Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Presentation is loading. Please wait.

Developing Grammar Consciousness-raising through Task-based Language Teaching Farida ABDERRAHIM University of Constantine, ALGERIA

Similar presentations

Presentation on theme: "Developing Grammar Consciousness-raising through Task-based Language Teaching Farida ABDERRAHIM University of Constantine, ALGERIA"— Presentation transcript:

1 Developing Grammar Consciousness-raising through Task-based Language Teaching Farida ABDERRAHIM University of Constantine, ALGERIA 1

2 Outline Place of grammar in language teaching. Rationale for Consciousness-raising (CR). Principles of Task-based Language Teaching(TBLT). GCRTs in EFL at university level. 2

3 Place of Grammar in Language Teaching Grammar has always fascinated theorists and practitioners in the field of education. On the whole, except for the Communicative Approach where language use is believed to lead to the command of the target language, agreement that the grammatical component should not be neglected, need for learning the code and practising it in a systematic manner in order to achieve linguistic proficiency. 3

4 Agreement also that grammatical errors are a natural phenomenon reflecting restructuring, replacing, readjusting, developing communicative strategies. As to FL learning, the context of our paper, it has been found to be determined by : exposure to comprehensible input, attitude, motivation, interaction, cognitive processes. So, grammar pedagogy has to take into account the sound findings of : Linguistics, Psycholinguistics, Sociolinguistics, Neurolinguistics, Cognitive Psychology. 4

5 The Consciousness-raising Approach One development of these related disciplines is CR a cognitive approach to grammatical instruction developed by Sharwood-Smith ( 1981 ). Compatible with research findings related to how learners acquire second / foreign language grammar. A learner-centered orientation, with emphasis on : learning processes and strategies where the learners rely on their intellectual capacities and use their cognitive modes to learning : the most important one being noticing leading to awareness about the use of a language structure. 5

6 Aspects of grammar are focused on, without necessarily using explicit rules or technical jargon to help learners discover the rules by themselves. CR has proved to be useful at an initial stage of acquisition, the stage of controlled processing, to trigger the declarative knowledge, paving the way gradually to the procedural knowledge when learners attend to content rather than form (Ellis 2003). 6

7 Task-based Language Teaching A curriculum is viewed as a collection of academic tasks specifying : 1. the products students are to formulate, 2. the operations required to generate the product, 3. the ressources available to the students to generate the product. ( Doyle 1979, 1983,reported by Nunan 1988) Starting from this view, other researchers, (eg. Richards, Platt and Weber 1985, Candlin 1987, Nunan 1989,Long 1989, Robinson 1995, Willis 1996) have specified the various aspects of a task, stressed the meaning - primacy interactions to solve a communicative problem comparable with real world activities with an outcome, argued that optimum conditions for communicative development lead to interlanguage development, 7

8 A task has : a goal : the general purpose of the task, an input : verbal or non-verbal information supplied by the task, conditions : the way in which information is presented, procedure : the method followed in performing the task, predicted outcomes : the product. ( Ellis 2003 ) A task with the above characteristics, can be : an information-gap activity involving a transfer of given information from one learner to another ; a reasoning-gap activity involving the discovery of new information through inference, deduction or perception of relationships or patterns; or an opinion-gap activity involving a response to a given information. (Prabhu 1987) 8

9 In this context, form (structure) has to be : Natural : the use of a structure during a task does not stand out. Useful : the use of a structure helps in completing the task. Essential : a structure has to be used in order to complete a task. (Loschly and Bley-Vroman 1993) Focus on form can be : Proactive : the choice of the form is made in advance : when we design the task, we ensure that opportunities to use problematic forms while communicating a message will arise ; or Reactive : the learners notice and are prepared to handle various learning difficulties as they arise. (Doughty and Williams 1998) However, there is a reaction to this view which stipulates that : language aspects that are not salient may go unnoticed. ( Long 1991, Schmidt 1990 ) 9

