The focus of the current paper is to determine how classroom management influences learning in an ESL learning environment. A discussion of lessons learned, as well as reflections as mentee would form a major part of the paper. …
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Critical Pedagogy Applications in Observed Classroom Management
One is interested in the topic since during the course of observing an Advanced English Grammar (ALI 345) class, one came into reckoning with the fact that the instructional style and approach, factors which are within the control of educators, could significantly impact on the behavior and actual academic performance of students within the traditional classroom setting. After the background literature, the discussion would proceed with outlining the course context, the student profile, and the overall observed classroom management approach. A discussion of lessons learned, as well as reflections as mentee would form a major part of the paper. The article written by Kumaravadivelu (1994) was instrumental in supporting the current topic as the author delved into strategies which could actually improve classroom management. As specifically noted, strategic framework for L2 teaching utilize macrostrategies which were differentiated to microstrategies, to wit: “macrostrategies are general plans de- rived from theoretical, empirical, and pedagogical knowledge related to L2 learning/teaching.A macrostrategy is a broad guideline, based on which teachers can generate their own situation-specific, need-based microstrategies or classroom techniques” (Kumaravadivelu, 1994, p. 32). In so doing, the information synthesized from the article could be used to evaluate the strategies used and observed in the specific classroom setting. Another article, written by Clayton (2010), the author’s design of a critical pedagogy, defined as “a set of instructional practices that focuses on the structures present in real, situated learning spaces (McLaren, 1986) in order to create egalitarian, participatory, and empowered participants, allowing them to receive language and content learning while interacting as equal partners with others” (381) was acknowledged to be useful in enhancing classroom management in the observed setting. Clayton (2010) emphasized the need to acculturate students from diverse cultural backgrounds to the culture they intend to practice the second language being learned. The method was instrumental in improving participation of culturally diverse students within the ESL learning environment. (Clayton, 2010). The critical pedagogy method was likewise acknowledged by Johnson (1999) who likewise recognized the value of this approach in empowering students through the ESL learning process by designing effective classroom management techniques. It is interesting to note that Johnson’s assertion that “although students can be more or less empowered-for example, they can be given more responsibility for their own learning, they can take part in the design of their own courses, and they can be given more meaningful and less competitive assignments-teachers still retain authority in the classroom (Oyler, 1996; cited in Johnson, 1999, p. 560). Through the classroom management techniques that were applied in the observed Advanced English Grammar (ALI 345) class, one recognized that the role, style, and application of critical pedagogy
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