An investigation into some approaches to vocabulary teaching and learning and the application of games in teaching and learning vocabulary at pre – Intermediate level at Foreign Language center – haiphong university

English plays an important role as it has become the international language and its contribution to different fields of our life such as: economy, technology, science, education, trade and tourism is obviously considerable. English language is now widely used in Vietnam. It serves as a main language for international communication and it is taught throughout of Vietnam and it has been learned by people in all walks of life not only at universities, colleges and schools but also in many part-time English classes at foreign language centers. Consequently, the teaching and learning of English has become more and more significant. However, both teaching and learning of English are still far from being satisfaction. Both teachers and learners have faced many difficulties in English teaching and learning - especially in teaching and learning of vocabulary. It is of common knowledge that vocabulary plays a significant role in second language acquisition. Wilkins, a famous British applied linguist, emphasized this with his saying "without grammar, very little can be conveyed, without vocabulary nothing can be conveyed " (1972, p.11). Pyles and Algeo (1970) also supported this idea with "when we first think about language, we think about words. It is words that we arrange together to make sentences, conversation and discourse of all kinds". In fact, vocabulary is the decisive element that links the four skills of speaking, listening, reading and writing all together. In order to communicate well in a foreign language, students should acquire an adequate number of words and should know to use them accurately. In Vietnam in general, vocabulary teaching has yet to be paid due attention to as it deserves. Vocabulary has not been a particular subject for students to learn but has been taught within lessons of reading, writing, speaking and listening. For most of teachers the common way to communicate word meaning is translation through word list and many learners use rote strategies as their major way of vocabulary learning. In the Foreign Language Center of Haiphong University (FLC - HPU) the problem of vocabulary teaching and learning is more difficult, especially for the learners at Pre-Intermediate level. The main reason is that the classes are usually big with learners of different ages and abilities. It seems difficult for the teachers to apply the suitable way to teach these learners. Another reason is the course book. The number of new words in the book Headway Pre-Intermediate is rather large and it makes the learners feel confused and difficult to remember all of them. Furthermore, the learners at FLC – HPU, like other Vietnamese learners in general, usually learn vocabulary passively through their teachers' explanation. They only write words on paper with translation into Vietnamese and try to learn them by heart. During the lessons learners find many new words in the text and then ask their teachers to explain the meaning and usage. Sometimes teachers ask them to look up words in the dictionaries. As a result, the learners feel bored in vocabulary lessons and they very soon forget the new words they have learnt. Being teachers of English of the center, we have been many times asked by our learners about the ways of vocabulary learning. They ask "teacher, can you tell me the way to learn vocabulary?", "How can I remember words quickly and for a long time?" or "I had learnt new words very quickly but forgotten soon". Facing this situation, the teachers of English of FLC-HPU want to do something to change the ways of teaching and learning of vocabulary. Therefore, I have conducted a research to find the answer to help the teachers to apply more suitable methods to teach vocabulary to their learners. I wish to help the learners successfully improve their lexical knowledge and feel more interested in vocabulary lessons. As a result, this study will investigate some ways in vocabulary teaching and learning among learners at level B (Pre-Intermediate) at FLC-HPU. I would also like to suggest a certain effective way i.e. the use of games in vocabulary lessons.

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  • Từ ngày 01/05/2022

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