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Second Language Acquisition To Think About: Think about a baby acquiring his first language. Think about a person acquiring a second language. What similarities.

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Presentation on theme: "Second Language Acquisition To Think About: Think about a baby acquiring his first language. Think about a person acquiring a second language. What similarities."— Presentation transcript:

1 Second Language Acquisition To Think About: Think about a baby acquiring his first language. Think about a person acquiring a second language. What similarities and differences are there in the two processes?

2 First and Second Language Acquisition CharacteristicsL1 LearnerL2 Learner constructs language from prior conceptual knowledgexx is an active learner who tests and revises hypothesesxx requires interactionxx uses cognitive strategies(i.e., overgeneralization) xx understands more when input is modified (caretaker talk, foreign talk)xx develops language in predictable stagesxx makes developmental errorsxx experiences a silent periodxx

3 CharacteristicsL1 LearnerL2 Learner is usually made cognitively developedx generally has a greater knowledge of the worldx generally can learn and apply rules more easily x usually has more control over input x has an L1 as a resourcex is familiar with one or more other culturesx may have a problem with attitude/motivationx is more likely to be inhibited or anxiousx Adapted from: P. Richard-Amato. (1996). Making it happen: Interaction in the second language classroom. P.27

4 Age and Second Language Acquisition To Think About: Is it better to learn a second language when one is young or when one is older? Why?

5 Critical Period Hypothesis The Critical Period Hypothesis states that and individual must acquire a language by a critical period or it will be difficult to acquire a language. This is in terms of First Language Acquisition. The main advantage to learning a language when younger is that the individual is more likely to acquire a native-like accent.

6 Proficiency: What is it? To Think About: When a person proficient in a second language? How do you know a person is proficient?

7 Proficiency: Grammatical Competence Mastery of language code Lexicon Word formation rules Sentence formation rules Pronunciation rules Spelling Sociolinguistic Competence Mastery of appropriate language use n different contexts

8 Discourse Competence Mastery of how to combine meanings and forms to create a text in different modes Examples: telephone inquiry, argumentative essays, recipes Strategic Competence Mastery of verbal and non-verbal strategies to compensate for breakdowns in communication

9 Proficiency: How long does it take? To Think About: If you wanted to learn a second language, how long do you think it would take you to speak and understand that language? How long would it take you to read and write?

10 BICS ( Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills) 2 to 3 years Ability to converse and understand every day discussions CALP (Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency) 5 to 7 years Ability to read, write, speak, and listen at an academic level

11 Stages in Second Language Acquisition Preproduction/Comprehension Stage Characteristics Silent period Can respond non-verbally Will be able to understand more than they can produce

12 Early Speech Production Characteristics Can understand more than can produce Can produce one or two words at a time Will make lots of errors Interlanguage occurs (a mixture of vocabulary and structures from both languages

13 Speech Emergence Characteristics Will be able to understand more than they can produce Interlanguage continues to occur Longer utterances Decreases in errors

14 Intermediate Fluency Characteristics Appear orally fluent Errors are same errors native speakers make Struggle with content area reading and writing.

15 First Language Development To Think About Do you think the child’s first language is a hindrance or a help in terms of learning a second language? Why?

16 Common Underlying Proficiency/Transferability Theory Many skills and concepts are common or interdependent across languages.

17 Dual Iceberg Representation Surface Features of L1of L2 Common Underlying Proficiency

18 What Literacy Skills Transfer? Directionality Sequencing Ability to distinguish shapes and sounds Knowledge that written symbols correspond to sounds and can be decoded in order and direction

19 Activation of semantic and syntactic knowledge Knowledge of text structure Learning to use cues to predict meaning Awareness of the variety of purposes for reading and writing Confidence in oneself as a reader and writer

20 What Skills Do Not Transfer? Critical and Cultural Literacy (interpretation of text given a specific cultural world view) From: C. Roberts. (1994). Transferring literacy skills from L1 to L2: From theory to practice. In The Journal of Educational Issues of Language Minority Students, v. p

21 Threshold Hypothesis Bilingualism has been viewed as a handicap and a cause of cognitive confusion. One reason for this view is Interlanguage Another reason has to do with the Threshold Hypothesis

22 Threshold Hypothesis:  The better developed the L1, the better developed the L2 can be.  High level of proficiency in L1-high level of proficiency in L2 is possible  A low level of proficiency in L1-lower level of proficiency in L2


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