The ESL Classroom: Teaching, Critical Practice, and Community Development


167 pages
Contains Bibliography, Index
ISBN 0-8020-4334-8
DDC 428'.0071




Reviewed by Lori A. Dunn

Lori A. Dunn is a ESL teacher, instructional designer, and freelance
writer in New Westminster, B.C.


The ESL Classroom is intended to encourage teachers to use more critical
perspectives in their Adult ESL classrooms. The author advocates moving
the subject matter away from the comfort zone of easily digestible
topics to encompass more challenging social issues. Teaching politics,
workplace issues, and community policing are among the topics addressed.

Morgan believes that the average teacher in the ESL field lacks both
the time and the incentive to create challenging lesson plans on topics
that move away from the presentation of grammar in “neutral”
language and settings. He criticizes current pedagogical methods,
paradigms, and theories for being too focused on nonthreatening content.
Morgan’s overall critique of ESL teaching fails to take into account
the fact that teachers all over the country are bringing into the
classroom material that both reflects the sociopolitical reality of the
students and challenges them on a variety of levels. That said, The ESL
Classroom does provide some practical ideas that will be of particular
benefit to the novice teacher.


Morgan, Brian D., “The ESL Classroom: Teaching, Critical Practice, and Community Development,” Canadian Book Review Annual Online, accessed July 18, 2024,