This methodology is not based on the usual methods by which languages are taught. Rather the approach is patterned upon counseling techniques and adapted to the peculiar anxiety and threat as well as the personal and language problems a person encounters in the learning of foreign languages. Consequently, the Community Language Learning learner is not thought of as a student but as a client. The native instructors of the language are not considered teachers but, rather are trained in counseling skills adapted to their roles as language counselors.
The language-counseling relationship begins with the client's linguistic confusion and conflict Community Language Learning. The aim of the language counselor's skill is first to communicate an empathy for the client's threatened inadequate state and to aid him linguistically. Then slowly the teacher-counselor strives to enable him to arrive at his own increasingly independent language adequacy. This process is furthered by the language Community Language Learning counselor's ability to establish a warm, understanding, and accepting relationship, thus becoming an "other-language self" for the client. The process involves five stages of adaptation:
The client is completely dependent on the language counselor.
1. First, he expresses only to the counselor and in English what he wishes Community Language Learning to say to the group. Each group member overhears this English exchange but no other members of the group are involved in the interaction.
2. The counselor then reflects these ideas back to the client in the foreign language in a warm, accepting tone, in simple language in phrases of Community Language Learning five or six words.
3. The client turns to the group and presents his ideas in the foreign language. He has the counselor's aid if he mispronounces or hesitates on a word or phrase. This is the client's maximum security stage.
1. Same as above.
2. The client turns Community Language Learning and begins to speak the foreign language directly to the group.
3. The counselor aids only as the client hesitates or turns for help. These small independent steps are signs of positive confidence and hope.
1. The client speaks directly to the group in the foreign language. This presumes that the group Community Language Learning has now acquired the ability to understand his simple phrases.
2. Same as 3 above. This presumes the client's greater confidence, independence, and proportionate insight into the relationship of phrases, grammar, and ideas. Translation is given only when a group member desires it.
1. The client is now speaking Community Language Learning freely and complexly in the foreign language. Presumes group's understanding.
2. The counselor directly intervenes in grammatical error, mispronunciation, or where aid in complex expression is needed. The client is sufficiently secure to take correction.
1. Same as stage 4.
2. The counselor intervenes not only to offer correction but to add idioms and Community Language Learning more elegant constructions.
3. At this stage the client can become counselor to the group in stages 1, 2, and 3.
The Silent Way Procedures
This method begins by using a set of colored rods and verbal commands in order to achieve the following:
To avoid the use of the vernacular. To create simple Community Language Learning linguistic situations that remain under the complete control of the teacher To pass on to the learners the responsibility for the utterances of the descriptions of the objects shown or the actions performed. To let the teacher concentrate on what the students say and how they Community Language Learning are saying it, drawing their attention to the differences in pronunciation and the flow of words. To generate a serious game-like situation in which the rules are implicitly agreed upon by giving meaning to the gestures of the teacher and his mime. To permit almost from the start a Community Language Learning switch from the lone voice of the teacher using the foreign language to a number of voices using it. This introduces components of pitch, timbre and intensity that will constantly reduce the impact of one voice and hence reduce imitation and encourage personal production of one's own brand Community Language Learning of the sounds.
To provide the support of perception and action to the intellectual guess of what the noises mean,thus bring in the arsenal of the usual criteria of experience already developed and automatic in one's use of the mother tongue. To provide a duration of Community Language Learning spontaneous speech upon which the teacher and the students can work to obtain a similarity of melody to the one heard, thus providing melodic integrative schemata from the start.
The complete set of materials utilized as the language learning progresses include:
A set of coloured wooden rods A set Community Language Learning of wall charts containing words of a "functional" vocabulary and some additional ones; a pointer for use with the charts in Visual Dictation A colour coded phonic chart(s) Tapes or discs, as required; films Drawings and pictures, and a set of accompanying worksheets Transparencies, three texts, a Book of Stories, worksheets