The Invisible Muzzle

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3 thoughts on “The Invisible Muzzle”

  1. What a great analogy. The worst part is Jean-Luc probably would feel as if something was wrong within him. I have experienced this as a student and am forever grateful to the kind native speakers that helped me break through. Still I struggle with some things and my monitor jumps in, but as I read more in Spanish new phrases come out of my mouth without thought. Grammar explanation , although I love it like I would a puzzle, has long lasting consequences and increases self doubt. At least this has been my experience. It is a great day when students communicate with joy instead of worry.

    1. Yes Melissa I was trying to make the point above that the results of being taught with drill and kill do not just have a neutral outcome. They take precious time from people’s lives, and in fact have a strongly deleterious effect on people as you said:

      …Jean-Luc probably would feel as if something was wrong within him…..

      I call that criminal, even if it is not done on purpose. Kind of pedagogical negligence based in pride. I call it serious.

      We’ve been round and round on how to react to this, of course. Our group’s conclusion has been loudly and clearly that if we teach well in our classrooms with CI then that is the best way to deal with such teachers as the one Jean-Luc endured. I’m finally starting to get that. Plus, we have the Bear and the Jackal, magical creatures, to fight anything that we really want to crush.

  2. Quite accurate and I’d like to translate it into French and have some parents here read it. Except for one thing. They are now starting English in Primary school here, so it would be hard to find a 13 year old boy who had never had English. The people teaching English in Primary school are the regular primary teachers who “had English” when they were students with the same teacher you described. So how do you think they teach it?

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