Significance of Integrating Critical Thinking in English Language Classroom of Young Learners

Marriam Bashir & Rabia Sohail

Abstract

 

The study takes a challenging task of integrating Critical Thinking in young learners classroom of English as second language which is the need of the hour. The problem is the gap between teaching skills and learning. This gap is increasing day by day especially in rural areas. There is an immense need to abridge this gap. In order to do so this research offers a new possibility of integrating Critical thinking in language classrooms of young learners. Our educational system should enable learners to face real life challenges. This study is aimed to measure the attitudes of primary school teachers and test the treatment of an activity of role play on the primary school EFL learners. The challenge to integrate critical thinking in students is of dual nature as at primary level learner are supposed to do higher order thinking in a foreign language. This though seems difficult, but keeping in mind that this is the right time to teach critical thinking to the learners the researchers were successful in finding the positive results of one aspect of activity based teaching/learning on the young learners. Since it depends on both teachers and students so for getting teachers’ responses survey method was employed using a questionnaire on likert scale. Quasi experimental method was used to conduct pre-test post-test experiment, using stratified random sampling. The treatment given was a role play.

      The results from the data gathered from the teachers showed mixed responses. The teachers’ were divided in their opinion regarding teaching thinking in English. This can hamper teaching critical thinking to EFL learners. The data gathered from the students showed that the learners were able to produce more new words in the post-test as compared to the pre-test in which some learners were not able to produce a single new word. This shows that the research was successful in finding the results of treatment in post-test. However the unexpected results in the survey conducted to collect data from teachers is an eye opener. Since the teachers play central role in teaching especially at primary level, the attitude of teachers should be positive towards the extent to teach English in order to enable learners to be able to do critical thinking in that language.

Keywords: proverbs, linguistic relativity, worldview, cultural linguistics, paremiology.

Permanent link to this article: https://jssh.aiou.edu.pk/?p=1603

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