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Unit 2 Communicative Principles and Task-based Language Teaching. Background information: Students: 50 sophomores Lesson duration: 2 periods. Teaching objectives: By the end of the lesson, students should be able to:
Task-based Language Teaching
Students: 50 sophomores
Lesson duration: 2 periods
1. Language use in real life vs. traditional pedagogy
2. Fostering communication competence
3. The implementation of language skills
4. Communicative activities
5. Conclusion: How do we learn language?
Key and difficult points:
1.Principles ofcommunicative Language Teaching (C LT)
2. Main features of communicative activities
3. Task-based Language Teaching (TBLT)
1. Lecture ( Computer-aided Instruction)
Multi-media, whiteboard, pictures,
1. Understanding la. use in real life vs. traditional pedagogy
1.1 Lead-in activities
Let Ss work in groups and brainstorm any differences between the language used in real life and language learned in classrooms under traditional pedagogy, then fill in the form
Very often there is a big gap between the language used in
real life and the language learned in classrooms.
The differences are numerous and we will focus on a few major points.
Generally speaking, the differences shows in the following
One possible solution to bridge the gap between classroom La. teaching and
real–life La. use is the adoption of communicative language teaching (CLT)
The goal of CLT is to develop Ss’ communicative competence (including the knowledge itself and how to use it in communicative situations)
Hedge discusses there are five main components of communicative competence
--------is concerned with knowledge of the language itself, its form and meaning
b. Pragmatic competence
-------is concerned with the appropriate use of the language in social context
c. Discourse competence
-------refers to one’s ability to create coherent written text or conversation and ability to understand them
d. Strategic competence
------ refers to strategies one employs when there is communication breakdown due to lack of resources.
-------means one’s ability to link units of speech together with facility and without strain or inappropriate slowness or undue hesitation
3.1. Let Ss work in groups and discuss the implications of each component of communicative competence to La. teaching and learning .
3.2.. Ask the students to make a list in the space provided on Page19
3.3. Ask some students to present their results of discussions, and the teacher makes comments.
4. Communicative Language Teaching (C LT)
4.1.How does CLT come into being?
educators and linguists who had grown dissatisfied with the audiolingual
and grammar-translation methods of foreign language instruction. They felt
that students were not learning enough realistic, whole language. They did
not know how to communicate, using appropriate social language, gestures,
or expressions; in brief, they were at a loss to communicate in the culture
of the language studied. Interest in and development of communicative-
style teaching mushroomed in the 1970s; authentic language use and
classroom exchanges where students engaged in real communication with
one another became quite popular.
CLT makes use of real-life situations that necessitate
communication. The teacher sets up a situation that students are
likely to encounter in real life. Unlike the audiolingiual method of
language teaching, which relies on repetition and drills, the
communicative approach can leave students in suspense as to the
outcome of a class exercise, which will vary according to their
reactions and responses. The real-life simulations change from day
to day. Students' motivation to learn comes from their desire to
communicate in meaningful ways about meaningful topics.
5.2.1 Communicative activities
It aims at the communication of meaning. They focus on fluency. They pass
directly from guided tasks through semi-guided to free-communication tasks.
Functional communicative activities: the main purpose of the activity is
learners should use the Language they know in order to get meaning across
effectively as possible. In the process of carrying out certain tasks Ss will:
share information, e.g. pair/group tasks: following directions; picture identification;
discovering differences; discovering missing information; arranging pieces of
information in sequences, communicating patterns and pictures, etc.
use information, e.g. group tasks: pooling information, solving problems.
Social Interaction Activities: the main purpose of the activity is to give the
learners an oppotunity to use the language in an appropriate social contex, to create
variety of social situations and relationships, e.g. pair/group tasks: conversations,
simulations, improvisation and role-playing.
5.2.2 Criteria for evaluating how communicative classroom activities
Content, not form
Variety of language
No teacher intervention
No materials control
Ask Ss to discuss the three sample activities on page 25-26, and fill in the form provided
on Page24. then the teacher makes comments.
6. Task-based Language Teaching (TBLT)
6.1 What is TBLT?
Task-based Language Teaching is, in fact, a further development of Communicative
Language Teaching.It shares the same beliefs, as language should be learned as close
as possible to how it is used in real life. However, it has stressed the importance to
combine form-focused teaching with communication-focused teaching.
The following (Pages.27 to 28) present some definitions given by different scholars. Let Ss work
in pairs and identify some main features of a task
Four components of a task
Clark, Scarino and Brownell believe that a task has four components:
6.2.3. Differences between exercises , exercise-tasks and tasks
Purposeful & contextualised communication
Organize Ss to read the differences between the two models of teaching, and
let them have a general idea of the two models.
8. How to design tasks?
Pictures contribute to increase interest and motivation and a sense of the content of the language,
especially 'unusual' pictures, foster students' imagination, which in turn motivates them to use English.. With pictures we can:
teach, practice, or review new vocabulary
do guided practice (drills)
practice grammatical structures
practice listening comprehension
do writing activities do semi-guided or free speaking practice such as problem solving activities,
role plays, discussions,
Well-chosen games can give Ss a break and at the same time allow Ss to practice language skills. Games are highly motivating since they are amusing and challenging. Again,they employ meaningful and useful language in real contexts. They can increase Ss ability of cooperation in its process, Ss can practice all language skills and do many types of communication.
Games are often used as short warm-up activities or when there is some time left at the end of a lesson.
A game must be more than just fun.
A game should keep all of the students involved and interested.
A game encourage Ss to focus on the use of language rather than on language itself.
A game should give students a chance to learn, practice, or review
1. Tell the difference between linguistic competence and communicative competence.
2. Can you list some communicative activities? What are the common features of these
3. What are the criteria for evaluating communicative activities?
4. What extent do you think communicative language teaching approach can be used in the
context of teaching English in the middle schools?