An idiomatic journey into real virtuality and its irrefutable relationship with the TESOL Industry (TI) .
1st things, first. The TI (Tesol Industry) generated, a few years ago, as reported by Harvard, 60 billion dollars in annual revenue from China alone (ca. 2014).
To understand the magnitude of said amount, let’s calculate: What is 1/8 of 1% of $60,000,000,000.00? I’ll save U the trouble: It’s 75 million dollars; a market share that’s nothing to sneeze at. I will repeat: One Eight of 1 percent of $60 Billion = $75,000,000.00.
TI is present in the public and private sectors, and especially in the Publishing Houses (PH > ESOL books).
To take for granted that the wool can continue to be pulled over the eyes of the masses could be and has actually become quite problematic for TI due to the fact that the PH have cashed in on the adage: Abundant ignorance within the masses creates abounding projects for opportunists.
Books do not teach foreign languages.
This must sink in profoundly, collectively, ASAP, in order for TI to rectify its course in global contribution.
TI represents the current international acceptance that the English language —and its multifarious variations— is to be the LINGUA FRANCA of our Earthly World.
However, this should NOT be taken for granted. People will get tired of trying to acquire and learn a language that is foreign to them, especially after spending tons of money and un-refundable precious time, without being able to negotiate and communicate ones thoughts, needs, and demands, socially as well as professionally in the English language.
Language courses, teachers, departments, course materials, and other resources that cost money to operate an English as a Second or Foreign Language program have been omnipresent.
And they abound; abounded, actually, due to our current pandemic: We no longer can take for granted that the ESOL and TESOL language departments at public and private institutions, schools, centers, and like businesses will be able to rebound any “time” soon from the catastrophic ramifications of COVID.
It is noteworthy that prior to the pandemic of 2019-2020-2021, many language businesses had been closed or were in the process of closing shop (e.g, Embassy CES, AEE, LAL) due to their inability to switch from book-learning to real acquisition & learning, AKA, the Communicative Approach, without only paying lip-service to it.
Already too many TI Clients had been suffering from disheartening experiences with language schools and programs, promises made, unkept, and quintessentially, un-keepable.
One does NOT acquire and learn a language via academically-oriented programs and its main villain, the English writing system, as is evidenced herewith: One joins a language program and is presented with a book even at the beginning or elementary levels.
TI can NO longer take for granted that the lack of wisdom employed by TI as a whole will be able to nurture the industry as before. Fortunately, there are those of us —however small in number— who are genuinely concerned with keeping the English Language as the LINGUA FRANCA of the world, so as to encourage proper and thus respectful linguistic interchanges between all the countries and cultures of our shared World, and to make sure TI does not take for granted that this wonderful opportunity and responsibility will last forever; or for that matter, much longer.
We, globally, have to keep talking, communicating, and working together to transform international problems into challenges.
Without a common language, a Lingua Franca, this is impossible.
(It didn’t work at Babel either).
TI needs to collectively recognize the reality that the English language is a serious commodity and thus make the necessary changes, NOW, in order to facilitate the severing switch from the Grammar-Translation Method (and all its pseudo-branches) to the CAT (Communicative Approach in Teaching), and do so from a genuinely-held perspective as is advocated theoretically based on practice, for after all, when it comes to language, the proof is always in the pudding.
We got this, TI: Just gotta work together with a common foundation:
- L1 is acquired via the phonology of a language, 1st and foremost; followed by lexicology & morphology; then syntax & semantics. This is basic grammatical knowledge and natural wisdom. All is achieved without a written system.
- Written forms of languages, if and when they exist, are supplemental aspects of language and should be avoided wholeheartedly when acquiring and learning a new language (albeit 1st, 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, and 6th, as in ESL > English as a Sixth Language)
- Translation is NOT a part of language acquisition when we speak of the natural processes involved, as in L1 (1st Language).
- Creating un-natural systems, such as books especially written for all the alleged levels of linguistic development in foreign language education (as in Interchange Series) and promote them as a viable source for the purpose of becoming successfully proficient or fluent in a “foreign” language is a dis-service to the Goal of TI from a sound perspective.
- ESOL materials have been and still are generally and overwhelmingly responsible for this erroneous view when it comes to acquiring and learning a new language.
- Prior to reading and writing, as is dictated by Nature & Horse Sense (NHS), we must acquire and learn 1st via the auditory and phonological processes.
- The processes involved in learning a language need to be filled with dynamic, memorable, and useful input from the providers, i.e., TI. It’s irrefutably posited as the AFFECTIVE DOMAIN, which is controlled by the Affective Filter. Everyone involved in TI needs to fully understand this.
*Please note: For a Zoom conversation to discuss and receive more elaboration, please contact Peter Maximilian HM via www.tesol-edu.com.