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Creating an L2 communicative classroom

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Sussan Roo

on 23 January 2016

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Transcript of Creating an L2 communicative classroom

Content-based and task-based instruction
Creating an L2 communicative classroom
Communicative teacher golden rules
1. Make real communication the focus of language learning.
2. Provide opportunities for learners to experiment and try out what they know.
3. Be tolerant of learners’ errors as they indicate that the learner is building up his or her communicative competence.
4. Provide opportunities for learners to develop both accuracy and fluency.
5. Link the different skills such as speaking, reading, and listening together, since they usually occur so in the real world.
6. Let students induce or discover grammar rules.
SLA theories in action
Engaging the student right from the start
Ice-breakers.
Exercise 1. Hello Bingo
Top-down bottom-up pre-activities to arise students’ learning processes
CBI:
The focus of a lesson is on a topic or subject matter. Students use the language as a means of acquiring information, rather than as an end in itself.

TBI:
Using authentic materials and giving students specific tasks. It’s a way to bring real world experiences into the classroom by focusing on practical language skills.
Exercise 2. Bingo TV
Communicative practice
Refers to activities where practice in using language within a real communicative context is the focus, where real information is exchanged, and where the language used is not totally predictable.

Challenge: Work with a partner. How many communicative activities can you brainstorm?
The role of language chunks
Let's remember that in order to develop fluency students need to develop automaticity.
How can they achieve automaticity? Repetition, recycling and use of meaningful language chunks
Information-gap act.:
Students use their linguistic and communicative resources in order to obtain information they don't possess.
Exercise 3. Movies
Jigsaw act.:
the class is divided into groups and each group has part of the information needed to complete an activity. The class must fit the pieces together to complete the whole.
Exercise 4. Jigsaw
Information-transfer act.:
Students take information that is presented in one form, and represent it in a different form.
Exercise 5. Family tree
Task-completion act.:
puzzles, games, etc.
Exercise 6. Crazy inventions convention
Information-gathering act.: Surveys, interviews, etc.
Exercise 7. Favorites Interview
Opinion-sharing act.: Students compare values, opinions and beliefs.
Exercise 8. Points of view
Role-plays: activities in which students are assigned roles and improvise a scene or exchange based on given information or clues.
Exercise 9. Role-plays
Mechanical techniques
Meaningful techniques
Communicative techniques
3 kinds of techniques that must be always present to develop accuracy and fluency (form and function)
Meaning and form: how to focus on both
What is accuracy and fluency, and how do they relate to a communicative classroom?
Accuracy:
focuses on creating clear and articulate language, free from morphosyntactic or phonological mistakes, and appropriate to the context and situation.
Fluency:
natural language use occurring when a speaker engages in meaningful interaction and maintains comprehensible and ongoing communication despite limitations in his or her language knowledge.

Discussion questions:
1) Can a beginner student be fluent?

2) Are automaticity and fluency connected? If so, how?
Mechanical practice
Refers to a controlled practice activity which students can successfully carry out without necessarily understanding the language they are using:

Choral drills
Interactive Drills (written or oral)
Substitution Drills (written or oral)
Transformation Drills (written or oral)
Visuals to elicit information

Bored of drills? Spice 'em up!
Thinking outside the box:
Crosswords
Word search
Memory card games
Charades
Jeopardy
Taboo
Completing lyrics of a song
Challenge: How many more activities to develop accuracy can you think of?
Meaningful practice
Refers to an activity where language control is still provided but where students are required to make meaningful choices when carrying out practice.
Top-down and bottom-up information processing
Information is processed as a whole. Trying to understand the meaning of a reading or listening selection without worrying about the individual components of language.

Listening for the gist and reading for the gist are two types of top-down activities. The learner is trying to understand using cues such as intonation, tone of voice or body language without focusing on specific words and structures.
Top-down information processing
Andy brought me another present today. It was too late to save it so I buried it in the garden. I think I’m going to have to put a bell round his neck.
Example:
Processing information from the most basic blocks of language, such as words, and then proceeding to more complex structures, and finally to meaning.

Listening for exact words or phrases would be considered a bottom-up listening activity. Also, studying individual grammatical structures or sentence structures would be bottom-up.
Bottom-up information processing
Both processes should be included in a class to bring awareness of both meaning and form of the language.
Substitution drills:
I love coffee, don't you?
I love ______, don't you?

Transformation drills:
I go to the movies every Saturday
I went to the movies last Saturday
Full transcript