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Scripted and unscripted communication in the EFL classroom

TEFL III Seminar Presentation

Fabian Hoehn

on 2 June 2013

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Transcript of Scripted and unscripted communication in the EFL classroom

TEFL III Seminar: Orchestrating Interaction in the EFL Classroom
Prof. Dr. Kurtz
Tuesdays 12-2pm Scripted and unscripted communication
in the EFL classroom I 1984: Gert Solmecke 2013: Jürgen Kurtz Communicative cocoon, spun by teachers
IRF discourse
[teacher] Initiation
[learner] Response
[teacher] Feedback
IRF as a "stock-in-market" in FL teaching
DESI (2009) indicates that IRF is often used in classroom discourse
fixed on grammatical form
asymmetrical classroom culture
pre-planned instructions TEFL III Seminar: Orchestrating Interaction in the EFL Classroom
Prof. Dr. Kurtz
Tuesdays 12-2pm Scripted and unscripted communication
in the EFL classroom I 2002: Scott Thornbury classroom interaction is:
teacher dominated
initiated by a display question
restricted opportunities:
participation in the target language
developing a sense of control and self-regulation
learner as a consumer of “grammar McNuggets” 2005: Hans-Eberhard Piepho Problems in the EFL classroom

Development of linguistic competences, subject skills, intercultural awareness and understanding
Interdisciplinary educational concepts
Communication with people from all over the world
Concept of “Normalität des Fremden”
Current topics and types of texts
Disadvantages of textbooks Different Methods of Creating Discourse Pia Ackermann
Fabian Höhn
Lisa-Marie Kring
Elvira Schmidt Table of Contents Historical Overview of the discourse problem Interactive Example Different Methods of Creating Discourse Historical Overview Role Plays help pupils to learn to speak with confidence
encourages thinking and creativity
let students develop and practice new language and behavioural skills in a relatively safe setting
role plays shouldn't be scripted out in detail
NO SKITS Example of an unscripted role play Student A

You are booking into a hotel.

Book into the hotel - you have a reservation.


You are on your own.
You want a shower.
You want breakfast in the morning.
You have an early meeting and must not be late. Student B

You are a hotel receptionist.

Welcome the guest.
Find them a room.


You can't find their reservation.
You only have a double room with bath available. 2002: Scott Thornbury widely spread: culture of positivism
principle of order and assessment
learners´ knowledge becomes countable
learner: receiving end of a production line of transmittable facts
Brock (1986): study on question types
Referential questions (e.g. ‘What did you do at the weekend?')
Display questions (e.g. ‘What is the simple past form of leave?')

ask referential questions 1984: Gert Solmecke 2005: Hans-Eberhard Piepho Scenarios

Phase 1: First drafts
Phase 2: Editing drafts and material
Phase 3: Presentation of results
S ignificant
M eaningful
A chievable
R elated
T ime-related 2005: Hans-Eberhard Piepho Didactical literature calls for new methods
Ultimate goal: communicational competence
BUT transcriptions show: initiation – response – feedback (SINCLAIR/COULTHARD)
Initiation and feedback are fixed boundaries
Initiation = “Scheinfragen”
Feedback only refers to formal correctness
Reason: role of the teacher as controller vs. communication Interactive Example Interactive Example Role Plays Improvisation Games What is Improvisation?
“Improvisation is a kind of activity done without preparation. Much of the speaking done in ESL/EFL students' classes is done with preparation - even if it's just a couple of minutes. However, in improvisation, students must create a scene, speak, act, react, and move without preparing. The decisions for what to say or do are made on the spot.” Taken from: http://esldrama.weebly.com/what-is-improvisation.html Improvisation-Theatre Why Using Improvisation Theatre in the EFL Classroom?

learner -centered activity
increase motivation
opportunity for independent and critical thinking
foster social interactions
develop decision making skills and refine presentation skills
easy to integrate Why should we work with scenarios?

Increase independency of learners
Great variety of language use and processing
Observation and evaluation of individuals and whole class 1984: Gert Solmecke L: How many records has Vivian got?...X!
S: She has got eight.
L: Fine she has got eight. … How many chairs has Vivian got?

Task: Think about ways how to initiate a (meaningful) discourse out of this sequence!
Work in teams of two! Scripted Roleplay video Interactive Example Conversation could also look like this:

L: How many records has Vivian got?...X!
S: She has got eight.
L: Eight, that’s a lot, isn’t it?
SS: Yes! No! etc.
L: How many records have you got?
S: I have got ten.
L: Oh so many. I’ve only got one.
SS: lachen
L: No, I was only joking. Who has got more records than X? Methods of Creating Discourse Sources Kurtz, Jürgen (2011). “Breaking through the communicative cocoon: Improvisation in Secondary School Foreign Language Classrooms” Structure and Improvisation in Creative Teaching. Ed. R. Keith Saywer. Cambridge: CUP.

Piepho, Hans-Eberhard (2005). “Szenarien“. Aufgabenorientierung im Fremdsprachenunterricht. Task-Based Language Learning and Teaching. Festschrift für Michael K. Legutke. Eds. Andreas Müller-Hartmann and Marita Schocker-v. Ditfurth. Tübingen: Narr. 119-124.

Scrivener, Jim (2005): Learning Teaching. The Essential Guide to English Language Teaching. Oxford: MACMILLAN.

Solmecke, Gert (1984). “Lehrer-Schüler-Interaktion im Fremdsprachenunterricht: Vorschläge zu ihrer Änderung.“ Englisch 1: 14-19.

Thornbury, Scott (2002). “Training in instructional conversation.” Language in Language Teacher Education. Eds. Hugh Trappes-Lomax and Gibson Ferguson. Amsterdam: John Benjamins. 95-106. L: But what else can you see?
S: Ich hab’ was
L: Yes, Jenny
S: Two boys are talking
L: Two boys are talking, yes okay, and? Christine
S: There are three planes
L: Yes, there are three planes. Yes. How many planes are there? Tim? Tim pay attention. Now let’s count (Lehrer zeigt auf die die Flugzeuge).
SS: One, two, three
S: Now, there are?
S: There are three plane(s)
L: Yes, there are three planes. I can’t here the ‘s’. There are three
S: Planes
L: That’s right, good.
[] How can teachers improve?

1) tape lessons
2) transcript lessons
3) “Kontextualisierbarkeitsprobe” Improvisation-Theatre Improvisation Starters

Good for beginning improvisers
Actors are given a scene depending on age and language level
“Two siblings play a board game. One accuses the other of cheating. An argument ensues.”
“Two strangers are stuck in a room that has a security door. The one is overly concerned with getting out, the other wants to become friends, and so is in no hurry”

Actors have to decide why they have a certain position beforehand Improvisation-Theatre Emotion Party

A host of a party and his guests adapt the emotional state of each new guest
Host: neutral emotion
[Ding-dong; first guest enters]
Guest 1: Anger
Host and guest one “catch” emotional state
[Ding-dong; second guest enters]

Whole class or small groups
Not watching new guests but rather let emotion travel around
Opportunity: talking about expressing negative emotions without hurting anyone in reality
Full transcript