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Workshop: Helping your students acquire a more native-like fluency! José Roberto A. Igreja Robert C. Young. Helping your students acquire a more native-like fluency!. What´s fluency? How can we define someone who´s fluent in a language?
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José Roberto A. Igreja
Robert C. Young
How can we define someone who´s fluent in a language?
Fluent > Dictionary definition:
Able to speak with ease; able to speak a language effortlessly and correctlysource: Encarta on-line dictionary
When a person is fluent, they can speak a language easily, well and quickly
source: Cambridge Advanced Learner´s Dictionary
Being able to interact in a foreign language with native speakers of this language; able to communicate effectively.
Foreign language fluency: the 4 components
> the ability to easily read and understand texts written in the language;
> the ability to formulate written texts in the language;
> the ability to follow and understand speech in the language;
> the ability to produce speech in the language and be understood by its speakers.
What do native speakers of English make use of in their speech when they talk?
>>> Students need to be exposed to real language ...
> stood you up
2. You can´t understand someone because he´s speaking too fast. What do you tell this person to do?
> slow down
3. You are offered a job but you refuse to accept it. What do you do?
> turn it down
4. It´s late at night and you decide to go to bed. What do you decide to do?
> turn in
5. You manage to find the solution to a problem. What do you manage to do?
> figure it out or work it out
6. You persuade someone to do something for you. What do you do?
> talk him/her into doing something for you
7. You persuade someone not to do something. What do you do?
> talk him/her out of doing it
8. All of a sudden you decide not to do something you had agreed to do. What do you do?
> back out
9. Someone stops talking suddenly or refuses to talk about a subject. What does he or she do?
> clam up
10. You defend or support someone in an argument. What do you do?
> back him/her up
“A gota d´água ...
... que faz o balde transbordar”
“The last straw ...
... that breaks the camel´s back”
Um mar de rosas
A bed of roses
Language chunks / Collocations
> Time What words collocate with “time”?
free timeright on timerun out of timesave timespare timespend some timetake your timetell someone the timetime goes bywaste time
pay attentionpay by credit cardpay cashpay interestpay someone a complimentpay someone a visitpay the billpay the pricepay a finepay your respects
Pay through the nose
Throw in the towel
Touch base with
Tackle a problem
Dive into it
Pass the baton / Pass the torch
Down and out (boxing)
Take a rain check (baseball)
Jump the gun (athletics)
Out of my league (baseball)
By a nose (horse racing)
Hole in one (golf)
Practical strategies on how to be more fluent:
a. Watch movies, TV and You Tube and try to model speaking and intonation.
b. Study vocabulary and expressions for specificand real life situations.
c. Find movie scripts on the internet and print them for verbal practice.
d. Get on a chat room.
e. Film yourself and have a native speaking teacher evaluate you if possible.
f. Do response exercises. Write down popular questions or expressions and test yourself to respond quickly and with accurate pronunciation.
1. Be very busy
= Have one’s hands full
= All set
3. Disappoint someone
= Let someone down
4. Seriously; really
= No kidding
5. I have no idea
= I don’t have a clue; Beats me!
6. Break into pieces; collapse
= Fall apart
7. Eat some food or a small meal
= Grab a bite to eat
= Make up one’s mind
9. Appear; arrive
= Show up
10. Very tired
= Beat; Bushed
11. Very quickly or soon
= In no time
12. Absolutely not!; definitely not!
= No way!
13. At risk; in danger of being lost
= At stake
14. Full of
= Packed with
15. Provide accommodation for someone
= Put someone up
Formal X Informal Language: two sides of the same coin!
Que odor desagradável
= Puta catinga/fedô!
Essential measures should be undertaken at the earliest opportunity.
You should do whatever you have to as soon as you can.
Prior to the discovery of America, potatoes were not consumed in Europe.
Before they discovered America, Europeans didn\'t eat potatoes
The situation and the people we are talking to set the level of language formality or informality ...
Students need to be exposed to both ...
In everyday speech, informal language prevails ...
Fale Inglês como um Americano
by José Roberto A. Igreja and
Robert C. Young
Disal Editora - 2010
16. Frighten; scare
17. Do something before it should be done, before considering the situation carefully
= Rush into things
18. Go ahead and start talking
19. Nice meeting you too!
= Same here!
20. Very well dressed
= Dressed to kill
21. Pay for something
= Pick up the tab
22. Very rarely; hardly ever
= Once in a blue moon
23. Choose something; make a choice
= Take one´s pick
24. Use your influence to get something
= Pull strings
25. Enjoy something greatly
= Get a kick out of something
26. Nervous and easily upset
= On edge
27. Someone who is not drinking any alcohol anymore
= On the wagon
28. Show one´s feelings openly
= Wear one´s heart on one´s sleeve
29. Remind one of something; seem familiar
= Ring a bell
30. Postpone until a later time
= Take a rain check
The tip of the iceberg: A small part of something much larger
The first politician found guilty is just thetip of the iceberg. Many more will fall afterwards.
Kill time: spend time doing something while waiting to do something else
“We have an hour to kill before the movie starts. Let´s go get something to eat.”, Luke told his friends.
After winning the contest Cindy was given the red carpettreatment at a five star hotel for a week.
Laugh one´s head off: laugh very much and very loudly.
Jack laughed his head off when he saw Mike imitating their friend Bob.What´s the idiom behind the picture?
“What do you do for a living?”, Neil asked the girl he had been introduced to, to break the ice.What´s the idiom behind the picture?
Couch potato: someone who is not very active
and spends a lot of time watching t.v.
Many children are becoming couch potatoes from playing video games all day long.