Best practices : a critique of American education and research into language learning
The following paper is an exploration of the research into discovery and meaning in the school setting. The foreign language classroom provides simply one example among other subjects, but the issue outlined in the following writings are remarkably transferable between all content areas in school: today’s students struggle because there is no connection of content to students’ own lives. Foreign language is an apt example of this problem due to the historically difficult nature of language learning in the US. This pair of papers deal with two seemingly different sides of the educational spectrum. One is a critique of the scholastic environment and academic system in place, written in both English and French. The second is a research review of second language acquisition and foreign language instruction, and a presentation of what I hope to bring to my own classroom as a teacher. John Dewey, Peter Gray, Stephen Krashen and others have spoken out for the past century about the need to improve education. I hope to continue their efforts in this paper, for the 21st century.