Types of errors Slips – Wrong language caused by tiredness, nerves, lack of concentration. All native speakers make slips. Example – “I didn’t do nothing. I mean anything.”
Mistakes L2 speakers use incorrect grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation. They might be able to correct “wrong” language themselves If they can, the mistake is not serious
Errors Sometimes students cannot correct “wrong” language. They may not know the correct form. They may have learned an incorrect form
What do we correct? If we correct every incorrect utterance, how will the learner feel? Discouraged, grateful, confused, nervous….
Correction Rule 1 If the incorrect language results in communication breakdown, we should try to correct it.
Correction Rule 2 If a student makes a mistake with the target language in a controlled practice / accuracy task, we should correct it.
Correction Rule 3 If a student makes a mistake during a freer practice / fluency task, we may choose not to correct it or we may note down error and correct it later
Correction Steps 1. See if the student can correct their own mistake 2. See if another student can correct the mistake 3. Correct the mistake
Correction StrategiesExample mistake:“Yesterday, I visit my mother.”
Gestures / Facialexpressions Open hand, rotation wrist, palm down A wave of the finger A shake of the head A frown A backwards thumb gesture to remind student to use past form
Direct Correction Echoing – repeat what student said but stress incorrect word “Yesterday, I VISIT my mother.” Bleeping – “Yesterday, I ____ my mother.” Reformulation – “Yesterday, I visited my mother.”
Summary Mistakes are natural and are signs that learning is taking place. Encourage self and peer correction before teacher correction Use a variety of techniques Make sure students understand why the mistake was made Get students to produce correct form