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Academic Language. What is language? This is a question we asked the TC’s to contemplate on the first day of 270H Language, Culture and Learning. In a.

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Presentation on theme: "Academic Language. What is language? This is a question we asked the TC’s to contemplate on the first day of 270H Language, Culture and Learning. In a."— Presentation transcript:

1 Academic Language

2 What is language? This is a question we asked the TC’s to contemplate on the first day of 270H Language, Culture and Learning. In a small group of 2-3, brainstorm what you think “language” is.

3 Underlying assumptions about language… Group repsonse… TC’s responses… Webster’s definition: words, their pronunciation and the methods used to combine them and be understood by a community

4 We asked TC’s to consider these questions in terms of "language” Why? How? When/ Where/ Who?

5 These are the things we talked about this summer…. Why?Purposes How?Grammar Pronunciation When/ Where/ Who? Communicative Competence

6 This is what we are talking about now… Why?PurposesFunctions How?Grammar Pronunciation Forms When/ Where/ Who? Communicative Competence Fluency

7 So… What is Academic Language???? Given what you now know about what the TC’s know about language, In your same small group of 2-3, brainstorm what you think “ academic language” is and how it might differ from “social language.”

8 Functions, Forms & Fluency Dutro & Moran (2003) introduce the notions of functions (tasks), forms (tools) and fluency (derived from opportunities to practice).

9 Developing Academic Language: Functions, Forms & Fluency Functions (Dutro & Moran, pp ) The tasks or purposes AND uses of language. We use language to accomplish something in formal or informal settings, for social or academic purposes. Social purposes include: exchanging greetings, expressing needs, making jokes, exchanging greetings, indicating agreement or disagreement, participating in personal conversations, etc.

10 Academic Language Functions Dutro & Moran Navigating written text Asking/answering informational questions Asking/answering clarifying questions Relating information Comparing and contrasting Explaining cause and effect Justifying and persuading Drawing conclusions Summarizing Evaluating Conducting research

11 Cognitive Academic Language Learning Approach Chamot & O’Malley (1994) suggest that academic language instruction and opportunities for practice should be integrated with academic content instruction. They also introduce the notion of academic language functions, “the tasks language users must be able to perform in the different content areas” (p. 40).

12 Academic Language Functions Chamot and O’Malley Seek Information - use who, what, when, where, how Inform - recount information or retell Compare - explain graphic organizer showing contrast Order - describe timeline, continuum or cycle Classify - describe organizing principles Analyze - describe features or main idea Infer - generate hypotheses to suggest cause/outcomes Justify & Persuade - give evidence why “A” is important Solve Problems - describe problem-solving procedures Synthesize - summarize information cohesively Evaluate - identify criteria, explain priorities, etc.

13 Function: Comparing/Contrasting Dutro & Moran, p. 237 (Figure 10.6) Beg:big ocean small lake EI:An ocean is big. A lake is small. Int:An ocean is larger than a lake. EA:An ocean is enormous compared with a lake. Adv:An ocean is vast. Even the largest lake is small by comparison.

14 Forms Grammatical features and word usage. The tools necessary for discourse, for reading and writing, for using complex language and for engaging in cognitive processes.

15 Structures/Forms Structures SyntaxSemanticsMorphologyPhonology

16 Language Universals- Structures the sound system, called phonology the rules of word formation, called morphology the system of meanings, called semantics and the rules of sentence formation, called syntax.”

17 Forms include: Dutro & Moran, p. 237 Parts of speech Verb tenses Subject/verb agreement Use of pronouns Conjunctions Sentence structure & syntax Brick and mortar words/phrases

18 Brick and Mortar Dutro & Moran, p. 239 “Brick” words are the vocabulary specific to the content and the concepts being taught. They include such words as: government, democracy, line, tone, mitosis, anaphase, metaphor, theme. subjunctive, variable, algorithm, etc.

19 Brick and Mortar Dutro & Moran, p. 239 “Mortar” words and phrases are the basic and general utility vocabulary required for constructing sentences. They are words that determine relationships between and among words. They are words that hold our language together and are essential to comprehension. (Dutro & Moran, p. 239)

20 Mortar Words & Phrases - Dutro & Moran, pages Connecting words: because, then, but, sometimes, before, therefore, however and whereas Prepositions and prepositional phrases: on, in, under, behind, next to, in front of, between, among and in the background Basic regular and irregular verbs: leave, live, eat, use, saw, and went Pronouns: she, he, his, their, it, each other, and themselves Academic vocabulary: notice, think, analyze, plan, compare, proof, and characteristics

21 Brick and Mortar Compare/Contrast Marine mammalsOcean fish Born alive Lungs Warm blooded Produce milk Born from eggs Gills Cold blooded Do not produce milk Excellent Swimmers Vertebrates Live in groups

22 Mortar Words Compare/Contrast Sentence Frame: ________ have __________, whereas________ have _____________. Marine mammals have lungs, whereas ocean fish have gills. Providing the mortar words will enable students to use language to compare and contrast.

23 Fluency (Dutro & Moran, p. 242) The facility with which a speaker, reader and writer uses language. Developed through focused and deliberate engagement with a range of uses of language (both oral and written), and many opportunities to practice the newly learned forms in different contexts.

24 Ways of Being Fluent Styles/ Register VariationPurposeContext

25 Application Activity You are going to further explore functions and forms. With a partner, determine whether each item on the list is a language function or a grammatical form. Note this in the second column. Match each function to the grammatical form needed to express it and record this in the third column. Finally, with another pair, generate ideas for how you might address each of the function/form pairs. In other words, how might you teach this?

26 General Principles Dutro & Moran, pages Build on students’ prior knowledge Language and content knowledge Create meaningful contexts Provide comprehensible input and model forms Provide opportunities for application & practice Establish positive environment with clear goals and constructive feedback Reflect on the forms of language and the process of learning


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