Thursday, September 15, 2011

Heated debates

Now the new term has started and I'm back teaching again (huzzah, I think) I'll try to update the blog with relevant material for AQA Language A and B specs a bit more frequently.

The first thing I'd like to set up is a Debate of the Month, which I hope will help A2 students with Language Intervention coursework and the Language Discourses part of the ENGA3 paper. The plan is to highlight a particular topic each month and look at different arguments around the issue, flagging up various style models for written pieces and offering suggestions for different angles on each debate.

I'm hoping that any keen followers of the blog (and I know there are some out there...mother, can you hear me?) will also chip in and join the debate by adding comments and links. We can all dream, I suppose.

The first topic will be gender differences in conversation and I'll kick it off next week with a quick survey of the different positions and some of the recent debates about how men and women are supposedly hard-wired to use different conversational styles and why this is a controversial (and rather dubious) position.

If anyone would like to suggest links to articles, case studies or just offer a view, I'd be interested to hear.


Fran said...

I read the blog as often as I can. You always post useful stuff.

Dan said...

Cheers Fran :-)

Anonymous said...

I agree with Fran. Sir, you've even inspired me to start my own blog (2 years after I've finished my Eng Lang A Level) keep it up please, I'm loving it. If you could have a look and tell me what I can improve on my own blog that would be great. I know how busy you can get at times but this would be great.

Josh Renee

Dan said...

Hi Josh, good to hear from you, especially as you have now joined the blogging massive.

I like the argument you put forward in the latest post about slang and code-switching, as it's something that has to be addressed. If young people really can't code-switch because they haven't got a grasp of Standard English then it's going to be a big problem employment and education-wise, but is it that bad?

There were loads of people in our English Language class (all those years ago) and in college generally who - if you'd heard the outside lessons - would have come across as ghetto yoots but who could switch back into standard language in class or in their jobs. Then again...what happened to the people who didn't make it to sixth form?