The role of literature in learning English and its effects on learners' linguistic competence

Donceva, Marija and Daskalovska, Nina (2014) The role of literature in learning English and its effects on learners' linguistic competence. Yearbook of the Faculty of Philology 2014, Goce Delcev University, 5. pp. 214-225. ISSN 1857-7059

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Teachers can use literature as a powerful tool to teach a foreign language They can teach vocabulary, pronunciation, syntactic structures, grammar, stylistics and other aspects of the language depending on the goals of the curriculum and the interests of the students. Literature is authentic material that draws students into the world of fantasy and imagination. The effect is motivated students with positive attitudes towards learning. Poems, novels, and stories can bring powerful emotional responses to the classroom. Students can relate their own real lives to the stories, which contributes to affective and enjoyable learning. However, literature by itself is not enough; teachers need to use imaginative techniques for integrating literature work with language teaching. It is also necessary to use motivating methodology and to choose the right materials to keep students interested. As they use literature, they learn about language structures without even noticing, which helps them to develop their communicative competence and that is the ultimate goal of English learning. Learners become involved with the stories they read and the understanding of the words becomes less important as they are trying to get to the message of the story. If the activities are oriented towards enjoyment and creativity instead of memorizing grammatical rules, students may get to like literature. It can easily become a bridge between the learner and the culture of the people whose language they are studying. The aim of this paper is to explain how this can be achieved through different models of teaching. The first part focuses on the difference between referential and representational materials. Then, the reasons for using literature in the classroom are elaborated and the roles of the learner as a reader are explained. The conclusion is that literature should be the teachers’ strongest methodological and motivational tool to keep their students engaged in the learning process.

Item Type: Article
Subjects: Humanities > Languages and literature
Divisions: Faculty of Philology
Depositing User: Nina Daskalovska
Date Deposited: 01 Dec 2014 09:51
Last Modified: 01 Dec 2014 09:51

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