Volume VI - 2001

by Dr. Clyde Coreil

     With this issue, the word "Teaching" has been added to the already-longish title of this Journal. Mainly, this is due to a wish to be more precise in communicating our interests, which include both the acquisition and the teaching of language, and their points of intersection with the imagination. Does this include first-language acquisition? Definitely: if the particular article makes substantial reference to the imagination. Does it include psychological aspects of young children communicating through play while their lexicon develops? You bet: play involves the imagination. Hence the article this year on that topic by Lennon and Barbato. In keeping this focus through six annual volumes of our publication, we have become one of the world's foremost sources of information on the methodology and theory related to language study and the imagination. As such, it is highly advisable that elementary, secondary and college teachers--as well as professors in graduate language education courses--have this material on hand for reference and for more active use in their classes. If we really believe this unabashed claim--and we
do--then it is incumbent on us to do something to make the contents of older volumes easily available. Accordingly, during the 2000-2001 academic year, we will put the text of all articles that are at least two years old on the internet free of charge. No fees or identification of any kind will be required. Although this material is copyrighted, we will permit the printing and copying of it for personal or class use. We do not, however, grant permission to anyone to publish or sell this material electronically or in a bound volume. For research purposes, we would appreciate notification via fax, regular mail or e-mail of the article(s) you are using, the number of copies you are making, and any comments on this service or on the article itself. Such notification is not required.

     If you are not familiar with The Journal of the Imagination in Language Learning and Teaching you might like to know our central hypothesis: "Attempts to learn a language are significantly enhanced by the presence of an activated imagination." Accordingly, we focus on the theory and practical applications of this principle at all levels-kindergarten through college. Our articles span a very wide range of topics including rock music, art, dance, storytelling, Broadway musicals, puppets, fiction, drama, fairy-tales, pantomime, opera, poetry, fantasy, impersonation, reader's theatre, therapeutic play, folktales, the inner voice, and theoretical reflections on topics like the language ego and multiple intelligences. The number of articles on such topics in Volume One through the present Volume Six exceeds 100.

     We have published authors living in Cuba, China, Ecuador, France, Canada, Argentina, Singapore, Thailand, England, Spain, Ukraine, The Czech Republic, Japan, Israel, Puerto Rico, Hong Kong, Venezuela, Russia, and of course, the USA. Our writers have included such first-rate talents as James J. Asher, Carolyn Graham, Earl Stevick, Richard Tucker, Mary Ann Christison, Alan Maley, Gertrude Moskowitz, Rebecca M. Valette, Jean Zukowski-Faust, Henry Widdowson, Diane Larsen-Freeman, Elana Shohamy, Kieran Egan, and David Nunan. Our interests are not limited to ESL but extend to all aspects of the acquisition and teaching of any first or subsequent language.

International Organization for Imagination in Language Acquisition

     We are very much interested in participating in a global network of publications, conferences, situations and even conversations that are related to the idea that the imagination is an extremely powerful resource in language acquisition--a resource that comes built into the human psyche and psychology, that is free of cost, and that yearns to be used. It would seem that everyone and his brother would realize this and incorporate it into strategies of teaching and learning. Such is not the case. Some of the biggest enemies of imaginative methodology seems to be sheer reticence, fear of ridiculed by one's students, and the wish for approval from one's supervisors who must in turn be approved by boards and presidents whose memory of foreign languages consists of memorized grammar and fill in the blanks.

     This is lamentable and, unfortunately, nearly universal. As a counter-move, I suggest that advocates of creativity and imagination in theory as well as in the classroom come together to form a very loose association that might be called something like "The International Organization for the Imagination in Language Acquisition." Membership is free. There will be no meetings or officers. The only requirement is that the member consider the possible importance of the imagination in language acquisition. We at this Journal will support you in any way possible-from publishing reports of upcoming or past conferences or events of a smaller nature, to writing quite formal letters, for example, to your supervisor or principal. Persons who wish to declare their interest will be published in the next issue of this Journal--Volume Seven. Welcome to the fold!

     We would also be delighted to have you attend our 12th Annual Conference on the Role of the Imagination in Language Learning at our campus on Friday, April 27, 2001. There will be approximately 400 educators attending a keynote address and some 20, seventy-minute workshops in three time periods, ending at 3 p.m. Early enough to return to your hotel and take a nap before hitting Broadway, which is across the river from our University. A continental breakfast is included at our Conference, the fee for which is a grand total of $15. If it sounds too good to be true, then make your reservations as early as possible, and thank Dean Ansley LaMar of our University's College of Arts and Sciences for quietly supporting it year after year. He does deserve at least a thank-you note for what he has done for all of us.

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