(Haiku Science Academy) Insisting upon the highest standards to qualify English teachers, within the Developing English as an Additional Language (DEAL) system of Haiku Science Academy (HSA), has yielded remarkably encouraging data.
I am so incentivized because my counterparts were extant prior to the commencement of any research beyond subjective experience.
As of this publication, I have discovered for myself at least two previously unknown correlations with established institutions. These congruencies provide validation for my rationale, because my logic parallels these pre-existing standards at the highest level.
IELTS and ICAL TEFL
The 1st correlate comes from an earlier stage in development entitled “Novel Approaches for Developing English as an Additional Language”
I am very specific in requiring …documentation in the form of lesson plans, audio, and/or video recordings (AV), recorded demonstrations of student’s English speaking competence (results).
Mining the resource, I looked into their TEFL certification courses, and selected the practically more rigorous 150 hour option after looking at the 120 hour course.
Under the heading “What does the course consist of“, I read
5 modules + 5 written assignments
a Teachers’ Diary (ongoing activity)
videos of at least 3 of your English lessons
Whereas ICAL TEFL requires 5 written assignments, and 3 videos, HSA DEAL requires 9 of each¹. To be clear, the quantity of material is in no way a substitute for the high quality that is expected and required to be demonstrated.
The 9 written assignments, and videos are matched with the 9-step frame I have synthesized, and corresponds with the 2nd high-level correlation I noted during my research which happens to employ a 9-band scale.
The ICAL TEFL site is where I first settled on pulling data about learning levels from. They provided several resources, one of which is the The Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (CEFR).
The CEFR suggests 6 levels; A1, A2, B1,B2, C1, C2, to which I added 3 levels – A, B, & C to correspond with the 3 parts I added to the 6 original parts suggested in New Concept English².
Up to this point, the HSA DEAL 9-step frame is in the following form:
A- Pre-Elementary | A1- Elementary | A2- Upper Elementary
B- Pre-intermediate | B1- Intermediate | B2- Upper Intermediate
C- Pre-advanced | C1- Advanced | C2- Upper Advanced (Fluent)
At the conclusion of Nine Learning Levels for… D.E.A.L.., I stated that “The following releases will fill in the descriptions for A, B, and C for the “Pre” levels in each stage pending further research.”.
It is highly encouraging to have found an exact fit for my developing program on the International English Language Testing System website under > Publications > Guide for institutions³.
The links are provided here for you to examine the document in more detail. For comparison, I will proceed to demonstrate how neatly the “IELTS 9-band scale³” maps with the HSA DEAL protocol.
New Concept English + CEFR + IELTS + CELTA…
- A- Pre-Elementary: Essentially has no ability to use the language beyond possibly a few isolated words.
- A1- Elementary: No real communication is possible except for the most basic information using isolated words or short formulae in familiar situations and to meet immediate needs. Has great difficulty understanding spoken and written English.
- A2- Upper Elementary: Conveys and understands only general meaning in very familiar situations. Frequent breakdowns in communication occur.
- B- Pre-intermediate: Basic competence is limited to familiar situations. Has frequent problems in understanding and expression. Is not able to use complex language.
- B1- Intermediate: Has partial command of the language, coping with overall meaning in most situations, though is likely to make many mistakes. Should be able to handle basic communication in own field.
- B2- Upper Intermediate: Has generally effective command of the language despite some inaccuracies, inappropriacies and misunderstandings. Can use and understand fairly complex language, particularly in familiar situations.
- C- Pre-advanced: Has operational command of the language, though with occasional inaccuracies, inappropriacies and misunderstandings in some situations. Generally handles complex language well and understands detailed reasoning.
- C1- Advanced: Has fully operational command of the language with only occasional unsystematic inaccuracies and inappropriacies. Misunderstandings may occur in unfamiliar situations. Handles complex detailed argumentation well.
- C2- Upper Advanced (Fluent): Has fully operational command of the language: appropriate, accurate and fluent with complete understanding.
With these criteria established, what remains will require scrupulous efforts. However, a few things are already clear.
We must now establish what set of knowledge is offered to “A” learners in order to get them to “A1“. Then, what is acceptable to move from A1 and so on, through to C2 every step of the way.
Selection of age-appropriate material, i.e. young learners or adults is a point of focus.
- How many books in each level?
- How many units in each book?
- How many lessons in each unit?
So far I am considering 33 lessons in each book. One set of books will have 4 units with 6 lessons each. Another set of books will have 8 units with 3 lessons each. Both organization set types will then include a final review lesson.
Specifying content for each step within the framework is the current priority, as it will serve as an amenable guideline for all productivity that follows.
Construction of the various syllabi, complete with grammar and vocabulary tables is forthcoming.
¹ 2008, 9 Dimensions of KappaGuerra, Hakeem Alexander
² 2017, New Edition of New Concept English, L.G. Alexander
³ 2015, IELTS-Guide-for-institutions-USA