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Posted by : Clamp School Tuesday, 3 July 2012

What is interaction

Collaborative exchange of thought, feeling, or ideas between two or more people, resulting in a reciprocal effect on each other.
Theories of communicative competence emphasize the importance of interaction as human beings use language in various context to ‘negotiate’ meaning,  or simply stated, to get an idea out of one person’s head and into the head of another  person and vice versa

INTERACTIVE LANGUAGE TEACHING
¨  Through interaction, students can increase their language store as they listen to or read authentic linguistic material, or even output of their fellow students in discussion, skits, joint problem-solving tasks, or dialog journals. In interaction, students can use all they possess of the language—all they have learned or casually absorved—in real-life exchanges. ... Even at an elementary stage, they learn in this way to exploit the elasticity of language.  (Wilga Revers, 1987:4-5) 

Interactive Principles
¨  Automaticity
¨  Intrinsic motivation
¨  Strategic Investment
¨  Risk-Taking
¨  The language-culture connection
¨  Interlanguage
¨  Communicative competence
¨  Automaticity

Truc human interaction is best accomplished when focal attention is on meanings and message  and not on grammar and other linguistic forms. Learners are thus freed from keeping language in a controlled mode and can more easily proceed to automatic modes of processing.

¨  Intrinsic motivation
As students become engaged with each other in speech acts of fulfillment and self-actualization, their deepest  drives are satisfied. And as they more fully appreciate their own competence to use language, they can develop a system of self-reward.

¨  Strategic Investment
Interaction requires the use of strategic language competence both to make  certain decisions on how to say or write or interpret language, and to make repairs when comunication pathways are blocked. The spontaneity of interactive discourse requires judicious use of numerous strategies for production and comprehension.

¨  Risk-Taking
Interaction requires the risk of failing to produce intended meaning, of failing to interpret intended meaning (on the part of someone else), of being laughed at, of being shunned or rejected. The reward, of course, are great and worth the risk.

¨  The language-culture connection
The cultural loading of interactive speech as well as writing requires that interlocuters be throughly versed in the cultural nunaces of langauge

¨  Interlanguage
The complexity of interaction entails a long developmental process of acquisition. Numerous errors of production and comperehension will be a part of this development. And the role of teacher feedback is crucial to the developmental process.

¨  Communicative competence
All of the elements of communicative competence (grammatical, discourse, sociolinguistic, pragmatic, and strategic) are involved in human interaction. All aspects must work together for succesfull communication to take place.

¨  The language-culture connection
The cultural loading of interactive speech as well as writing requires that interlocuters be throughly versed in the cultural nunaces of langauge

¨  Interlanguage
The complexity of interaction entails a long developmental process of acquisition. Numerous errors of production and comperehension will be a part of this development. And the role of teacher feedback is crucial to the developmental process.

¨  Communicative competence
All of the elements of communicative competence (grammatical, discourse, sociolinguistic, pragmatic, and strategic) are involved in human interaction. All aspects must work together for succesfull communication to take place.

Role of The Interactive Teacher
¨  The teacher as Controller
¨  The Teacher as Director
¨  The Teacher as Manager
¨  The Teacher as Facilitator
¨  The Teacher as Resourcer

Interactive language Teaching
¨  Sustaining Interaction through Group work

Advantages
¨  What is group work?
¨  It is a generic term covering a multiplicity of techniques in which two or more students are assigned a task that involves collaboration and self-initiated language. 

Advantages of group work for English language Classroom
¨  Group work generated interactive language
¨  Group work offers an embracing affective climate
¨  Group work promotes learner responsiblity and autonomy
¨  Group workn is a step toward individualizing instruction

Typical Group Tasks
¨  Games
¨  Role-play and simulation
¨  Drama
¨  Projects
¨  Interview
¨  Braistorming
¨  Information gap
¨  Jigsaw
¨  Problem solving and decision making
¨  Opinion Exchange 

Game
¨  A game could be any activity that formalizes a technique into units that can be scored in some way. Guessing games are common language classrom activities. 

