Situational Approach of English Teaching

The real and true meanings of words are known by the situation in which they are used by the speaker or the writer.So correct comprehension of the situation is very essential in order to pick up the desired meaning of particular structure.
In situational approach, the foreign language should be taught by forming links between the new language items and real situations in the class room.

English teacher tries to create a life- like classroom situation to teach new words and sentence pattern of language items

Types of situations- 

There are of two types-

-Real situations
-Artificial situations or contrived situations

Real situations - are those which can be experienced directly through sensory organs. These situations have maximum value in teaching a foreign language.
But every time, it is not possible to provide direct experiences in the classroom.

Artificial situations- Artificial situations include displaying of pictures, models and diagram. When these artificial items do not show real meaning then verbal situations can be created to make the meaning understand .
Gestures are also sometimes helpful to classify meaning of abstract idea.

Prof.A.S. Hornby "The situational approach makes great demand upon the teacher:.

Main characteristics of  Situation Approach

  • English teacher creates the association with the language item and real situation.
  • Practice and drill are stressed.
  • Examples are given on one language material in different situation. 
  • Questionnaire technique is adopted
  • Revision and repetition are stressed.
  • Presentation of new vocabulary or structure is emphasized. 
  • The situation in language teaching: -
The situational  teaching  of  a language makes the whole process useful and realistic situational teaching of a language is important because situations define our experience, they are associated with our experience.

It arouses in the students a desire to express them about it.
The new structures and new vocabulary items can be taught in a natural, meaningful and realistic manner.

How to create situations-

    Situational Approach of English Teaching, Types of situations, characteristics, Advantage and Disadvantage of  Situation Approach, How to create situations, ENGLISH PEDAGOGY Notes, CTET 2015 Exam Notes, TEACHING OF ENGLISH Study Material
  • Objects in the class room or in the teacher's bag 
  • Objects outside the class room
  • Pictures and charts 
  • Black board drawings
  • Gestures and action in the class room 
  • Verbal background

Class room  object- Table, chair, bench, desk, black board wall, door, window, floor, chalk, calendar, almirah

From the teacher's bag- toys, models, balls,cups, sancers, spoons, forks

Object outside the class room- The view from the window can be used to teach the context of interesting situations. Tree, flower, sky, clouds,bird, field, road are common objects.

Picture   and   charts-  These  are  important  aids  to  make  successful  use   of situational teaching.

Black-board drawing- A language teacher can use it for preparing simple drawings and line sketches on it. Different actions like walking, running, throwing pushing, picking, sitting etc can be easily drawn on the black board.

Actions and Gestures- Action like stand up, sit down, look at the black-board, go to the door, close and open the door etc can be created in the class room by the teacher himself.

Verbal background- Verbal situations can be used to teach some common phrases.

Advantage of situational approach-

  • It is action based approach so it creates interest in teaching.
  • It is based upon psychological principle of learning by doing and joyful learning.
  • It emphasizes on listening and hearing skill of language. Students behave like active learners.

Disadvantage of Situation Approach-

  • It is useful to the lower classes.
  • A  few vocabulary  and  sentence  patterns  can be  taught  through  this method.
  • It is not fit for teaching of prose, poetry and composition.
  • Text books cannot be taught by this method.
  • Due to excessive drill and repetition, the class room becomes monotonous.

Suggestions for improvement

  • Text books should be written on situational approach.
  • Insurance workshops and seminars should be arranged to trained English teachers in this approach.
  • Language material and associated situations should be enlisted.
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