The role of language practice

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Many students admit they know grammar rules but when speaking they can't help making errors. We stop making errors when language use becomes automatic, that is when we stop thinking about how to say something, but rather what to say. Although reaching this level is a long process, regular effective practice might speed it up.
In this seminar we are going to try some grammar activities and discuss what makes them effective.

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The role of language practice

  1. 1. The Role of Language Practice Olga Goncharova CELTA, DELTA, COLT, Cambridge Examiner CELTA Trainer, IHC YLT Trainer, TKT: Trainer (3 Modules, Practical, TKT: YL) © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  2. 2. Fluency vs Accuracy• Accuracy is …• Fluency is …… an ability to speak idiomatically and accurately, without undue pausing, without an intrusive accent, and in a manner appropriate to the context.Fluency is an ability to• Select utterances appropriately (knowing what to say, to whom and when)• Produce these utterances (rapidly and smoothly, without much hesitation) © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  3. 3. Types of practice• Mechanical• Contextualised• Communicative © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  4. 4. © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  5. 5. What they have in common• A specific grammatical feature is isolated for focused attention (target language)• Learners produce sentences with the target language• Learners repeat the target language• Expectancy that learners will produce the target language correctly. Therefore, practice activities are “success oriented”• Learners receive feedback on accuracy, either immediate or delayed © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  6. 6. The Habit Loop RoutineCue click Reward © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  7. 7. Criteria for Creative Automatisation genuinely communicative, i.e. task related, not just for the sake of saying smth psychologically authentic, natural formulaic (short, memorizable, multi-situational) focused (one or few functions) inherently repetitive © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  8. 8. Examples of situations where repetition is authentic• Calling an appliance store to practise the structure “something needs V-ing”• A party in a redecorated apartment to practise Ive had the walls painted• Speed dating to practise I like/ I don’t like• “Lost umbrella” to practise What does it look like?• “You look different” to practise I’ve had my hair dyed• Thanksgiving to practice Thank you for V-ing © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  9. 9. I’ve never … live be eat drink have learn work seeI’m getting/ feeling …. © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  10. 10. © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  11. 11. Examples of activities to promote creative automatisation• Jazz chants/ creating chants (I’ve never…)• When I am 64. (Will you still…?)• When I am an old woman I shall wear purple. (future forms)• Pictures on the wall (he’s going to … They might have..)• Class photo (prepositions of place)• What’s my job? (Do you have to…?)• What kind of animal am I? (Do you have..? Can you..?) © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  12. 12. Acknowledgement• Grammar teaching – Practice or Consciousness Raising? by Rod Ellis• Addressing the grammar gap in task work by J.C.Richards• An A-Z of EFL by S.Thornbury• Teaching grammar in Second Language Classroom by H.Nassaji & S.Fotos• The Power of Habit by Ch.Duhigg © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  13. 13. Thank you! © BKC-IH Moscow Teacher Training Centre 2012
  14. 14. BKC-IH Teacher Training Centre E-mail: t-training@bkc.ru Tel: (495) 2340314 www.bkc.ru

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