SECOND LANGUAGE LEARNING IN THE CLASSROOM

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Gülhanım BALCIOĞLU
07271020
SECOND LANGUAGE LEARNING IN THE CLASSROOM
SIX PROPOSALS FOR CLASSROOM TEACHING
There are some theories about the learning a second language in the classroom and
some methods and materials have been developed to apply these theories in the classroom.
First of all, the only way to promote language learning in the classrooms requires a
knowledge of the relationship between teaching and learning. At this point, six theoretical
proposals for second and foreign language teaching are presented to illustrate which one holds
the greatest promise for improving the language learning in the classroom. These proposals
are:
1- Get it right from the beginning
2- Just listen…and read
3- Let’s talk
4- Two for one
5- Teach what is teachable
6- Get it right in the end
1. Get it right from the beginning
Get it right from the beginning proposal gives emphasizes the importance of accuracy
in second language learning. So, the structure-based or form-based approaches are used and
this proposal takes its roots from the behaviorist view.
Grammar translation and audio-lingual approaches as the most common traditional
ones to second language teaching are based on this proposal.
Grammar translation approach:
This approach can be characterized by the use of explicit grammar rules, vocabulary
lists with translation equivalents in L1. The aim is to read literature rather than to develop
fluency in spoken language. It usually ignores the communicative aspect of language.
Audio-lingual approach is based on the behaviorist view and contrastive analysis. The
emphasis is on the oral language accompanied by reinforcement of correct response because
students don’t be allowed to speak freely. It is thought that this would lead them to make
errors. So, it is important to prevent bad habits to occur.
Research findings
Research findings show that the grammar translation approach is useful in terms of
intensive study of grammar vocabulary and understanding of cultural texts. In the some way
audio-lingual approach can be useful for special training programmes. However, these two
approaches are too limited to be used in ordinary school programmes because the se cannot
meet the needs of students who have different levels of motivation and aptitude to the
classroom. So, supporters of communicative language teaching criticize the traditional
approaches. It sees the errors as a natural process. Furthermore, it emphasizes the importance
of fluency rather than accuracy. That is; supporters of communicative language teaching don’t
approve the ‘get it right from the beginning’ proposals. They support that students need to
develop communicative abilities right from the beginning. CLT is also criticized in terms of
giving learners too much ‘freedom’. It is likely to lead to early fossilization of errors.
However, there is little research which shows that form-based instruction in the early
stage of L2 learning will lead to higher levels of linguistic performance and know ledge than
meaning-based instruction in the early stages.
Study 12 – Audio-lingual pattern drill
This study was carried by Patsy Lightbown in the late 1970s. The research included
descriptive studies of the inter language development of second language learners in audiolingual programmes.
In this study, the learners’ acquisition of certain English grammatical morphemes was
compared in the natural learning environment and in the isolated pattern practice drills. The
results showed that practice of particular patterns focusing on accuracy and form isn’t useful
for using the forms correctly outside the classroom drill setting. Further more, the accuracy of
a specific pattern goes on until the new pattern is thought. Shortly, this study showed that
repetition and drill of decontextualized sentences didn’t develop the learners’ comprehension,
fluency and communicative abilities outside the classroom.
Study 13- Grammar plus communicative practice
It is one of the studies of Sandra Savignon on the linguistic and communicative skills
of 18 college students enrolled in French language courses at on American University. In the
research, there are three different audio-lingual groups; group one receives audio-lingual
instruction and communicative tasks. Group two receives audio-lingual instruction and culture
through films, music and art. Group three receives audio-lingual instruction with controlled
grammar and pronunciation drills. At the end of the research, it is clear that on the linguistic
competence measures, there is no significant difference between groups. On the
communicative competence measures, group one; communicative group- has significantly
higher scores than the other two groups. These show that L2 programmes focusing only on
accuracy and form don’t develop learners’ communication abilities in L2.
