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LDE 3910 – Week 4. Vicki Nilles Metropolitan State College [email protected] Week 4. Building Community – Interest Surveys Historical Legislation for Linguistically Diverse Students Understanding L2 Acquisition- Basic Fundamentals Homework – Me Bags. Principles of Language Learning.

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lde 3910 week 4

LDE 3910 – Week 4

Vicki Nilles

Metropolitan State College

[email protected]

week 4
Week 4
  • Building Community – Interest Surveys
  • Historical Legislation for Linguistically Diverse Students
  • Understanding L2 Acquisition- Basic Fundamentals
  • Homework – Me Bags
principles of language learning
Principles of Language Learning
  • Native Language Acquisition
  • Five Language Learning Principles:
  • The child learns language by using language.
  • The focus in language learning is on meaning and function, rather than form.
  • Language learning is non-anxious, personally important, and concretely based.
  • Language is largely self-directed. Language learning is not segmented or sequenced.
  • Though rate of development is different, the conditions necessary for language are essentially the same for all.
development of first language in children
1) 12 Months

Infant Stage

2) 24 Months

Unitary Stage

3) 48 Months

4) 60 Months

Structural Awareness Stage

5) Kindergarten Level

Automatic Stage

6) Grade 1 Level

Creative Stage

7) Grade 2-6 Level

Communication Dev. Stage

1) Child vocalizes.

2) Speech is abbreviated. Child uses 2 word utterances.

3) Language has features of adult language

4) Child makes errors by over-generalizing.

5) Child can generate original language.

6) Child is able to create his/her own language.

7) Child learns difficult phonemes/complex grammar

Development of First Language in Children
contrasts in l1 l2 learning
Contrasts in L1 & L2 Learning

Development of Primary Language Development of Second Language

second language learning
Second Language Learning

Key Concepts General Implications Implications for Spec. Programs

key concepts general implications implications for programs
Key Concepts General Implications Implications for Programs
key concepts general implications implications for programs1
Key Concepts General Implications Implications for Programs
key concepts general implications implications for programs2
Key Concepts General Implications Implications for programs
optimal conditions for second language acquisition
Optimal Conditions for Second Language Acquisition
  • Low anxiety environment
  • Comprehensible input
  • Communication focus
  • Contextualized Language
  • Error Acceptance
  • Respect for language acquisition stages
  • Teacher as facilitator
myth or fact
Myth or Fact?
  • L2 student’s academic success is determined primarily by their ability to learn English.
Language Acquisition – Theory and practice
  • Content-Based Language Sensitive Instruction – Program Models
    • Instructional strategies
    • Curriculum design
    • Adaptive lesson planning
      • Read: Ovando & Collier, #3

Cummins article

Krashen article

Cary, # 3,&7

theories of l2 acquisition
Theories of L2 Acquisition
  • Sources:
    • Krashen
    • Cary#3
krashen s language acquisition hypotheses
Krashen’s Language Acquisition Hypotheses
  • 1. Language Acquisition
  • 2. Monitor
  • 3. Natural Order
  • 4. Input
  • 5. Affective Filter
2 the monitor hypothesis
2. The Monitor Hypothesis
  • The “monitor” is involved in learning, not in acquisition. It is a device for “watchdogging” one’s output, for editing and making alterations or corrections as they are consciously perceived. Only once fluency is established should an optimal amount of monitoring, or editing be employed by the learner (Krashen, 1981, as cited by Brown, 2000)
3 the natural order hypothesis
3. The Natural Order Hypothesis
  • Krashen has claimed that language rules are acquired in a predictable or natural order. The order of acquisition for L1 and L2 are similar but not identical. An amazing finding is that the natural order appears to be immune to deliberate teaching; we cannot change the natural order by explanations, drills and exercises.
4 the input hypothesis
4. The Input Hypothesis
  • This theory claims that an important condition for language acquisition is that the acquirer understand (via reading or hearing) input language that contains structure a bit beyond their current level of competence. If an acquirer is at stage or level i, the input that is understood will be at level i + 1. The language that learners are exposed to should be just far enough beyond their current competence level so that they can understand and still be challenged to make progress. They should not be overwhelmed with too challenging material (i +2) or not challenged at all (i + 0).
5 the affective filter hypothesis
Krashen believes that optimum language acquisition takes place in low anxiety environments where defensiveness is absent. If the acquirer is anxious, has low self-esteem, does not consider him or herself as a potential member of the group that speaks the language, s/he may understand the input but it will not reach the language acquisition device – as a block- Affective Filter- will keep it out.

