The meaning of task-based English language learning

Task-based English language learning is a technique that centres around the very purpose of language: communication.

In a task-based lesson, students develop their skills by engaging with authentic and meaningful situations in English. The teacher does not pre-decide the language that will be studied, but plans a central task for students to complete. The language studied is then decided by what happens during the task.

As well as being naturally interesting and motivating, this approach has several other advantages:

- Students combine and activate all their language resources to complete a task, rather than isolating and practising one skill at a time.

- Authentic situations mean students have a varied exposure to the language, including a rich variety of phrases, patterns and language forms.

- Students spend much of their classroom time actively engaging rather than passively listening to the teacher.

When the motivation to communicate is truly inspired through task-based learning, many academics argue that language is acquired more authentically and effectively. This is especially true of children, who tend towards a powerful imagination and a naturally strong ability to absorb and use language as a tool to communicate.

UK-based St Edmund’s College is a school that firmly believes in the task-based approach. Its immersive Summer School for young international students provides structured opportunities to practise and develop language skills – and its excellent English Through Other Subjects programme enables students to learn English by engaging with a wide range of subjects from scuba diving to Shakespeare!

If you would like your child to learn English effectively through fun activities and fascinating subjects, take a look at St Edmund’s College here.