My opinion on the ‘Get it right from the beginning’
When I look at ‘get it right from the beginning proposal, I can clearly see that this
proposal focuses on the accuracy and form in the second language. So, the meaning and the
fluency in the language aren’t important in this proposal. However, when I am a teacher, I
will take the communicative aspects of language into consideration. Learners’ communicative
abilities or usage of language effectively in communication will be important for me. So; this
proposal can’t be guide for me to teach the language. It is really unsatisfactory because
language teaching doesn’t mean only teaching form. Additionally, it shouldn’t be forgotten
that accuracy and extensive focus on form leads learners to feel inhibited and reluctant to use
the language communicatively. Although I support meaning based instruction or CLT in
second language teaching I don’t completely ignore the ‘get it right from the beginning
proposal. I will use the communicative language teaching in my lessons but this doesn’t mean
that I never turn to this proposal. I think some critical topics or points in language teaching
needs to use ‘get it right from the beginning’ proposal. For example; some mistakes in
pronunciation, teaching some problematic words, or mistakes based on the L1 should be
corrected benefitting from this proposal to avoid fossilization. Shortly, in my opinion, this
proposal can’t be implemented completely from the beginning to the end of the lesson. I can
benefit from it time to time. We should make the balance correctly.
2- Just Listen…and read
This proposal emphasizes the importance of comprehensible input through listening
and/or reading. ‘Just listen…and read’ proposal is particularly associated with Krashen’s
Input hypothesis. In fact, this proposal is a debatable one for second language teaching. The
reason is that it proposes that learners don’t need to drill and practice the language and also
they don’t need to speak at all in their learning process. According to this proposal if the
learners hear and understand the forget language, it is enough.
Example 3
This study is the implementational side of this theory in the classroom. There is on
English class at a primary school in a French-speaking community in New Bruns wick,
Canada. In this class students (aged 8-10) receive different kinds of books with their
audiocassette. So, students enter the classroom, select the material they won’t and insert the
audiocassette of the materials. Then, they stars to hear and read English materials. Meanwhile,
the teacher doesn’t interact with the students she/he only check what they are doing.
Research findings
Researches about ‘just listen and read’ are based on the studies of comprehensionbased teaching and extensive reading.
Study 14- Comprehension-based instruction for children
It is the investigation of Patsy Lightbown and her colleagues. Students’ learning in the
comprehension based programme and in the regular program which is mainly audio-lingual
approach are compared. The result shows that the learners in the comprehension-based
programme know as much English as learners in the regular program in terms of not only
their comprehension skills but also their speaking skills. The some study is carried out again
when the children are in grade 8. This time the results show that students in the
comprehension-only programme aren’t doing not only audio-lingual instruction but also
speaking and writing components, teacher feedback and classroom interaction.
Study 15- Reading for words
Study 16- Total physical response
TPR developed by James Asher is one of the variations of the ‘Just listen…and read’
proposal. In TPR, learners simply listen and show their comprehension by their actions.
Asher’s research shows that learners can develop comprehension in the language without
using oral practice. This approach has some limitations but it gives beginners a good start. It
is stated that learners will be less nervous because this approach doesn’t lead them to speak
instead it present inputs and learners receive and comprehend the input firstly.
Additionally there are some other research that is based on the ‘just listen…and read’
proposal. These include ‘input flood’, ‘enhanced input’, and ‘processing instruction’ studies.
Study 17- Input flood
This is the study of Martha Prahey and Lydia White. It is implemented in intensive
second language classes in Quebec on young French-speaking learners. The aim of the study
is to show whether there is a relation between the high-frequency exposure to a particular
form in the instructional input and a better knowledge and use of that form by the students.
During the research, students read a series of texts including a specific form. While they are
reading, there is no teaching of this form and any error correction.
The results of this study show that although learners can add something new to their
inter language by the help of the exposure to many instances of correct models in the based on
their L1. Shortly; ‘input flood’ approach isn’t enough to support the learners with information
about what is not possible or not grammatical.
