Is the Contextualization in ELT important ? .
Contextualization in ELT or Contextual approach is a concept of learning in which teachers present real-world situations into the classroom and encourage students to make connections between their knowledge with its application in their lives as members of the family and society. More meaningful learning outcomes are expected for children to solve problems, think critically and perform observations and draw conclusions in the long term life. In this context, students need to understand what it means to learn, what are the benefits, the status of what they are and how to achieve it.
The communicative approach, a part of Contextualization in ELT, is considered to be very proper to be applied in Indonesia nowadays since the method possesses its outcome for the learners to be able to communicate with success the target language within the real situation apart from solely understand the grammatical rule that construct the language (Knight, 2001). The characteristic of this method is the active involvement of students into the speaking activities without putting much emphasize on grammar and the communication assignments that they are conducting at the importance of how accurate is their language use. Furthermore, they are encouraged to act and behave like in the real situation while the model of role play and simulation are introduced (Harmer, 2007). The advantages of this method can be an interactive and harmonious relationship between learners and teacher. The relationship can be virtually seen in this method whereas the students develop the subject and initiative meanwhile the emphasis of language teaching is on the students’ cognitive and operational ability which allows the students to think about and express their views.
What is the advantages of Contextualization in ELT ?
However, the advantage of this method is improper being applied to a large class as the teacher can hardly control, monitor and guide them. The ideal number of the students that fits is twenty. Those students whose low proficiency in English may feel ashamed and difficult to speak in the target language. They might be so worried of making mistakes and being mocked by their colleague. It is important for a teacher as a conductor in the classroom to conduct counseling for them who possess weakness on any aspect of language skills. As for the crowded class itself, it can be divided into some small groups in order to the learners can ease themselves to acquire the learning as expected. Therefore, I would be very intentional to have the approach be applied in my school as it provides teachers and students chance to explore the use of language within a framework of social and cultural purpose (Burne, 2001).
To conclude, the communicative language teaching is now becoming a demand for its superiority and could be that one version among the various proposals for syllabus models, exercise types, and classroom activities may gain wider acknowledgement in the future, contextualization in ELT a status like other teaching methods. On the other hand, various interpretations might lead to homogeneous subgroups.