Научная статья на тему 'Инновационный подход в системе иноязычного образования'

Инновационный подход в системе иноязычного образования Текст научной статьи по специальности «Науки об образовании»

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Ключевые слова

Аннотация научной статьи по наукам об образовании, автор научной работы — Trubina Zoya Igorevna

Scientific and technological progress creates a new social order for educational institutions. The society needs the professionals who are constantly evolving in their professional field and are able to transform the received knowledge and find creative solutions to problems. The originality of the thinking processes is an essential characteristic of a modern specialist. Therefore the problem of creative thinking development is determined by the particularities of the innovative approach in the educational system. Foreign languages have the potential for the use of innovative teaching methods and contribute to the process of formation of students’ creative thinking.

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Текст научной работы на тему «Инновационный подход в системе иноязычного образования»

УДК 372.881.111.1 ББК 74.268.19

Z. I. Trubina Nizhniy Tagil, Russia



Scientific and technological progress creates a new social order for educational institutions. The society needs the professionals who are constantly evolving in their professional field and are able to transform the received knowledge and find creative solutions to problems. The originality of the thinking processes is an essential characteristic of a modern specialist. Therefore the problem of creative thinking development is determined by the particularities of the innovative approach in the educational system. Foreign languages have the potential for the use of innovative teaching methods and contribute to the process of formation of students' creative thinking.

Keywords: creative thinking, foreign languages, innovative methods



Научно-технический прогресс создает новый социальный заказ для образовательных организаций. Обществу нужны профессионалы, которые постоянно развиваются в своей профессиональной сфере и способны трансформировать полученные знания и находить творческое решение проблем. Оригинальность мыслительных процессов - неотъемлемая характеристика современного специалиста. Поэтому проблема развития творческого мышления определяется особенностями инновационного подхода в системе образования. Иностранные языки обладают потенциалом

для использования инновационных методов обучения и способствуют процессу формирования творческого мышления школьников.

Ключевые слова: творческое мышление, иностранные языки, инновационные методы

Today we can observe how actively innovative methods are being introduced into the process of education. According to N. A. Mitina [Mitina, 2013], an innovative teaching method is a project of specific pedagogical activities, consistently implemented in practice, the main indicator of which is the progressive beginning compared with the prevailing traditions and mass practices.

The search of new means, forms and methods of teaching plays a big role in this process, the issues of innovations in teacher's training have also become important.

Innovations have always been an important characteristic of educational activities, which caused the development of pedagogy in general. With regard to the modern education, pedagogical innovations are wide-spread — their main purpose is the balance between social order and individual human needs. So, it is necessary to mention the tasks of innovative educational activity. They are the following:

- improvement of students' training and education;

- teachers' involvement in the development of new educational technologies;

- the conveyance of best teaching ideas.

A.V. Khutorskoy [Khutorskoy, 2005] regards pedagogical innovations as a purposeful change which brings some sustainable elements to the educational environment and thus improve the educational system as a whole. Pedagogical innovations appear in the educational system as a result of adaptation to the constantly changing social environment, so they cover educational technologies, educational programs and standards, educational process, organization of lessons and the environment of educational organizations.

The research in the field of innovative development of education began in the first half of the twentieth century; the term "innovation" was offered by I.

Shumpter and G. Mensh to name scientific discoveries in new technologies or products [Ilienkova & Shumpeter, 2008, p. 84].

Pedagogical innovations are considered to be innovations in the educational system, improving the course and results of the educational process. Pedagogical innovations link pedagogical traditions with the design of the future education.

One should also consider that "novelty" and "innovation" have some differences: novelty is a wider concept that includes not only application of new knowledge and skills in the activities, but also new forms of its organization and the discoveries made in a particular area. An innovation is already the result of introduction of a novelty to change the object. Novelties can become an innovation as soon as they are implemented in practice, and can just accumulate, without finding practical application. Thus novelty is the means and innovation is the process of implementing tools which bring new elements to the system [Fatkhutdinov, 2005, p. 15].