Study 18- Enhanced input
Enhanced input refers to a variety of things that might draw learners’ attention to
features in the second language. So, this increases the students’ attention to the specific
features in language and they learn them by conscious learning. There is a study of Joanna
White on enhanced input. In this study, French-speaking learners are given the reading
passages designed to draw their attention to a particular form-the possessive determiners;
his/her-. These forms are embedded in the text by using typographical enhancement such as in
bold type, underlined, italicized or written in capital letters. At the end of the research, the
performance of learners who read the typographically enhanced passages and the learners
who read the passages without enhancement are compared. Results show that there is little
difference between them. At this point, it can be said that the enhancement may not be
explicit enough to draw the learners’ attention to that form.
Study 19- Processing Instruction
Processing instruction is another approach to comprehension-based learning. In this
approach, learners not only comprehend a sentence by depending only on context, prior
knowledge or other clues, but also focus on the language itself. On this approach, there is a
research of VanPatten. In this study, learners receiving processing instruction and the ones
receiving more traditional approach are compared. The first group receives explicit
information and then comprehension-based processing instruction through listening and
reading activities and paying attention to how the target forms are used to convey meaning.
According to the results, it is clear that learners who receive the comprehension-based
processing instruction have higher levels of performance on both the comprehension tasks and
the production tasks than the other group.
My Opinion on ‘Just listen…and read’ proposal
In this proposal, generally it is seen that two skills-reading and listening- are the most
important ones. Providing comprehensible input to learners creates opportunities to make
considerable progress in the language. I think, the reason is that language acquisition is
facilitated by meaningful language. It can be seen from the research on just listen…and read
proposal that active listening, TPR and reading for meaning are important components. All
the approaches to comprehension-based learning have clear advantages as it is seen in the
studies. However; I think, this proposal may have some limitation when it is implemented in
the classroom. I mean that; if the teacher always aims to focus on meaning, second language
learners may not realize or discover what is wrong or ungrammatical in their own inter
language. TPR may again create some limitation in the classroom. In TPR learners have a
chance to receive comprehensible input focusing on listening accompanied by action. I think I
can use it in beginner classrooms effectively. However it may not be so effective for the
advanced learners. Shortly, I can generally say that comprehension-based programs related
with the ‘just listen…and read’ proposal are beneficial in terms of the development of basic
comprehension and communicative performance or skills in the early stages of L2 learning.
However, these approaches may not be sufficient for advanced level learners’ abilities in L2
and focusing on meaning too much make it difficult for learners to discover and eliminate
patterns. Also, there may be outcome or production problems because of not focusing on
speaking. There should be balance and teacher should organize the levels or the critical points
he/she wants to focus on carefully.
3- Let’s Talk
Let’s talk proposal focuses on the importance of both comprehensible input and
conversational interaction between teacher and other students. According to this proposal, if
there is an interactional situation, then learners feel it necessary to negotiate for meaning;
therefore, they can express their intentions, thoughts, opinions etc… The learners have a
chance to under stand each other. This occurs especially if the learners work together. So,
task-based instruction is based on let’s talk proposal.
Research Findings
Early and updated research about the ‘Let’s talk’ proposal make some issues clear. In
these studies the effects of interaction on second language production and development are
examined. Generally the interaction hypothesis has an important role in these research
because it is claimed that interaction facilitates learning and contributes the learners’ attitude
to language. In addition, corrective feedback is seen as on crucial feature. It helps learners
make connections between form and meaning.
Study 20- Learners talking to learners
Michael Long and Patricia Porter study on learner interaction. They compare the
speech of native and non-native speakers in conversations and analyze the differences across
proficiency levels in conversation pairs. This study shows that there are more productions
when they talk with advanced-level learners because the conversations between advanced
learners last longer than intermediate-level partners.
The number of grammatical and vocabulary errors and false stars are also compared. It
shows that there is no difference across contexts. According to these studies it can be
concluded that learners can-not always provide each other with the accurate grammatical
input, but they can share the some meaning with negotiation. This negotiation of meaning is
the main point on which the supporters of the ‘Let’s talk’ proposal aim to focus.
