①「CLIL and Cognition in Elementary School English Education」
Tony Ryan (愛知教育大学)
In this presentation, Tony argued that future elementary school English education in Japan should de-emphasize product-based syllabi and give greater emphasis to process-based syllabi which focus on learning activities that engage students at not only Bloom’s lower order thinking skills levels, but also at the higher levels of cognitive thinking. The goal should be to engage the analytical, critical and creative thinking skills of the students when learning English rather than the memorization of declarative knowledge. He noted that other subjects’ lessons at elementary school challenge students to produce these levels of thinking more than do current English lessons - even those developed from the current ‘We Can’ textbook series. He then outlined two lessons he had constructed and taught to Year 6 pupils, and then reviewed their outcomes in terms of the engagement of the learners' higher cognitive levels of thinking. Tony reported on an initial CLIL teacher-training course he had created and taught at his university to undergraduate English education students. Teacher-trainees created and then taught mock lessons using the Year 6 science textbook. Finally, Tony re-iterated his hope that the post-2020 Year 5 and 6 English curriculum incorporate learning activities geared towards generating higher levels of cognitive thinking.
②「Developing students’ critical thinking skills through college-level English education on Japanese issues」
The presentation reports our yearlong experience of teaching 71 college students from 4 reading courses. We aimed to observe the development of students’ critical thinking by CLIL method. The method was expected to stimulate college students’ academic curiosity toward subject matters. As the subject, Japanese sociology, especially the so-called Galapagos syndrome, was chosen. Japanese learners still tend to consider that English is to express western issues, so it was hoped that learning about Japanese society in English would make learners feel that English is a language for all cultures including Japanese issues. CLIL’s emphasis on cognitive development was also expected to enhance students’ critical thinking skills that have been assessed low by international standards. In a student-centered environment, they read a variety of authentic materials to deepen their appreciation of other viewpoints. Activities included teaching articles by students, writing reflective essays, and students’ presentation based on their research on the topics. After a year, 57% of the students agreed with the benefits of learning new academic content in a foreign language. Their opinion essays showed some development of cognitive skills such as understanding, analyzing, evaluating, and most students showed increased confidence expressing opinions in research presentation and discussion.