An important component of the effectiveness of the educational innovation process is the willingness of teachers to introduce something new into their activities.

According to V. S. Lazarev [Lazarev, 2003, p. 4] "the development of innovative process in education is characterized by the following actions:

- determining the need for changes;

- gathering information and analyzing the situation;

- pre-selection or independent development of innovations;

- thinking about implementation of the development;

- the actual implementation, including the trial use of innovations;

- a prolonged use of innovations in the process where it becomes a part of ordinary practice.

A pedagogical innovation like any significant process of changes in the sphere of human activity has its preconditions. Often the reasons for consideration and introduction of innovations to the educational system include the recent crisis and the need for scientific support of the innovative activity.

In all cases, innovative educational approaches are considered by scientists a connecting link between science and practice because they combine the features of both and in fact reflect the relationship between them. Innovative approaches to teaching are divided into two main types, each of them corresponds to one of the main orientations of the educational process [Lukovtzeva, 2008]:

- innovation-modernization. It is based on the traditional reproductive orientation, that means that the teaching process is aimed at the transfer of knowledge and skills and development of students ' algorithmic actions;

- innovation-transformation. Its essence is a problematic orientation. This innovative approach focuses on the research which means that it creates in students the ability of self-searching and application of new knowledge. It also shapes the experience of creative activity.

Therefore the reproductive and problem orientation types of teaching are reflected in innovative teaching approaches.

The first type transforms the traditional teaching process based on the reproductive activities of students. According to this approach traditional didactic objectives and expected results are identified in the teaching process. The objective of the second approach is to develop the ability to work independently with new knowledge and to build one's own sequence of actions [Wizer & Folomkina, 2003].

Today the modern society is undergoing social changes resulting from scientific and technological progress in all spheres of activities. As a result we can see the change in the social order and increasing need for creative, socially active specialists, who are able to find solutions to the problems of their professional activities independently. Therefore, educational innovations are an important condition for the development of all modern systems of education.

Today the new educational organisation requires a different focus due to the fact that at this stage of its development the society makes high demands on students' development and the quality of teaching material. There is one more important trend to teach children to apply a large amount of information in their

life. It is therefore important to organize the educational process so that students should be involved in training activities, see the results and evaluate their work.

Qualitative changes occur in the organization of educational process. A leading authority of teachers does not play a special role today any more, but their cooperation, collective understanding and mutual students-teachers interaction do. Passivity in receiving ready-made knowledge, waiting for the instructions from teachers are changed to the initiative and creativity of students. These changes characterize the alternative to the traditional type of teaching — innovation [Taubaeva & Laktionova, 2001]. Innovative approach requires new teaching methods.

The term "method" is interpreted in different ways. N. V. Basova [Basova, 2009, p. 57] says that there are more than 200 definitions. The word in Greek means "a way to achieve a goal." E. S. Polat [Polat, 2003, p. 67] defines "method" as a didactic category; a set of operations to master a certain area of practical or theoretical knowledge of a particular activity. This is a way of organizing the learning process.

Due to the fact that creative people are more adapted to socialization in a constantly changing and updating world, the modern society needs pedagogy that develops creative potential of students. Education should be a central element of the development of creative potential of students by using innovative teaching methods. For example, gaming technology, case studies and idea network.

The result of teachers' purposeful work should be education of a person who has the ability to rely on his/her own knowledge and power, social mobility, emotional balance and commitment to action.

It should be noted that the problem of the necessity for rapid learning foreign languages demands active methods, where a student represents the "subject" of the educational process — performs creative tasks, participates in dialogues with the teacher (answers his/her questions and asks his/her own).

When using active methods a teacher should involve the principle of direct participation, which implies that he/she will provide an opportunity to work in such

a way that each student becomes an active participant in the educational process. A teacher collaborates with learners and treats them as equal members of the educational process where he/she acts as an expert and organizer of interpersonal relationships [Yelukhina, 2002].

