Teach English in TAowei Zhen - Yongzhou Shi

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It was author and motivational speaker Hilary "Zig Zig" Ziglar that wrote "Repetition is the mother of learning, the father of action, which makes it the architect of accomplishment.” Drilling is defined as being a teaching technique or method used when teaching a new language by way of extensive repetition by students, also aided through the uses of audio, oral or even visual channels or props. As with other teaching methods, repetitive drilling has both its advantages and disadvantages and has been deemed as both effective and ineffective over the years. Drilling allows for frequent oral practice of the foreign language being taught with major focus on accuracy. This is where students are encouraged to get familiar with and learn words and phrases of the new language. It in turn aides with the intonation patterns and overall pronunciation and usage of said language. This method assist with memorizing that which have been taught, as repetition does influence memory in a major way. Drilling can be used to keep the class interested and focused and somewhat entertained with the usage and incorporation of creative drills. Additionally, this method also allows for on the spot corrections, where during drills and repetitive activities, the teacher can evaluate or assess and provide feedback where necessary. On the other hand, this method can be boring if overdone and can result in uninterested and disruptive or quiet students. The lack of variations can negatively impact the learning patterns of the student and this technique can be seen as monotonous and lacking creativity. This technique may not work for all lessons and not all students have the same level of learning and or intelligence. It may encourage repetition and participation without full understanding of the lesson or what is being taught. As most techniques has their own drawbacks there are a few factors that can be taken into consideration to determine or rather ensure the effectiveness of the drilling technique or any other technique. It is imperative that the teachers stay mindful of the students’ level and group, both mentally and otherwise. For example younger students are said to be more receptive of the drilling techniques as opposed to the older ones. Also, considering the size of the classroom to ensure proper classroom management, during the implementation of such techniques. Drilling is most effective when used through methodologies and techniques. Teachers can chose to modernize the drilling technique by incorporating more creative activities that facilitates repetitions. Namely, songs, rhymes and chants accompanied by gestures or hand movements and a familiar tune can prove to very effective for the younger learners. Drills can be in the form of games, which requires repetition. These can be in the form of pictures or flashcards as a way of introducing vocabulary and phrases to the class. Interaction with peers can be an effective drilling method where students are placed in small groups, eliciting repetitive dialogue. In conclusion, this technique used appropriately and creatively can be proven effective in the classroom allowing for student participation and interest, therefore enhancing their communicative competence and a good grasp of the language being taught.