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In his article, Harbord (1992) recommends that an English-language strategy should replace L1 strategies whenever possible. Using the L1 to save time, such as giving instructions for an activity, classroom administration, or chatting with students, is never a good reason. As mentioned in Part I, this is because using the L1 during these situations actually results in the loss of valuable opportunities for using English. It also sends a message to students that English is only a subject for learning, and they are not proficient enough to use it as a means of communication. So how can teachers demonstrate to students that they are capable of using English to communicate when it would be much easier and faster to use the mother tongue?
Bringing authentic materials into Beginner classrooms is important because this provides exposure to real-world language use. However, Beginner students can become quickly frustrated with these materials if they find the associated activities too difficult. When using authentic reading and listening material, consider the following strategies to help Beginner learners grapple with the difficulty of the language.
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