Among especially effective methods we can name the creation of situations where students can defend their opinion, discuss, ask questions, assess their own work and answers, and choose possible ways of solving educational tasks. We can classify the innovative methods used in the process of teaching a foreign language in the following way:

First, by the way of organizing the educational process:

- logical and task methods, which include gradual organization of the learning process, formulation of the pedagogical objectives, search for solutions, evaluation of the achieved results;

- training methods, which represent a system of educational activities for the optimization of the sequence of cognitive actions and ways of solving problems. This is a specifically created environment where students can easily identify their pros and cons and evaluate their achievements;

- gaming techniques, characterized by a gaming form of the educational relationship where educational objectives are already included in the gaming content (business games, round tables, discussions).

Secondly, by the forming direction:

- methods of developing the experience of creative activity: methods using difficulties, methods of temporary and sudden prohibitions, methods of lack of information, methods of absurd;

- methods of creative group problem solving: brainstorming and synectics.

It also makes sense to include the use of such creative tasks as solving and designing puzzles, crosswords, elements of theatrical performances to create logical grids and charts, and other possible options where students can demonstrate their creative potential.

Brainstorm is an innovative method that engages students in the discussion and search of ways to solve a problem or a task. Thus it stimulates creative activity of students. The fact that a large number of options is offered is encouraged. Brainstorm is followed by a discussion of these methods of solving the problem. The group discusses the most suitable and applicable ones [Yelikeeva, 2010]. It should be remembered that the problem under discussion should be relevant, have a practical orientation and be close to students to motivate them for the active cognitive activity. Such techniques make one important requirement in preparation for their use — the problem should imply a variation of its decision.

Mind-maps and cluster methods are also effective teaching tools for planning and development of associative thinking. The basic principle of these methods lies in the special visualization of thoughts — refusal of writing the educational material in a linear fashion.

An innovative method of a mind-map or "memory card" was developed by Tony Buzan [Akimenko, 2010]. Records look like spontaneous and associative written thoughts on paper, and the subject of the generation of ideas should be in the center of the sheet and in the constant center of students' attention. The application of this method contributes to the accurate rendering of the ideas and relationships of its elements, concepts based on the identified themes and development of associative thinking. Mind-maps are easily editable and are also very easily reproduced in students' memory.

Here is the algorithm for making a mind-map:

- a teacher writes a topic in the center of the page, the blackboard or a smart


- a teacher writes down all the associations that students say on one side of the board. In this stage, the most important thing is not to evaluate their answers, so there can't be "the worst or best" association;

- the teacher is to identify key concepts that are written on the "branches" from the main topic;

- students write down the remaining associations on the lines from these key concepts. In this stage, students can say the ideas which should also be recorded.

The branches of the mind-map can be numbered, colored or symbolized for clarity.

Teachers can also use software or online resources to compile a mind-map, for example, mindmeister.com offers all the necessary tools for the design and creation of ideological cards.

The following method is called a cluster (cluster method). A cluster is a graphic classifier, which determines various relationships between objects, phenomena and ideas. This method helps to activate the imagination and individualization of education.

By connecting various facts and concepts students form the systematic mental processes. This method is similar to the method of memory cards, teachers also specify a defining concept or topic, and write the keywords or phrases chosen by students from the text around it.

The use of clusters in the process of learning a foreign language is understood as the union of two or more topics for further consideration and study. The cluster method contributes to the creation of favorable conditions for students' learning, the ability to structure the material under study, to identify the main ideas, to identify problems and ways to resolve them. This technique allows students to understand what they learn better.

The algorithm of drawing up a cluster is the following:

- at the top of the board or a sheet of paper a key word or topic is indicated;

- students say their associations connected with the topic, a teacher records them on the board.

