STEAM approach to the development of English language skills in future teachers
Keywords:STEAM approach, English language skills, students, design method, teamwork method
The article contains the results of a study aimed at experimental testing of the effectiveness of the STEAM approach in the development of English language skills in future teachers. Random selection was used for sampling, the sample was subsequently divided into the experimental group (EG — 49 students) and the control group (CG — 54 students). The groups were aligned by randomization. An experimental methodology consisted in the creation of teams in EG, which worked on the development of socially significant projects, communicating in English and developing English language skills during the semester. Classes were held online in ZOOM and BigBlueButton with video recording, which allowed analysing the achievements and pay attention to mistakes for further correction. The skills were diagnosed through expert assessment before and after the experiment in EG and CG in terms of four indicators: listening, reading, speaking, writing. It was found that as a result of the experiment, the share of students with a high level of English language in the experimental group exceeded the same figure in the control group by 8% and, accordingly, with an average level — by 7%. An increase of 11% and 10% in the number of students with high and medium levels of English language skills, respectively, was diagnosed in the experimental group after the experiment. At the same time, the number of students with sufficient and low levels decreased in similar proportions: by 11% and 10%. The obtained results were confirmed by statistical calculations of Pearson’s chi-squared test. The study recorded the problems related to the need to explain students the nature, content and process of this approach, planning and coordination of the timetable and curricula related to the integration of academic subject in more detail. The conditions and opportunities for developing English language skills combined with soft skills (communication, critical thinking, creativity and collaboration) require further research.