Study 21- Learner Language and Proficiency Level
This is a study about the role of different-level learners in a two-way communication
task on the differences in their interactive behavior. So, different types of learners are paired
together to see whether there is a difference in the interaction according to the proficiency
level. During the research, one learner from the high proficiency is in the role of sender and
one learner from the lower-proficiency is in the receiver role. Another group has the lowproficiency senders’ paired with high-proficiency receivers. As a result, it is seen that lowerlevel receivers are in a very passive role. However, when the lower-level learners play in the
‘sender’ role, there are more negotiation of meaning and variety in the interaction. Talking
this study into consideration it can be stated that teacher should sometimes give opportunities
to lower-level learners to be in dominant roles.
Study 22- The dynamics of pair work
It is Naomi Starch study. She tries to investigate the patterns of pair interaction and
wants to define whether different types of interactions lead to differences in second language
learning. She uses four distinct patterns of interaction;
1- ‘Collaborative’ interaction
2- ‘dominant-dominant’ interaction
3- ‘dominant-passive’ interaction
4- ‘expert-novice’ interaction
As a result, the study shows that learners in the collaborative and expert-novice pairs use
their second language knowledge over time. However, learners in the dominant-dominant and
dominant-passive pairs use their L2 knowledge less. These studies can be linked with
Vygotsky’s theory of cognitive development. Learners can engage in the co-construction of
knowledge more successfully when they are working in an expert-novice relationship.
Collaboration and sharing the knowledge mutually in pair works can affect the success in the
second language.
Study 23- Interaction and Second Language Development
Alison Mackey makes a study on adult learners of ESL. Learners engage in different
communicative tasks. The research is carried out on three groups;
Group 1: learners interact with native speakers, who modified their language.
Group 2: learners only observe the interactions between the learners and native speakers in
Group 1.
Group 3: learners and native speakers participate in the communicative tasks as Group 1 but
their input is pre-modified.
The result of the research shows that learner in Group 1 who engage in conversational
interactions produce more advanced question forms than the two other experimental groups.
Study 24: Learner-learner interaction in a that classroom
McDonough makes a research on this subject. She investigates the use of pair and
small group activities in English as a foreign language classes in Thailand. They engage in
interactional activities about environmental problems using the conditional clauses in their
country. Audio record is used during the activities to see the extent to which students used
interactional features such as negative feedback and modified output. Result show that
learners who use more negative feedback and modified output significantly improve in the
accuracy of their conditional clauses. On the other hand, those who use less of these features
do not. The useful ness of pair work and small group activities is explored and it is found that
students do not see pair and group activities as useful for learning English.
My opinion on ‘Let’s talk’ proposal
In this proposal, there is an intensive focus on interaction hypothesis and task based
instruction. While teaching and making the learning effective, comprehensible input and
conversational interactions with teachers and other students are very important and necessary.
I think this proposal can provide a free classroom environment in which the students can
negotiate with each other meaningfully and express their thoughts, beliefs and feelings. Let’s
talk proposal and the research bout it can be regarded as good sources to define how to
organize group and pair work more effectively in the classroom. I also want to use this
proposal in my classroom because I believe that this proposal can be developed and used
effectively in communicative language teaching classrooms.
4. Two for one
This proposal refers to the content-based instruction on the idea here is to acquire a
second or foreign language as the student study subject matter in that language. This proposal
is implemented in the settings including bilingual education, immersion programmes and the
‘content and language-integrated learning’ programmes in Europe. The main aim of this
approach is that students can get ‘two for one’, learning the subject matter content and the
language at the same time.
Research findings
The assumption-students will develop both their academic skills and second language
ability-has been investigated.