Ideas and associations connect in keywords and key phrases and are combined into a core;

- each core of each cluster produces the associations that build a complex logical chain; - all clusters are systematized using connecting lines.

The clusters are quite versatile — they can be used when working with a text, as it will serve as a clear and evident plan. Clusters can also be introduced during the first acquaintance with the topic, or the systematization of the already learned material or text. This method is successfully used for individual or group work.

The cluster technique allows students to retell texts easier, because it is simpler to remember a large amount of data, using such logical chains that effectively influence students' cognitive motivation. Due to the fact that every cluster is unique and not subject to grading by a teacher, students develop their creative thinking.

Case study or case-method is the next innovative teaching method, which includes real situations in the educational process which students face in their life. In the course of the case method, students are asked to analyze a certain situation, understand the problem, identify possible ways to solve it, discuss them and decide which of them is the most effective. The base of a case is the actual material that reflects the real situation or is close to it.

The algorithm of using the case method is the following:

- introduction to the situation and problem;

- analysis of the information;

- group work: finding the ways of solving the problem;

- analysis of each method (definition of pros and cons, evaluation), comparative analysis;

- presentation of the work done;

- rating of groups and the contribution of each member;

- sizing up.

A teacher performs the role of an observer and organizer of the classwork: he directs the students' discussion. He also provides introduction and conclusion, is responsible for the working climate in the group, supports the business style of communication between groups, evaluates the group or individual work and the outcome on the basis of students' objectivity and validity of their judgments.

It is important to keep in mind that when working with the case, the problem proposed to students must be of an appropriate level of complexity and involve multiple solution methods, and in the course of the discussion, each group should identify its strengths and weaknesses, to analyze the problem and justify their point of view.

The specificity of the case method allows students to show their knowledge through contributions to the group work even with minimal knowledge of a foreign language. It is a big advantage to work with students at various levels of language proficiency. This method allows teachers to involve everyone in classroom activities.

When speaking about the methods of using Internet in foreign language teaching, it is necessary to focus on the leading component of the training — communicative orientation. And the Internet with its didactic capabilities can provide training in all types of speech activity (listening, speaking, reading, writing). The use of Internet resources in foreign language teaching helps to engage students in creative activities and allows them to visualize their work. Their implementation in the educational process enhances cognitive activity of students, making the educational process more interesting and effective.

The online tool ZOOBURST (zooburst.com) allows teachers to create 3D books and make the process of writing stories in a foreign language funnier.

The book can be created from already prepared images or the website offers a teacher to download his/her graphic material (drawings, photographs, collages). Using this service, students will be able to make up their own stories, to supply them with three-dimensional and animated illustrations and share their stories, regardless of age.

Another online resource that can be effectively applied on the basis of learning a foreign language, is storyjumper.com. It's a service, a set of tools which allows to create illustrated books or animated and colorful presentations. Like ZOOBURST this website involves the use of the existing resources and materials

downloaded by the users. The site also contains a huge library of books created by children.

LEARNING_APPS (learningApps.org) is an application to support educational process through interactive modules that can be offered on the site or created online. This service has a large number of prepared schemes of exercises (gap-filling tests, finding the match, the chronological line, puzzles, quizzes, crosswords, etc.), which simplify teachers' preparation for the lesson. Also students themselves can use prepared schemes to create their own tasks. The blocks of these tasks will be saved, allowing teachers to use them at any time.

Thus, new methods using the Internet and computer technologies contribute to the enhancement of motivation and interest of students to learn foreign languages, significantly improving the process of teaching and having advantages over traditional methods. A modern teacher is characterized by a high level of professional competence, manifested in the following qualities: flexibility, pedagogical thinking, mobility, adaptability to complex situations, ability to work in a group, openness to new ideas, commitment to professional development. An important role in the continuous professional growth is assigned to the readiness of teachers to creative activity. A professional self-education provides the basis for this competence, in particular, mastering of new educational methods ensures the quality of modern education.

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