Role-play and simulation
¨  Role-play minimally involves (a) giving a role to one or more members of a group and (b) assigning an objective or purpose that participants must accomplish. In pairs, for example, student A is an employer; students B is a prosprective employee; the objectives is for A to interview B. In groups,  similar dual roles could  be assumed with assignment to others in the group to watch for certain grammatical or discourse elements as the roles are acted out.  Or a group role play might involve a discussion of a political issue, with each person assignmed to represent a particular political point of view.
¨  Simulation usually onvolve a more complex structure and often larger group (of 6 to 20) where the entire group is working through an imaginary situation as a social unit, the object of which is to solve some specific problem. A common genre of simulation game specifies that all members of the group are shipwrecked on a “desert islan”.  Each person has been assigned an occupation (doctor, carpenter, garbage collector, etc.) and perhaps some other compromising characteristics (a physical disability, an ex-convict, a prostitute, etc.) only a specified subset of the group can survive on the remaining food supply, so the group must decide who will live and who will die. 

Drama
¨  Drama is a more formalized form of role-paly or simulation, with a pre-planned story line and script. Sometimes small group may prepare  their own short dramatizaation of some events, writing the script and rehearsing the scene as a group. This may be more commonly referred to as a “skit”. Longer, more involved dramatic performances have been shown to have positive effects on language laerning, but they are time consuming and rarely can form part of a typical school curriculum. 

Projects
¨  For learners of all ages, but perhaps especially for younger learners who can greatly benefit from hands-on appraoches to language, certain projects can be rewarding indeed. If you were to adopt an environmental awarness theme in your class, for example, various small group could each be doing different things: group A creates an enviroentmental bulletin board for the rest of the school; group B develops fact sheets; group C makes a three-dimensional display; Group D puts out a newsletter for the rest of the school; group E develops a skit, and so on. As learners get absorbed in purposeful projects, both receptive and productive language is used meaningfully. 

Interview
¨  A popular activity for pair work, but also appropiate for group work, interviews are useful at all levels of proficiency. At the lower levels, interviews can be very structured, both in terms of the information that is sought and the grammatical difficukty and variety. The goal of an interview could at this level be limited to using requesting functions, learning vocabulary for expressing personal data, producing questions, etc. students might ask each other questions like
      -What’s your name?
-Where do you live?
      -What country (city) are you from?
      and learn to give appropaite responses. At the higher levels, interviews can probe more complex facts, opinion, ideas, and feelings 

Brainstorming
¨  It is a technique whose purpose is to initiate some sort of thinking process. It gets students “creative juices” flowing without necessarily focusing on specific problems or decisions or values. Brainstorming is often put to excellent use in preparing students to read a text, to discuss a complex issue, or to write on a topic. Brainstorming involves students in a rapid-fire, free-association listing of concepts or ideas or facts or feeling relevant to some topic or context. 

Information gap
¨  Information-gap activities include a tremendous variety of technique in which the objective is to convey or to request information. The two focal caharcteristics of information-gap tecnique are (a) their primary attebtion to information and not to langauge forms and (b) the necessity of communicative  interaction in order to reach the objective. The information that students must seek can range from very simple to complex.
¨  At the beginning level, for example, each member of a small group could be given the objective of finding out from the others their birthday, adress, favorite food, etc.. And filling in a little  chart with the information. In intermediate class you could ask the groups to colectively pool informatuion about different occupations: necessary qualifiactions, how long it takes to prepare for an occupation, how much the preparation costs, what typical job conditions are, what salary levels are, etc. In advanced classes, a small-group discussion on determining an author’s message, among many other possibilities, would be an information-gap technique. 

Problem solving and decision making
¨  Problem-solving group technique focus on the group’s solution of a specified problem. They might or might not involve jigsaw characteristics, and the problem itself might be relatively simple ( such as giving direction on a map), moderately complex (such as  working out an itibnerary from train, plane, and bus schedules), or quite complex (such as solving a mystery in a “crime story” or dealing with a political or moral dilemma). Once again, problem-solving techbiques center students’ attention on meaningful cognitive challenges and not so much on grammatical or phonological forms.

Opinion exchange
¨  An opinion is usually a belief or feeling that might not be founded on empirical data or that others could plausibly take issue with. Opinion are difficult  for students to deal with at the beginning levels of proficincy, but by the intermediate level, certain techniques can effectively include the exchange of various opinions.

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