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  • Author: Włodzimierz Sobkowiak x
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Open access

Włodzimierz Sobkowiak

Abstract

The textbook appears to be one of the most fundamental elements of all formal-setting foreign language teaching and learning. Textbooks function in a foreign language classroom in many capacities (Cunningsworth 1995), one of which is the provision of text, used as a model for language practice, including practice of pronunciation. The changing methodological trends in EFL pedagogy over the decades affect EFL textbook pronunciation treatment in a variety of ways. In this paper a simple feasibility study is presented whereby a few beginners’ textbooks are compared with respect to their handling of pronunciation in the first unit of the course. Four textbooks come from about ½ century ago, and three are sampled from among those currently available. On the descriptive level, some analysis is offered of the phonetic (and especially phonolapsological) characteristics of the sampled texts, as they changed through time. On the level of application, it is claimed that, while the lexico-grammatical and pedagogical limitations on the content of the first lessons/units in EFL textbooks leave authors little space for phonetic control, a modicum of such control is feasible if attention is paid to such variables as pronunciation difficulty and L1 transfer. The Phonetic Difficulty Index (PDI), which is briefly introduced in the paper, can be used to measure and control some of these variables and give the textbook authors and users a useful teaching/learning instrument.

Open access

Barbara Wilkaniec, Beata Borowiak-Sobkowiak, Agnieszka Wilkaniec, Włodzimierz Breś and Dorota Frużyńska-Jóźwiak

Abstract

Heavily urbanised areas are not a favourable habitat for plant growth and development. On the other hand, urbanised areas can be a favourable habitat for harmful fauna. Tin our study, those trees growing along the roadside were more heavily infested by pests than trees growing in parks. Three orders of insects, mites and lugs were identified on the Norway maple. The dominant insect species was Periphyllus aceris. On small-leaved lime four insect orders (the dominant species was and Eucallipterus tiliae) and mites were found. An overall visual inspection confirmed that of maple and lime growing in city parks were in better condition than those growing by roads.