Stress impedes any learning process!

5. The Affective Filter Hypothesis
myth or fact1
Myth or Fact?
  • Second language learners acquire English easily and quickly simply by being exposed to and surrounded by native English speakers.
  • 2. When second language learners are able to converse comfortably in English, they have developed proficiency in the language.
bics and calp

Linguistic expert Jim Cummins, has proposed a model that offers theoretical insight into the influences of L1 and L2 in a school setting.

Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills: A level of English proficiency which includes the ability to handle complex conversation ( one might call it ability to get along in the outside world) using contextual clues such as paralinguistic feedback from the other speaker(i.e. gestures and intonation) and situational cues to meaning. This level of native-like proficiency generally takes students 2 years to master. Tasks at this end of the second language acquisition continuum are not very demanding cognitively.


Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency illustrates when a student is moving to the opposite end of the second language acquisition continuum. CALP involves language which is context-reduced and highly demanding cognitively. Context reduced communication relies heavily on linguistic cues alone and involves abstract thinking. It is what we think of as traditional academic instruction at secondary and adult levels. Cummins research supports that when language majority students work academically only in L2, it takes them from 5-7 years to master commonly accepted age-grade norms in context-reduced aspects of English proficiency.

In addition, skills in context reduced language developed in the first language automatically transfer to the second language. All current linguistic research supports the theory that there is common underlying proficiency (CUP) for both languages.

(Cummins, 1981).

sung to the tune of bingo
Sung to the tune of BINGO

Well in this school we have some kids who speak another language

O that is so great, O that is so great, O that is so great

Let’s really celebrate it!

Let’s teach them well with what we know about Sheltered Instruction

O this will be fun, O this will be fun, this will be so fun,

We cannot wait to try it!

Well ole Jim Cummins has a thought and this is how it goes O,


And this is how it goes O.

With BICS kids can communicate just using basic English,

O they talk at lunch, O they talk at lunch, O they talk at lunch,

And then they switch to Spanish!

With BICS the kids don’t have to wait because they learn it quickly,

Yes in just two years, Yes in just two years, Yes in just two years,

They really sound terrific!

Now here is where it complicates because they need school language,

CALP is what we want, CALP is what we want, CALP is what we want.

But we will have to wait O.

Oh Just how long will this CALP take as we have tons of content?

This is what we know, this is what we know, this is what we know,

That it takes five to seven!

