TEACHING AND LEARNING ENGLISH LANGUAGE USING FRAMES AND MIND MAPPING TO IMPROVE READING COMPREHENSION ADDRESSED TO STUDENTS AT “SAN FRANCISCO DE ASIS” UNIVERSITY EL ALTO CITY
Acomata Calderón, Arminda Rosario
Martínez Espejo, Sara Veronica
Molina Peñarrieta, Evelyn (tutor)
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In Bolivia teaching and learning English as a second language has become as a tool and necessity for students and professional people. Moreover, learning English involves four linguistics skills that are: Listening, Speaking, Reading and Writing. Nevertheless, one of the most difficult challenges in teaching a second language is finding ways to help learners improve their reading comprehension. This is common in countries where people have another mother tongue but not English. In the case of Bolivia where the official languages are Spanish, Aymara and Qhechua, Learning English as a second language is difficult for people because its grammar structure is different from their native language. That is why this work is focused on Reading comprehension using frames and mind mapping as techniques as well as skimming and scanning strategies. Firstly, “English language is considered an important tool because through it we can get scholarships, good jobs, travel abroad; also about 400.000 books written in English are published per year”. (See appendix 1). Secondly, “talking about English skills: listening is the receptive skill in the oral mode, in the second place speaking is the productive skill in the oral mode, moreover reading is the receptive skill in the written mode, and to conclude, writing is the productive skill in the written mode” As we mention above, this work is focused on reading comprehension by different factors: A survey has shown that reading is the most important skill for academic success. (see appendix 2) “Most scientific and technical books are first published in English. Those texts contain a great deal of information” , where readers must be able to not only extract it, but also to understand the material as well. Reading is very important for studying different areas such as Medicine, Engineering, Education Science, and Psychology or simply for pleasure for instance sitting alone in our house we can travel around the entire world and communicate with those who lived in thousand years ago. Only by reading, we can get much information and pleasure. According to Williams “Reading is a form of communication where information and ideas are exchanged between writer and reader in the act of communicating”. Reading comprehension skill increases the pleasure and effectiveness of reading. Where strong reading comprehension helps in the personal and professional life. Nowadays, “at the University reading skill has become predominant because a lot of academic materials are written in English” .This implies that students without a good reading proficiency would not be able to perform at the specific level. Thus, to learn English as a second language is really notable for students’ need. Thirdly, “frames are statements of the correct sequence of the parts of speech and are used for identifying grammar structures in a text”. On the other hand, “mind mapping is a convenient graphical tool to help thinking and learning by putting complex thoughts or interconnected ideas into two dimensions and it is used for organizing information in a graphical way”. Both of them are useful techniques for improving reading comprehension. Moreover, talking about strategies, “skimming is a quickly reading in order to identify the main ideas of the text. Then, scanning is finding specific information within a text”. So, both strategies are more specific types of reading styles and they are used for finding information from non-fiction texts and as well as they are extremely useful study skills right across the curriculum. Hence, the present research tries to give English language learners the opportunity to improve their reading skill through frames (grammar structures) and mind mapping. Consequently, the main purpose of this research is to introduce to the English class, reading materials with the only purpose to develop reading comprehension skill of intermediate learners, in particular students from “San Francisco de Asis” University “El Alto” city. All the materials and activities that are presented in this research are focused on reading skill such as articles, scientific and social texts. Also, we involve students with scanning and skimming strategies in order to identify grammatical structures and extract information from the texts. Besides, reading activities are supported by frames (grammatical structures) and mind mapping after each activity where students have to recognize in a text grammatical structures and then capture key thoughts and connections between ideas in a graphical / visual format. Moreover, students (through this technique mind mapping) start with an idea, concept, or question where they capture information by connecting key concepts and thoughts to the central idea. It is worth mentioning that we propose to apply skimming /scanning strategies in order to improve reading comprehension and we believe that frames and mind mapping encourage students to read more English texts without the fear do not understand or identify some grammatical structures or get the information from the text.