis, 2006)

•       Session 4: Teaching Young Learners: Speech and Vocabulary
Children’s drive to find meaning (Piaget; Cameron, 2001)
Children and meaning making in speaking and listening
Activities for learning the spoken language
Children’s acquisition of word meanings and spoken forms (Rokoszewska, 2011)
Realistic goals for children (Cameron, 2001)
Vocab memorization activities

•       Session 5: Teaching Young Learners: Grammar
Grammar and young learners
Supporting young learners’ grammar learning
Activities for grammar learning

•       Session 6: Teaching Young Learners: learning through stories
Discourse organization of stories (Cameron, 2001)
Language use in stories
Choosing appropriate stories for young learners
Developing tasks around a story

Materials for TEYL

•       Session 7: Curriculum and Classroom Materials
Materials/Textbooks as default curriculum (Guerrettaz & Johnston, 2013)
Building connections between materials and young learners’ minds (Barrios & Debat, 2006)
Materials as agents of change (Masuhara & Tomlinson, 2008)
Coursebooks and ideology
The Global coursebook

•       Session 8: Describing and Analyzing ELT Coursebooks (Gray, 2010)
Materials analysis and evaluation
Analysing images
Materials analysis workshop

Global Practices in TEYL

•       Session 9: Culture in the Classroom
Changing definitions of culture
Language and world view (Sapir-Whorf hypothesis)
Culture and language teaching
Alternative approaches
Issues yet to be resolved

Session 10: Global Trends and Future Directions for TEYL
Digital game-based language learning
Story-reading projects
The future of TEYL (Graves & Garton, 2014)


      Session 11: Module Overview and Assignment Preparation

Teaching Methods

Teaching Activities
Category Activity Number Length Student Hours Comment
Guided Independent StudyAssessment preparation and completion140:0040:00N/A
Scheduled Learning And Teaching ActivitiesLecture113:0033:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyDirected research and reading120:0020:00N/A
Guided Independent StudyIndependent study1107:00107:00N/A
Teaching Rationale And Relationship

•       Students will be introduced to the theoretical components of the module during lectures.
•       Directed tasks will be given in order that students have opportunities for group discussion and for students to learn about a variety of teaching and learning contexts from other students in the group.
•       Private study time will allow students to read widely, engage with the literature and reflect on their own practice.

Assessment Methods

The format of resits will be determined by the Board of Examiners

Other Assessment
Description Semester When Set Percentage Comment
Essay2M100A written assessment of 4000 words (+/- 10%, excluding references)
Assessment Rationale And Relationship

Students will have a single assessment but have four options. To cater to the post-course aspirations of the students and to assess a sample of work which relates to these aspirations, it is necessary to provide these options for their assessment. Options are as follows:

1.       In light of theoretical approaches and concepts covered in the module, describe and critically assess some existing teaching materials used for young learners.
2.       Using theoretical approaches and concepts covered in the module, create then describe some teaching materials aimed at young learners. This may take the form of a coursebook-style lesson. After describing the student cohort these materials are intended for, carefully describe the aims of the materials and outline the links to relevant theoretical approaches and concepts.
3.       Select and describe three different approaches used for teaching English to young learners. Analyse and evaluate them in terms of your understanding of young learners’ cognitive development and foreign language learning processes. You should make reference to your own classroom experiences/practice to support or illustrate major aspects of your arguments.
4.       Describe and discuss issues related to one global trend in TESOL that has arisen in recent years.

Broadly, options 1-3 cater to students who wish to teach languages upon course completion as they relate to the day-to-day activities of language teachers. In options 1-3, students can demonstrate their understanding of the theory and practice of language teaching and learning with young learners.
Options 1 and 2 relate to critical reflection upon teaching materials. They will provide language teachers with the chance to evaluate and compose language learning materials used in schools. These are skills that can be used in their working life after course completion.
Option 3 relates to the link between teaching content and the cognitive development of young learners. This is another skill highly relevant and important to language teachers and students alike.
Option 4 caters to those who are interested in broader trends in the TESOL industry globally, and they have the option of undertaking a ‘traditional’ essay.

Reading Lists