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Chapter 1

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Chapter 1
How
Languages
are Learned
and Acquired
The Interactive Approach: Making Learning
Meaningful
Interactive Learning in Content-Based
Language Classes
Teachers must create language learning
opportunities that connect to the students’
communities and content areas to build
literacy and increase knowledge.
The Interactive Approach: Making Learning
Meaningful
Content-Based Language Learning
CBI for ESL serves as a bridge to mainstream
classes:
• promotes higher level thinking
• allows for meaningful discussion of
students’ cultures
• reinforces thinking through the 4 skills
CBI
ELL’s
Mainstream
Classes
The Interactive Approach: Making Learning
Meaningful
A Synthesis of Sociocultural and
Psycholinguistic Theories and Practices
Teachers can choose methods, strategies and
activities that best enhance second language
learning in their classrooms.
The Interactive Approach: Making Learning
Meaningful
Influence of Cognitive Researchers
Krashen:
• meaning over form
• comprehensible input (i+1)
• ample opportunity for meaningful
interaction
Wong-Fillmore:
• 1st and 2nd language acquisition: Language
Acquisition Device (LAD) vs. general
cognitive skills
The Interactive Approach: Making Learning
Meaningful
McLaughlin: second language learning
involves social interaction
• Language is used to communicate
meaning
• Need for language-rich environment
• Children should experiment with
language
Vygotsky: sociocultural perspective:
• self-talk
• zone of proximal development
(scaffolding)
The Role of Interaction in Language
and Literacy Learning
Communication systems consist of
language and nonverbal cues
Language
• learned and used through
interaction
• used to construct and transmit knowledge
Nonverbal cues
• are meaningful
• visual, olfactory, gestural, kinesthetic
Interaction and Roles of L1 & L2
Meaningful Interaction
Linguistic input becomes comprehensible
through interaction
• An active learner who must use language to
communicate a purpose negotiates meaning
An interaction leads to multiple perspectives
• The same interaction may afford
learner different outcomes
depending on their orientation to,
receptivity to and interaction with
the context of the interaction.
Interaction and Roles of L1 & L2
Authentic Interactions
Instruction should:
• make tasks that require the natural use of
certain essential grammatical features in
communication
• provide time for noticing gaps in knowledge
of grammar
• provide sufficient and task appropriate
feedback which will focus
learner attention on form
Interaction and Roles of L1 & L2
Authentic Interactions
Strategic communication skills can be
developed by:
• using background knowledge (schemata)
• combining semantic and pragmatic based
strategies
• stretching what is
known to compensate
for what is not known
Interaction and Roles of L1 & L2
Authentic Interactions
Sociocultural Perspective - learner comes to
understand how language is used to:
• present various perspectives on the
world
• transform one’s reality
• voice ones’ position
• act in one’s own interests and the
interests of one’s community
Interaction and Roles
of L1 & L2
Relevant Interaction
Psycholinguistic framework
• Chamot & O’Malley –
build linguistic and learning skills through
content study
Sociocultural framework
• Critical literacy and language awareness
empowers students to effect social change
and challenge existing hierarchies
Interaction and Roles
of L1 & L2
Reflection and Action
Reflective skills allow for learner to develop
better self-awareness and control, automaticity
and ability to make changes in their linguistic
behavior
Reflection plays a major role in organizing
and converting past experiences into
knowledge and new understanding.
Interaction and Roles of L1 & L2
Feedback:
should not be limited to linguistic forms
should encourage learners to express their
thoughts as they learn to manage their
language production
FEEDBACK
Second Language Teaching
Strategies
Traditional approaches: text-book driven and
teacher-controlled with little opportunity for
interaction
Second Language Teaching
Strategies
Dialectic approaches:
• learning practices
facilitated by instruction
• include interactive,
discovery, hands-on
learning
• use cooperative learning,
thematic lessons, process
writing , performance/
portfolio assessment,
critical thinking, learning
strategies
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