Teaching And Learning Of A Foreign Language At The Middle School Level Essay

Teaching And Learning Of A Foreign Language At The Middle School Level Essay

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This study examines the teaching and learning of a foreign language at the middle school level. Effective teachers are constantly seeking ways to make improvements on their instructional practices, their assessment techniques, and their engagements of students in the subject matters. Therefore knowledge of best practices encourages teachers to implement teaching methods that are more authentic, experimental and challenging (Zemelman, Daniels, & Hide, 2012).
Many schools at every level are constantly balancing their budgets and offsetting reductions in government allocations by eliminating foreign language requirements, even though the demand for and enrollment in foreign language courses is at its highest level since 1968.  At public K-12 schools, enrollment in foreign language classes between 2007 and 2008 reached 8.9 million individuals, about 18.5 percent of all students.
The United States is largely monolingual. In fact, only about 15 to 20 percent of Americans consider themselves bilingual, compared to 56 percent of Europeans surveyed in 2006 by the European Commission (Franklin, 2013).This lack of foreign language education for students persists to this day, despite much research suggesting that bilingualism has a significant positive effect on student’s linguistic, cognitive and educational development. Bilingualism has cultural benefits as well. The inability to speak a foreign language makes it difficult for Americans to compete globally on a linguistic and cultural level.
A new Gallup poll reveals that about one-fourth of the country can speak a language other than English well enough to hold a conversation. Spanish is the most frequently spoken second language, followed by French and German. The poll also shows that ...

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...the most effective methods of teaching a foreign language.
Teaching Methods
One of the challenges of teaching foreign languages is that many students do not develop long term proficiency in the subject matter. There are many different teaching methods and approaches which may help enhance students’ proficiency with a foreign language. The most recognized and commonly used approaches and methods for teaching a foreign language are: The Grammar-Translation Approach, The Direct Method or Natural Approach, Reading Approach, Audio-lingual Approach, Community Language Learning, The Silent Way, The Communicative Approach, Functional Notional Approach, Total Physical Response Approach. This study will focus mainly on the efficiency of implementing the Communicative and the Direct Approaches in the foreign language classroom.
The Direct Method is also known as the Natural A

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