10 Two major TB models : Willis (1996) : The pre-task activities which aim at activating the schematic knowledge, what is likely to make the task authentic and providing opportunity for a focus on form and noticing. The task stage which stresses the form-meaning relationship providing opportunity for language use and the development of accuracy, fluency and complexity, contributing to the proceduralisation of language. The language focus stage with CR activities requiring learners to process input in a way which makes features more salient and aiming at getting the learners to identify and think about particular features of language form and use at their own time. 10

11 Skehan (1998) developed an information-processing approach where the tasks : cover a wide range of structures ; are selected on the basis of the utility criterion ; are selected and sequenced in such a way as to achieve a balanced development of accuracy, fluency and complexity ; offer maximum chances of focus on form through : manipulation, reflection and awareness. 11

12 Grammar Consciousness-raising Tasks It is possible to integrate the teaching of grammar with opportunities for communication, exchange of information in grammar tasks students solve interactively in order to formulate : the implicit knowledge : intuitive and procedural knowledge, and the explicit knowledge : the knowledge we learn, which when linked with opportunities for natural communication, helps to provide more rapid second language acquisition. ( Long 1988, and Ellis 1990 ) 12

13 These tasks provide opportunities to practise forms that have been first presented declaratively and to receive feedback on the mistakes under real conditions. They are information-gap activities : they promote communication about grammar, raise the learners consciousness about the grammatical characteristics of the language, require the exchange of information in order to reach an agreed solution to a problem. (Ellis 2003) Fotos and Ellis (1991) and Fotos (1994) showed that grammar tasks (with task sheet and task cards)produced significant gains in the understanding of the targeted structure. 13

14 Our Study : First Year EFL University Students Are GCRTs effective for developing grammatical accuracy and promoting grammatical explicit knowledge of English tenses ? Why tenses ? 1. Problematic area : The students are confused by : the various tenses in their simple and continuous forms, and in their perfective aspects, and by the complexity of the uses of each tense. 2. The students often ask for rules to make them become aware of the use of the tenses, and consequently use them correctly. 3. Mistakes made require, formal instruction and CR activities to make the learners achieve an accurate use of the tenses in an appropriate context of communication. 14

15 Comparison of the results of two groups One : TTFGLS (traditional grammar teaching and written practice). One : GCRTs consisting of : information-gap activities : the students complete a given input, reasoning-gap activities : the students induce the rules underlying the given sentences, and decision-making activities : the students reach a negotiated decision. The tasks are designed in conformity with the task components explained earlier. Goals : the tasks are expected to : 1. raise the students consciousness about the English tenses ; 2. help them gain grammatical explicit knowledge of this aspect ; 3. promote their grammatical accuracy; 4. provide them with opportunities to interact, communicate and negotiate meaning to improve fluency and achieve implicit knowledge ; 5. enhance their autonomy, self-confidence and motivation. 15

16 16 Input A Task sheet, Task cards and Task directions. Example : The Present Simple ( Pr.S ) A Task sheet consisting of : Form : the 4 forms of the Pr.S to be completed, Use : the 4 uses of the Pr.S have to be identified in a series of 4 sentences included in the 4 task cards. Task cards : 4 cards Each containing one form : Affirmative, Negative, Interrogative and Interro-Negative ; and one use of the Pr.S : Truth, Habit, Planned future actions, and Past related as present or historic present.

17 Task directions Objectives : Through this task, you are expected to be able to : raise your awareness, and gain an explicit knowledge about the different forms and uses of the Pr.S through a series of interaction and exchange of information. Organisation of the task : 1. Complete the task cards individually. 2. Dictate them to your subgroup who write them down on the task sheet. 3. Discuss the use of the Pr.S you think corresponds to the sentences. 4. Negotiate your choice with the other subgroups. The procedure 1. Analysis of the task card input to find the required tense form and rule governing the set of sentences to be copied in in the task sheets. 2. Interaction and negotiation of the answer provided by each one. 3. Once the right answer is agreed on, it is submitted to the whole class for a general agreement under the teachers guidance and control. 17

