I have just received an email from Ana Laura Gonzalez Gonzalez in Mexico asking this question:

 
I am curious about what you think towards Extensive Reading.
 
It is correct to use Extensive Reading in TBL classes?
If you answer is positive, how would you link the Extensive Reading practice to the TBL?
 
This was my reply:
 
If you want to finds out more about extensive reading I suggest you take a look at
 
teachingenglish.org.uk/think/articles/extensive-reading
 
You could then search the site for more on 'extensive reading'.
 
Provided the reading is well chosen it is very much in line with the aims and principler of TBL. You need to identify reading which is at an appropriate level for your learners and which treats topics of interest or provides stories which appeal to them. If you can do this learners will be processing language for meaning and there is a definite outcome in the form of the information they have acquired or the enjoyment they have experienced.
 
Another important feature of extensive reading is that it exposes learners to a lot of varied language. This again is in common with TBL which exphasises the importance of exposure and variety of language rather than controlled input.
There are a number of techniques which rest on the same assumptions as TBT. One of them is process writing. You can find an introduction to process writing in Graham Henry article at:
 
teachingenglish.org.uk/think/articles/approaches-process-writing
 
Graham shows how:
 
Process writing is a move away from students writing to test their language towards the communication of ideas, feelings and experiences.
In other words it makes meaning a priority in the same way as TBL. He also demonstrates the cooperative nature of process writing, showing how it involves learners working together to develop ideas and put them into texts. And of course this coperation involves genuine communication. 
 
So Ana Laura's question was really useful for me. It started a train of thought which led me to process writing and made me think about how TBL relates to other techniques and approaches.
 
I'd appreciate ant help in developing these thoughts. 
 
 

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