Study 25: French immersion programmes in Canada
Most immersion programmes are offered in primary and secondary schools and the
studies sow that French immersion has a great success. In addition, French immersion
students develop fluency, high levels of listening comprehension, and confidence in using
their second language. Also, their successes in academic subjects are better then their peers
whose education has been in English. However, there are also some problems in French
immersion programmes in terms of some aspects of French grammar. The reasons are that
comprehensible input is not enough and there is too much teacher centered learning.
Furthermore, there is a problem in terms of students’ lack of progress on certain language
features because of their rarity in content-based instruction.
Study 26: Late immersion under stress in Hong Kong
On this subject, Keith Johson raises concerns about the ability of the educational
system to meet the demands for late English immersion programmes. He notes that students
lack the English proficiency needed to follow the secondary level curriculum successfully.
Furthermore, teachers’ difficulties of delivering the content because of limitations in their
own English proficiency are observed. Teachers try to use a variety of strategies to overcome
the difficulties. Although these strategies help students understand the content, they may not
help them learn to use the syntactic and discourse structures in the second language to
establish form-meaning relationships.
Study 27: Inuit children in content-based programmes
Nina Spada and Patsy Lightbown observe the teaching and learning of school subject
and language with Inuit children. The general problem which is observed is that really all
students have some difficulty coping with subject matter instruction in their second language
for example, in a case study of one French secondary level class; the results show that
students do not have the French language skills they need to cope with the demands of typical
secondary level instruction. The teachers also have to work very hard to help students
understand the subject.
My opinion on ‘Two for one’ proposal
This proposal can give an opportunity to learn both the subject matter and the
language. However, I don’t think that it is se easy. This is a problematic proposal to language
teaching in terms of some aspects. The subject matter instruction isn’t enough for the students
to improve their language skills. It should be supported by instructions that focus on language
form including pragmatic features of the language. The balance may not be well arranged in
content-based instruction; as a result, the language teaching and learning may be underestimated. Moreover, this approach generally focuses on the teacher-centered learning.
Shortly, I don’t see this proposal as an effective way to learn second language.
5. Teach what is teachable
The purpose in this proposal is to choose appropriate language features to teach
according to the learners’ second language developmental stages. Manfred Pienemann and his
associates have tried to explain why it often seems that some things can be taught successfully
whereas other things seem to remain unacquired. The research has shown that some linguistic
structures develop along particular developmental stages. These structures are called
‘developmental features’. On the other hand, according to researchers supporting this proposal
also claim that some language features can be taught at any time such as vocabulary items.
These kinds of structures are called ‘variational features’. Learning these variational features
depends on motivation, intelligence, language aptitude, the quality of instruction cultures and
etc.
Research Findings
The research findings can be useful for teachers to inform them about which language
features are developmental and which ones are variational. Additionally, learners can produce
more advanced forms on tests or in very restricted pedagogical exercises. However, this
doesn’t mean that instruction can change the natural developmental course.
Study 28: Ready to learn
Manfred Pienemann investigates whether instruction permits learners to skip a stage in
the natural sequence of development. Pienemann works on two groups at stage 2 by basing on
this research question. The first group receiving instruction stage 3 rules moves easily into
this stage from 2. However, the second group receiving instruction on stage 4 rules either
continues to use stage 2 rules or moves only into stage 3. This study clearly supports that
learners cannot be taught what they are not developmentally ready to learn.
Study 29: readies, unreadies and recast
The research question is whether adult ESL learners who are at different stages in their
acquisition of questions can advance in their immediate production of these forms if they
receive implicit negative feedback in conversational interaction. The results show that the
readies in the interaction plus recast make the learners improve more than the readies in the
interaction without recasts. Unreadies who are exposed to recast do not show more rapid
improvement than those who are not.
