Presentation: Time. And time again.
Co-hosted with the School of Education, La Trobe University
Students learn and teachers teach additional language in many different contexts, and the learning expectations and outcomes vary greatly. Language learning outcomes in primary and secondary school classrooms are influenced by the availability of materials and resources, teachers’ skill and preparation, students’ L1 abilities, family support and involvement, peer influence, etc.
In classrooms serving students at tertiary level or in adult education, outcomes are influenced by most of the same things, with students’ prior life and educational experiences, including their L1 literacy skills playing a particularly large role.
There are substantial differences in the availability of these resources in different teaching and learning contexts. However, one crucial resource is in short supply in nearly all learning contexts: time.
Different solutions have been proposed for increasing time available for learning. In many contexts, the age of beginning language learning at school has been lowered, spreading instructional time over more years. Instead, or sometimes in addition, schools have adopted intensive or immersion and other content-based approaches to add hours for learning and teaching.
In this presentation, we’ll start from the basics and talk about how much time is really needed for learning a new language and how much is available in different teaching/learning contexts. Then we will look at how to increase learning time in ways that have been shown to have the greatest long-term benefits.
Patsy M. Lightbown is Distinguished Professor Emerita (Applied Linguistics) at Concordia University in Montreal. Since the 1970s, her research has focused on the importance of time in second language learning and on the complementary roles of meaning-focused and language-focused activities. She has studied the acquisition of French, English, and Spanish in classrooms in Canada and the US. Her 2014 book Focus on Content-Based Language Teaching appears in an Oxford University Press series that she co-edits with Nina Spada, with whom she co-authored How Languages Are Learned (OUP), an award-winning introduction to second language acquisition research for teachers, now in its fourth edition.
Please note that this will be a presentation style event and light refreshments will be included.
Cost: VicTESOL Member $40 | Non-member $60