We believe that:
A) There's a distinction between
ACQUISITION (subconscious, right hemisphere processing) and LEARNING
(conscious, left hemisphere processing) and we try to combine both in our approach.
B) In order to achieve this, participants
need a lot of exposure to the language in the form of reading and listening
(Krashen's Input Hypothesis, 1982)
C) From this input, there's a black
box (Language Acquisition Device, LAD, Chomsky in V. Cook, 1988), which processes the input from reading and listening sources,
deriving/inferring language rules subconsciously, which are then tested and modified according to listener’s feedback
or incorporated naturally and automatized. This LAD enables students to produce language spontaneously and naturally, without
having to build sentences in their heads first or having to translate from Spanish. (Krashen's Monitor Hypothesis, 1982).
D) In order to activate subconscious input, we need a conscious
activation phase, which takes place during the
lessons, where cognitive, meaningful task chains are given to students and where strategies from CLT (Communicative Language
Teaching), TBL (Task-based Learning), CBT (Content-based Teaching) and NLP (Neuro-Linguistic Programming) are used. These
strategies and techniques used by the teacher in class will facilitate the transfer from passive, right hemisphere knowledge
and competence (acquisition) to active, left hemisphere processing and production (learning).
E) Lesson Cycle: In
the listening and reading phases of the lesson we are working on A, B and C. And in the language focus/practice on D.
To optimize learning we have also included systematic transfer and recycling stages/activities based on principles of short-term
and long-term memory storage and retrieval.
- Doing reading and listening tasks outside class will optimize and accelerate the learning process enormously.
This will only take you a few minutes a day and could be done while driving to work, preparing coffee or “mate”,
shaving, cooking, etc. By doing this you will be focusing on what we explained in entries A, B and C above.
- Attending lessons systematically and punctually will enable you to complete the acquisition process and close
the learning cycle. Thus, consolidating and automatizing knowledge faster and more efficiently. Note that we are mainly working
on strategies, skills and techniques which cannot be read, studied or compensated for on your own, outside the lesson.
- Feeling relaxed, comfortable and enjoying your time in class will help you lower the level of stress and anxiety
(Affective filter) and increase dramatically your level of intake and performance. Keeping focused and avoiding interruptions
will help the completion and consolidation of cognitive and neural processes in the cycle without much effort on your part
and without having to study hard or do much extra practice.
- Working on the four skills reading, listening, speaking and writing helps information and processes to be fixed
through different input channels and therefore accelerates learning (NLP: Neuro-Linguistic programming). Depending on the
group’s or your personal needs/ some of these skills will be more prioritized than others which will only be used as