what is academic language
What is Academic Language?
  • There are different theories regarding the acquisition of academic language and some of the most recent will be addressed here. It is important to have a clear understanding of what academic language really entails. Academic language has been defined according to two distinct hypotheses. The first proposes that academic language is a compilation of unique language functions and structures that are difficult for language minority students to master (Hamayan & Perlman, 1990). O’Malley and Valdez-Pierce (1992) hypothesize that a handful of academic language functions are characteristic of classrooms in general. Seeking information, informing, analyzing, comparing, classifying, predicting, hypothesizing, justifying, persuading, problem-solving, synthesizing and evaluating.
Spanos (1988) believes that a perspective on academic language specific to mathematics is evident. Spanos and colleagues believe that syntactic features such as comparatives (greater than/less than) logical connectors ( if…then, given that) reliance on passive voice and various uses of prepositions are particular to the language used in mathematics classes. Semantic features of mathematical language; technical vocabulary (additive inverse, coefficient) ordinary vocabulary that has different meanings in math (square, power).
The National Science Teachers Association (1991) and Chamot and O’Malley (1986) describe the functions of scientific academic language as formulating hypotheses proposing alternative solutions, describing, classifying, using time and special relations, inferring, interpreting data, predicting, generalizing, and communicating findings. Science utilizes certain non-technical terms that have unique meanings in a scientific context ( table, energy) and that scientific discourse is characterized by a particular sequence of steps and heavy reliance on the use of passive voice and long noun phrases. (Lemke, 1990).
Dr. Robin Scarcella, University of California, draws upon research of classroom discourse that claims that academic English includes, “multiple, dynamic, inter-related competencies”. This framework rejects strictly formal views of academic English that do not examine the personal, social, and cultural factors that affect linguistic choices. More specifically, it states the importance of having a level of understanding that a perfect, error-free production of academic English or a single interpretation of linguistic features and texts is not realistic.
Dr. Scarcella defines Academic English as, “ A variety or register of English used in professional books and characterized by the specific linguistic features associated with academic disciplines”. Academic English tasks may include: reading abstracts; capturing key ideas from lectures; writing critiques, summaries, annotated bibliographies, reports, case studies, and expository essays. It also includes a variety of genre. It also includes many sub-registers related to specific content areas such science, math and economics (John 1977, as cited by Scarcella, 2003).
Academic English becomes useful in institutes of higher education and is ranked highly in the United States as it is used by the educated and those in positions of power in academic and business settings. Academic English is continually evolving in educational contexts. Language shifts to meet changing literary tasks and purposes and therefore, academic English is not acquired once and for all but is a continuum upon which learners continue to travel. Each discipline continues to develop its own literacy and therefore requires continual language development within the developing discipline ( Johns, 1997; Scheppnell & Colombie, 2002).
Scarcella believes that academic English should be taught due to the fact that there are regular features of academic English that are well defined and teachable. Literacy must also be defined and broadly stated it “suggests the involvement of mechanics necessary in decoding, higher order thinking – conceptualizing, inferring, inventing, and testing, and oral communication skills” (August & Hakuta, 1997; Wong-Fillmore & Snow, 2000).

Linguistic Dimensions of Academic English as Proposed by Dr. Scarcella

Phonological Component: All learners must know the English sounds and the ways in which these sounds are combined. In speech, knowledge of pronunciation of consonants and vowels, and consonant clusters, as well as stress intonation patterns are addressed.

Lexical Component:

In order to communicate daily in cognitively demanding environments, students must have a knowledge of vocabulary. Words characteristic of academic English include words used across disciplines, technical words that are used in specific academic fields, and non-technical academic words that are used across academic fields.

Grammatical Component:

Academic English entails all of the knowledge of grammar and everyday life at a minimum such as: accurate use of frequently occurring morphological and syntactic features as well as the functions of these features; plural endings added to nouns, the ability to subordinate, use of definite and indefinite articles and demonstrative adjectives, knowledge of verb system-infinitive complement, gerund compliment, That-clause complements. Academic English also requires the grammatical components of everyday life as well as knowledge of structures such as parallel clauses, conditional, and complex clauses; passive structures; ergative structures; conditionals; noun, reference, verb, and modality systems.

Sociolinguistic Component:

Enables students to understand the extent to which sentences are produced and understood appropriately (Swain & Lapkin, 1990). Academic English regarding a sociolinguistic component involves an increased number of language functions including: apologizing; complaining; requesting; signaling cause & effect; hypothesizing; generalizing; comparing; contrasting; explaining; describing; defining; justifying; giving examples; sequencing; and evaluating. Sociolinguistic competence also includes the ability to write cohesively and demonstrating skills of writing in the areas of expository essays, argumentative papers, research papers, abstracts and dissertations (Johns, 1997).

homework me bags
Homework - Me Bags
  • Bring a favorite bag from home and be sure to put the following items in the bag to share with others:
    • Baby picture of you
    • A picture of your favorite people
    • A picture of you doing something that you love
    • A song that gives you chills (in a good way)
    • Your favorite household item
    • A favorite smell
    • A favorite childhood movie
    • A favorite childhood book