Steven Krashen - language education guru or opportunist and shyster? For the ESL crowd (who are not generally language learners so don't really know) he is regarded as a leading authority. Many real language learners tend to reject his theories, because they simply don't work! What do linguists here think?
When I first read about Krashen's work, I thought "Hey, this guy says the same things about language learning as I". Needless to say, I fully support most of his ideas -- for example, the emphasis on input and the concept of "n+1".
I recommend a different approach to reading -- Krashen favors extensive "free reading", whereas I think it is a good idea to read "intensively", paying attention to grammar.
When was this article written?
Much of what Krashen has said is valid. Some of his key insights are echoed by anti-moon. That Krashen has promoted bilingual education as a means to improve the economic or academic performance of Mexican-Americans is regrettable. That many graduates of the modern North American "multiculti" school environment and ethnic pressure groups jumped on the bandwagon is not surprising.
As to dictation, translation, or grammar study as a short cut to language acquisition, I just do not think so. Give me meaningful input, lots of it, to listen to and to read (the same texts) and a systematic and efficient way to learn words and phrases instead. Reading should be both "extensive" and "intensive". And then force yourself to write and have it corrected.This works for many people and keeps them motivated.
I think that, while Krashen had many good ideas on alternative ways to aquire second language, in the long run the best results come from combining different methods of learning. The tediom of learning endless grammar rules can off-put a person learning a language, but at the same time these rules DO need to be learned and it is sometimes impossible to learn these rules by merely listening to native speakers of said language.
I am not an expert, just a recently graduated Linguistics student who still has to look up stuff in her old notebooks to remember for sure. But I don't think Krashen's ideas are all bad, and I personally agree with some of his methods.