Study 30: Developmental stage and first language influence
The acquisition of question in relation to learners’ developmental readiness is
investigated by Nina Spada and Patsy Lightbow. Some learners are exposed to more advanced
question forms. Learners who are considered to be developmentally ready and the learners
who are not yet developmentally ready are focused on. Learners’ performances on oral posttest measure indicate no advantage for developmentally ready learners. In fact, there is little
progress for each group, but on a task that needs learners to judge the grammaticality of
written questions. There is evidence that all students have some knowledge of more advanced
question forms. These results indicate that developmental readiness may move learners into
more advanced stages. However, their performance may still be affected by other factors.
First language influence is regarded to be responsible for learners’ inability to generalize their
knowledge of questions.
My opinion on ‘Teach what is teachable’ proposal
This proposal suggests that learners can learn something if they are ready for them. So,
when students are developmentally ready, giving instructional or interactional input can be
useful. First of all, I think the teachers should have the knowledge of this fact; that is, they
should be aware of the developmental stages of the learners. This proposal is closely related
with ‘the natural order hypothesis’ of Krashen. When I look at the research, I can say that
readiness may not be the only predictor of success. The quality and the quantity of the input
and instruction can be effective factors. ‘Teach what is teachable’ proposal can be seen as a
guide to plan and organize the lesson according to the students’ level and stages.
6- Get it right in the end
‘Get it right in the end’ proposal advocates the importance of form- focused
instruction and corrective feedback within communicative second language programs because
it is said that this can improve learners’ use of particular grammatical features. This proposal
regards the comprehension-based, content-based, task-based etc… as the instructions focusing
on meaning too much. The proponents of this proposal hypothesize that in addition to
meaning learners will do better if they also focus on some form-focus instruction. Proponents
of this proposal also agree with advocators of the ‘Teach what is teachable’ proposal.
However, ‘Get it right in the end’ proposal differs from ‘Teach what is teachable’ proposal
because it states that some aspects of language must be taught and may need to be taught quite
explicitly. Explicit instruction is particularly needed. So, learners can notice the target features
in the input and interaction. This may prevent them making errors.
Research Findings
The studies are both descriptive and experimental
Study 31: Form-focused experiments in ESL
The investigation is about the effects f form-focused instruction and corrective
feedback on the developing English of French speaking students participating in intensive
ESL classes in Quebec. Descriptive studies indicate that teachers rarely focus on language
form; there aren’t structural studies and language features are learned communicatively. There
is a focus on meaning in activities. According to the results of these descriptive studies,
learners develop listening comprehension, fluency, and communicative confidence in English.
On the other hand, they have problems in linguistic accuracy and complexity.
In experimental studies, the examination is about the effects of form-focused
instruction and feedback on two linguistic features; adverb placement and question formation.
According to some research, form-focused instructions are not always long-lasting.
This can be explained in terms of the frequency of use of the particular structure in regular
classroom input. Additionally, the way of giving instruction may affect language features in
different ways.
Study 32: Focusing on the conditional in French immersion
There is a study by Elaine Day and Stan Shapson. It is about the effects of instruction
on the ability of French immersion students to use the conditional mood of verbs in sentences.
Students are divided into two groups; experimental one and control group. Experimental
group receives several hours of focused instruction on the conditional. Control group
continues their usual classroom routines. Additionally, experimental group are supported with
special teaching materials such as group work, written or oral exercises, self-evaluation
activities etc. results show that learners in the experimental group are better than those in the
control group.
Study 33: Focusing on sociolinguistic forms in French immersion
The study is carried out by Roy Lyster on the effects of form-focused instruction on
the knowledge and use of sociolinguistic style variations. Learners in the experimental group
are given explicit instruction, guided practice activities with role plays and feedbacks from
teachers and peers. The other two comparison classes receive their regular instruction without
any focused instruction or guided practice in using sociolinguistically appropriate form. The
study shows that the experimental classes are better than comparison classes in terms of
written and oral production tasks and the multiple choice test.
Study 34: Focusing on gender in French immersion
It is a study carried out by Birgit Harley on the effects of instruction with very young
children in French immersion programmes. Learners are given focused instruction on a
grammatical feature which is problem for French immersion students. It is grammatical
gender. There is a focus on gender distinctions to take children’ attention. Some learners
receive instruction and these are much better at recognizing and producing accurate gender
distinctions for familiar nouns than those who don’t receive instruction. However, learners
don’t generalize their learning to new nouns.
