Education is one of the essential spheres to the social, political and economic development of any nation and consequently effective education is very crucial. Effective teaching is important because it is mainly based on helping children developments from one level to another in a more sociable interactive environment, and to assist students to be independent and autonomous learners. Effectiveness does not mean being perfect or giving brilliant performances, it is rather being able to use effective techniques, methods and ways of teaching language to encourage pupils acquire language easily, attract the learners’ attention and to get them completely engaged within the learning process, and consequently no time is available to make noise or disruptive behaviors in the classroom. For that every teacher should know what group of learners he is going to teach and what kind of special characteristics do they have.
Moreover, teachers should work out a teaching methodology that can bring out the maximum productivity for learners to grasp the contents easily and make the teaching-learning sessions meaningful. In recent years, language teachers and scholars have focused their attention in observing and developing approaches and strategies that leads to an effective learning process in acquiring English as a foreign language. In order to make learning process smooth and effective, language teachers have to design various teaching methods out of their personal teaching experience and training. There is great diversity of language teaching techniques that help learners to understand more clearly and participate in the learning process more actively. Sometimes more than one technique is combined to make an EFL classroom meaningful. According to Prashant Subhash Mothe, different types of instructional modes, approaches, vocabulary building activities and skills proved to be effective in developing children and college students' vocabulary in L2 environments.[1, 2006] Teaching vocabulary in context, combining vocabulary with reading and writing activities, and providing the students with different lexical information about the words under study enhanced children and adult students' vocabulary. The basic role of vocabulary knowledge in second or foreign language learning has been recently recognized by the theorist and researched in the field. Following this, numerous types of approaches, techniques, exercises and practice to teach and improve vocabulary. Nation properly states that teaching vocabulary should not only consist of teaching specific words but also aims at equipping learners with strategies necessary to expand their vocabulary knowledge.
It is a very useful technique to teach vocabulary to the beginners. The names of many things can be taught by showing actual objects. It gives real experience and sense to the learners. The words like pen, chalk, table, chair, football, flowers, tomato etc. can be taught in the classroom. Real objects or models of real objects are very effective and meaningful in showing meanings but in handling of real objects, a teacher must be practical and should not be superfluous. It is neither possible nor necessary to bring all the things in the classroom. Therefore, some words are to be taught by showing models. Teacher can perform some words. It can be fun and frolic. It makes the class student-centered. Teacher can act and learners try to imitate it. For example, the words like jump, smile, cry, nap, sleep, and dance can be demonstrated. Miming works well with younger students. You can mime out emotions and everyday activities to teach new words. This method can be practiced at ease. It can win the favor of the students as learners like dramatizations and can easily learn through them. This works well with young students or students studying a foreign language to help introduce them to new concepts. Select a video segment that contains a series of actions or visual detail can be appropriate way to this teaching process. Provide the learners with a list of target vocabulary words and ask them to make a sentence or little story that incorporates as many of the words as possible. This activity is best done after the learners have seen the video. As they learn how to use more vocabulary properly, you will see an improvement in their vocabulary.
Another way of teaching and learning vocabulary is “Drawing”. It is an easy and quick technique of introducing vocabulary to the learners. For students, drawing can be a fun medium to explain vocabulary. It is not necessary that teacher must be an expert in drawing pictures accurately. Teacher can also draw the draft versions in order to make an idea clear. Basic samples of these drawings will often work well. You can even have students do their own drawings, which further reinforces their understanding of the vocabulary. Comparative words and prepositions can be made clear by simple sketches. Pictures of many types and colors can be used successfully to show the meaning of words and sentence. Drawings can be used to explain the meaning of things, actions, qualities, and relations. As we have mentioned above there are different techniques and effective ways of teaching vocabulary. Next way is “Word Map” or “Mapping” which can give to children an opportunity to gain the meaning of the words with more fruitful and effective ways. In this technique students work in small groups to learn connections among words by brainstorming and organizing words according to a map that they design or a blank one that is provided by the teacher. An example might be a key-concept word in the center of the page with rays connecting related words. For example, when asked to give words they think of when they heard the word “faithfulness”, low-intermediate students generate sixteen words or phrases: cat, friend, family, trust, dishonest, unfaithfulness, believe in friendships, bonds, obey, dog, friendly, parents, love. After clustering words which they feel went together, they map the relationships between these words. Also the teaching technique “Reading words aloud” is also very beneficial. It makes young learner familiar with the word and also improves pronunciations of the learners. Sound can be an easy way to illustrate words that describe sounds, such as whistle, scratching, and tinkling. You can make the sounds yourself, or bring in tapes or CDs for students to listen to and write down the words that they hear. The situation can be made easy and interesting, if the teacher of English selects the vocabulary, grades the vocabulary and uses different techniques in the classroom.
Teachers should focus on vocabulary, as it is the most essential aspect in any language and means of communication because we cannot express our feelings without words. As one of the scientist states ‘Not being able to find the word you need to express yourself is the most frustrating experience in speaking another language’.[2, 1982].
The present article analyzed various techniques and methods of teaching new vocabulary. Teacher must make use of such techniques while teaching of vocabulary. There is no sure fire remedy or method to enhance vocabulary in a day or two. A student's vocabulary bank can be enriched on a gradual basis and one should always show keen interest and enthusiasm in finding, learning and understanding new words. Teaching vocabulary through incidental, intentional, and independent approaches requires teachers to plan a wide variety of activities and exercises. As Harmer states that in the process of teaching and learning, teachers should use appropriate media and techniques based on the students’ ability, and that instruction is vital in foreign language classrooms because it can provide comprehensible input for the learner at the right level. Understanding linguistic and psychological theory, showing consideration of learner differences, and understanding the principles of child development and the characteristics of children at different stages of development will help prepare the teacher to create curricula and activities that bring languages and children together effectively.[ 3, 2007].
Very young learners create their own learning engaging with their environment and they are active in their learning process. It is important to provide learners with strategies for inferring the meaning of unknown vocabulary from the context in which it occurs instead of getting them to memorize long lists of words or look up unknown words in a dictionary which would make the reading process slow and tedious and which would probably not contribute to the actual learning of vocabulary. To apply this theory, the teacher should encourage children to try various activities, so that pupils can achieve goals in at least some of them. Every child should have the opportunity to feel the success.
To sum up we may say all these characteristics of young learners are very important to know while working with them in the teaching process. We need to know their mental process according to create a good lesson in order to enhance their vocabulary.