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The ACCESS System

Examples of Pedagogical Techniques In the three quarters of a century since Ogden an Richards, skills have greatly improved in every area of human endeavor - and those regarding teaching are no exception.

Say What You See In the teaching of language, perhaps the single greatest breakthrough has been in area of "Say What You See" with phonemic captioning. It is much easier for the second language learner to see a word than to hear it. The new approach is more visual than the older oral approach of language learning.

Learn through games Learning as a process was often thought of in the past as being a drudgery. Many techniques have been discovered through the years to make it a pleasurable process and the ACCESS system through feedback and its EVERGREEN mode will seek to continuously improve upon these methodologies.

Act to Comprehend The manipulation of objects in time and space is key to the learner in understanding the function words. In this process second language learning needs to recapitulate the process that children go through to learn an initial language.

Write to Memomrize There is an eye, hand, brain path that is especially well exploited in the learning process by the use of writing and workbooks. These are also a part of the ACCESS System.

Practice Incentive Video In the long run, in order to continue to improve, the learner must be self-motivated and this is achieved through special videos that give the learner incentive to practice - simply for the pleasure of watching the videos.

A step by step description of how the ACCESS system works is as follows:

Step 1. The student memorizes the names of 35 concrete objects.

    (10) The dots on a set of dominoes from zero to 10.
    (6) Splotches of color - red, green, yellow, blue, black, white.
    (5) Parts of the body - hand, arm, foot, leg, head
    (4) Parts of the head - Eye, Ear, Nose, Mouth
    (5) Box, bucket, chain, whale, wheel
    (3) Hat, umbrella, lai
    (2) garage, corsage
These words are especially selected so that collectively they contain two examples of every sound in the ACCESS alphabet. The reason for selection of garage and corsage is because there are very few words in English that brought in the 'zh' sound from French. The reason for hat, umbrella and and particularly 'lai' is that they are words for objects that can be manipulated in particular ways. In general the other words are selected because they are closely related and easily recognized.

Step 2. Once the students have memorized the word sounds for the flash cards with the objects and their names (not that they are expected to recognize the names) the individual sounds in the 35 words are identified with the symbols for these sounds. The students once again rotely learn the 39 sounds and accompanying symbols in the ACCESS System. These are also taught by flash cards and an "ABC" song.

Step 3. The students are then taken through drills with the sounds and symbols so that they can pronounce any combination of symbols. These are nonsense words and only have to do with the ability to sound out the symbols or the sound of any word they may see. These three steps are associated with three one hour long videos and three workbooks and each video requires one day to complete.

Each of the 18 hour long videos in the course are divided into 6 ten minute lessons. Each video requires a day to complete. Each student has a 24 page workbook to accompany each video. The workbook is divided into 6 four page lessons. Each video is accompanied by a teacher's guide that gives directions for drills and games. The teaching process involves a review of the previous day's work and a preview of the next day's.

Step 4. Once the students have completed the first three steps then in the next 15 hours they are taught 600 function words of the English language, over the next 90 lessons, or roughly 6 to 7 words per ten minute lesson, or a minute per word given video openings, closings and housekeeping between lessons.

There are also extensive drills and practices regarding each of the words, going back over previous words learned and accumulating skill in their use. These are all function words and so the key is activity. The same objects are demonstrated in the videos as being placed in and out, above and below, beside and behind, and in front and so forth. This is the central part of the system and key behind the concept. The point of the language is to manipulate time and space (function) while the object (form) is of no consequence.

Step 5. Once a student has mastered the 600 function words they are then taught a list of 200 form words dealing with their own specialty, whether that is maid service, cooking, taxi driving or whatever. They will then be able to understand and give directions regarding their own specialty.

Step 6. Students who wish to expand their vocabulary may do so by reading the pictionary which groups together 6,000 pictures of objects, along with 3,000 dictionary words, that could be recognized and named by the average 12 year old in North America.

Step 7. Students who wish to continue to improve their English language capabilities may do so in a number of ways:

    a. They can listen to special closed captioned entertainment videos to improve their listening and comprehension skills.

    b. They can read, with the aid of a 50,000 word dictionary, defined in their pictionary vocabulary, any one of the ten thousand books on Project Gutenberg including the 100,000 word Webster's Dictionary.

    c. They may make the transition through BRiJ English to reading traditional English orthography. While this latter has not been the purpose and goal of the ACCESS System, still some students may find themselves so encouraged by being able to learn and communicate in English so quickly that they may wish to progress on in this latter direction.

Slide Presentation Continues here.

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