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Students need input and output

Besides seeing students as groups of individuals needing different approaches, these teachers perceive students as those who need both input and output. This is unsurprising for Western, CLT-trained teachers. However, this commitment to output was somewhat surprising given the stereotype that traditional Chinese teaching is all input. All the teachers in this study were committed in some way to output: the students learning to speak. For P5 and P1 on the US side, this meant that speaking was 'Job #1'. 'If you teach [Chinese] as a foreign language, you must emphasize speaking. This is the most important thing a learner must establish before doing anything else' (P5: 15). For the teachers on the China side, this element was present in teachers' stated goal for language teaching: the ability to communicate 'in a natural way, in a native-like way' (P21: 65) with native speakers. Instead of an emphasis on only grammar and vocabulary, these teachers resisted the stereotypes and pursued this emphasis on output.

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