Study 35: Focusing on verb form in content- based science classrooms
It is Catherine Douhty’s and Elizabeth Varela’s study on a ESL group who receive
second language instruction in content-based teaching. Two groups are compared. One group
with a variety of first language backgrounds receives corrective feedback; both implicitly and
explicitly. The other group doing the same science doesn’t receive corrective feedback on the
verb forms. So, the students who receive the corrective feedback make more progress in using
the forms.
Study 36: Recast and prompts in French immersion classrooms
Lyster explores the effects of form-focused instruction and feedback type on second
language learning for students in grade 5 French immersion classrooms. Students are divided
into three experimental groups and one comparison group. The experimental groups receive
explicit FFI. Then, they participate in instructional activities. Two of the experimental groups
also receive corrective feedback in either recast pr prompts. As a result, Lyster finds that
prompts can enhance control over already internalized forms. All three FFI groups are more
accurate than the comparison group. Furthermore, the FFI + prompts group do better than the
FFI+ recasts on the written measures.
Study 37: Focus on form through collaborative dialogue
Merrill Swain and Sharon Lapkin observe the language development of two grade 7
French immersion students as they write a story collaboratively. In the study, there is a focus
on finding out what students notice about differences between their original version and the
reformulated one. Another point they are interested in is whether they make revision their
original stories based on their collaborative talk about the reformulated version. These show
that multiple opportunities for learners to engage in collaborative talk on the language features
lead them to a greater understanding of their correct use.
Study 38: Focus on form in task-based instruction
Virginia Samuda investigates the importance of the teacher’s role in task-based
instruction and explores ways of guiding adult ESL learners’ attentions to form- meaning
relationship. First learners work in groups to speculate on the identity of an unknown person.
Then they come together as a whole group to tell each other what they have decided. In the
final stage of the task, they prepare and present a poster. Meanwhile, the teacher responds to
the content and not the form of their work. The first stage of the task and the final stage are
compared and some improvements are seen.
My opinion on the ‘Get is right in the end’ proposal
I support the idea that in language teaching there should be focus on both language
form and meaning. So, ‘Get it right in the end’ proposal can be implemented in the classroom
successfully. According to this proposal, if the learners are exposed to the language in terms
of all the aspects of second language, then they can acquire or be adequate in all the features
of language. Motivation and corrective feedback shouldn’t be underestimated. This proposal
is really appropriate for communicative language teaching. It gives learners more
opportunities to use the language. While benefitting from ‘Get it right in the end’ proposal,
teachers have a wide range of responsibilities. Furthermore, we can see some features of other
proposals to second language learning in this proposal.
THE IMPLICATIONS OF CLASSROOM RESEARCH FOR TEACHING
Many classroom researches have been carried out and different proposals are suggested for
second language learning. These research show that there should be focus on neither only
meaning nor on the form. Communicative and content-based instructions receive the most
support from classroom research.
In language teaching, grammar translation and audiolingual instructions are undobtly the most
widely used methods; but the researches indicate that ‘Get it right from the beginning’ doesn’t
correspond to the way the majority of successful second language learners. Their advantages
are limited and they can be used special situations.
On the other hand, there are also some programmes that give little or no importance to formfocused instruction such as ‘Just listen…. and read’, ‘Two for one’ proposals. Similarly, in
‘Let’s talk’ proposal learners have a chance to engage in conversational instructions which
lead to increased fluency. However, the learners may make slow progress on acquiring more
accurate language because of inadequate focus on form.
It can be concluded from all the research about the proposals that the critical point is to find
the balance between meaning-based and form-based activities. This will also be different
according to the characteristics of the learners including learners’ age, metalinguistic
sophistication, prior knowledge, experiences, motivation, goals, needs etc.
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