18 Outcomes : The students have to develop : 1. understanding of the forms and the uses of the tense, 2. the ability to choose the correct rule underlying the tense, 3. interaction, autonomy and motivation, 4. an active role in the process of learning through the exchange of information. Results The post-test results (essay writing, narration) indicate that GCRTs are: 1. more effective for developing grammatical accuracy and grammatical explicit knowledge than TTFGLs, 2. more effective for fostering interaction and comprehensible output and for enhancing students autonomy, self-confidence and motivation. This gives us grounds to advocate GCRTs as a motivating methodology to the teaching of grammar in the context of EFL. 18

19 Conclusion 1. The general goal of language learning is fluent accuracy and effective use of the target language. So, the primary concern of a teacher should be how to integrate attention to form and meaning. 2. GCRTs are in accordance with the principle that what learners can find by and for themselves is better remembered than what they are simply told. 3. They are a critical investigation of the linguistic features involving the learners in a study of the form and the use. 19

20 References Candlin, Christopher, N. (1987). Towards Task-based Language Learning. In Candlin, C.N. and D. Murphy (eds) Lancaster Practical Papers in English Language Education 7, Englewoods Cliffs,N.J. :Prentice Hall. Doughty, Catherine and Jessica Williams (1998). Focus on Form in Classroom Second Language Acquisition. Cambridge Applied Linguistics. Ellis, Rod (1990). Instructed SLA: Learning in the Classroom. Oxford:Blackwell. Ellis, Rod (2003). Task-based Language Learning and Teaching. Oxford. Fotos, Sandra (1994). Integrating Grammar Instruction and Communicative Language Use Through Grammar Consciousness-Raising Tasks. TESOL Quarterly 28 (2), Fotos, Sandra and Rod Ellis (1991). Communicating About Grammar: A Task-Based Approach. TESOL Quarterly 25 (4), Long, Michael, H. (1988). Instructed Interlanguage Development. M. Beebe (eds) Issues in Second Language Acquisition: Multiple Perspectives. NewYork: Newbury House. 20

21 Long, Michael, H. (1989). Task, Group, and Task-group Interactions. In University of Hawaii Working Papers in ESL Long, Michael, H. (1991) Focus on Form: a Design Feature in Language Teaching Methodology. K. de Bot, R. Ginsberg and C. Kranisch (eds) Foreign Language Research in Cross-cultural Perspective. Amsterdam, John Benjamin. Loschky, Lester and Robert Bley-Vroman (1993) Grammar and Task- based Methodology. In Crookes, G. and S.M. Gass (eds). Nunan, David (1988). Syllabus Design. Oxford University Press. Nunan, David (1989). Designing Tasks for the Communicative Classroom. Cambridge University Press. Prabhu, N.S. (1987). Second Language Pedagogy: a Perspective. Oxford University Press 21

22 Richards, J., J. Platt and H. Weber (1985). Longman Dictionary of Applied Linguistics. London: Longman. Robinson, Peter (1995). Review article: Attention, Memory and the Noticing Hypothesis. Language Learning 45 (2), Schmidt, Richards (1990). The Role of Consciousness in Second Language Learning. Applied Linguistics 11 (2), Sharwood-Smith, M. (1981). Consciousness-raising and the Second Language Learner. Applied linguistics 2, Skehan, Peter (1998). A Cognitive Approach to Language learning. Oxford University Press. Willis, Jane (1996). A Framework for Task-based Learning. Longman. White, Ronald V. (1988). The ELT Curriculum: Design, Innovation and Management.Oxford: Basil Blackwell. Yip, Virginia (1994). Grammatical Consciousness-raising and Learnability. In Terence Odlin (Ed.),Perspectives on Pedagogical Grammar. Cambridge: Applied Linguistics,

Download ppt "Developing Grammar Consciousness-raising through Task-based Language Teaching Farida ABDERRAHIM University of Constantine, ALGERIA"

Similar presentations

Ads by Google