Teaching Listening n Speaking

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Transcript of Teaching Listening n Speaking

DR ROSNIAH MUSTAFFA PPBL, FSSK

The role of listeningListening the neglected overlooked or taken for granted skill. Assumed that listening ability will develop automatically through exposure to the language. Of the time an individual is engaged in communication, 9%-writing, 16% reading, 30% speaking and 45% listening. So, listening is important

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listening process.

Bottom-up process in listening- we use our knowledge of language and our ability to process acoustic signals to make sense of the sounds that speech presents to us. We use whatever clues available to infer meaning- the placement of stress, pauses, non verbal behaviour etc Assign meanings to words and use logical reasoning to infer relationship bet them - Rain in Johor damaged property. Thousands homelessTHEORY AND PRACTICE FOR ESOL 3

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During the processes of identifying sounds, inferring meaning and anticipating what comes next, memory clearly plays a crucial role. We can only hold word sequences for only a few seconds and only initial analysis of the language is possible, concentrating on key words or pauses or other significant features. The load on the short term memory is heavy as listeners try to hold various parts of the message in mind while inferring meaning and deciding what is necessary to retain. Overload can occur if there is too much unfamiliar info and the greater part of a message can be lost. It is the gist of the spoken message rather than its detailed structure that is retained and stored in the long term memory

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Top down process in listening involve knowledge that a listener brings to a text sometimes called inside the head info as opposed to the info that is available within the text itself. Top down listening infers meaning from contextual clues and from making links between the spoken message and various types of prior knowledge which listeners hold inside their heads. Contextual clues to meaning come from knowledge of the particular situation Prior knowledge has been termed schematic knowledge which consists of the mental frameworks we hold in our memories for various topics.

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One category schemata used by listeners is formal schemata. A second category of schemata is that of content schemata which include general world knowledge, sociocultural knowledge and topic knowledge. Local knowledge might be necessary to infer meaning Both function simultaneously and are mutually dependent. the current model of listening is therefore an interactive one in which linguistic information, contextual clues and prior knowledge interact to enable comprehension. Comprehension is always only selective and partialTHEORY AND PRACTICE FOR ESOL 6

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Brown and Yule [1983a] suggest dividing language functions into-

1. language for transactional purpose. 2. language for interactional purposes.

Transactional language function-message oriented focus on content and conveying factual info. Clarity and precisionTHEORY AND PRACTICE FOR ESOL 7

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Interactional language function- social type talk; person oriented more than message oriented. Objective-to establish and maintain social relationship Important features- identifying with other persons concerns, being nice etc

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Uncertainties for foreign language listeners

Environmental uncertainties - background conversation, traffic noise etc muttering Uncertainties of confidence-learners often have unrealistic expectations and try to understand each word of a listening text Uncertainties from presentation of speech-unplanned and unrehearsed spoken language is very different from the language of written texts -repetitions, pauses, fillers, false starts, incomplete sentences, restructurings, and corrections which are typical of speech. If we are training students ultimately to be able to manage real listening situations, we need to build their confidence in dealing with authentic speech.

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Uncertainties because of gaps in the messageenvironmental noise, poorly articulated speech or poor attention can be responsible for creating gaps in the message that a listener hears. Uncertain strategies-in face to face communication, if a gap occurs in the message, a listener can ask for clarification

Uncertainties of language-if the purpose of listening is for input and the text presents grammar, vocab and certain phonological features.[use recordings made for English language learners] if the purpose is to develop the ability to deal with listening outside the classroom, then texts will be needed which present natural language [ spontaneous informal talk]

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Uncertainties of content. required to make sense of a text stds may experience difficulty in inferring and interpreting meaning. The language is not likely to cause problems but a lack of schematic knowledge may well do so.

Major implication here for teaching listening is the need for a pre-listening stage in which existing prior knowledge can be activated and missing prior knowledge can be introduced visual uncertainties- speakers usually provides non verbal clues to meaning eg lip movements, facial expressions and gestures. The role of vision in first language listening especially lip movements is particularly imp when the auditory input is of poor qualityTHEORY AND PRACTICE FOR ESOL 11

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3 communicative listening modes1. Bidirectional-two-way communicative listening. Take turns exchanging speaker role and listener role. 2.

Unidirectional we hear speakers but unable to interact. [overheard conversation, anouncements, radio etc]

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3. Autodirectional a self-dialogue communication in which we may not be aware of our internal roles as both speaker and listener/reactor in our own thought process We attend to our own internal language which we produce as we think such as planning strategies or making decision by talking and listening to ourselves Listening is not a passive experienceTHEORY AND PRACTICE FOR ESOL 13

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the pre-listening stage- to contextualize the text, providing any info needed to help learners appreciate the setting and the role relationships between participants. predicting content from the title of a talk; talking about a picture which relates to the text; discussing the topic; answering a set of questions about the topic; and agreeing or disagreeing with opinions about the topic

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while listening- the work at the while listening stage needs to link in relevant ways to the pre-listening work. The aim is to conform learners expectations and to help them to get the gist of the content as it relates to the written text post listening- intensive phase of study where aspects of bottom up listening are practiced eg intensive listening for note taking, summarize content of text

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Speaking

Following the rules When people with similar cultural and linguistic backgrounds get together they speak to each other easily because they know the rules of conversation in their language and their shared culture. When they write to each other they obey certain conventions. Such rules and conventions are not written anywhere, nor are they easy to define. But at some cultural level our shared schemata help us to communicate with each other successfully.THEORY AND PRACTICE FOR ESOL 16

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areas of rules which we should consider; sociocultural rules speakers from similar cultural backgrounds know how to speak to each other , how formal to be, what kind of language they can use, how loud to speak, or how close to stand to each other. Such rules or shared cultural habits - determine how we speak to each other, when participants are of different social or professional status. guide our behaviour in a number of speech events eg invitation conversations, socialising and negotiations.

turn-taking in any conversation decisions have to be taken about when each person should speak by knowing how to signal verbally or visually that they want a turn, by recognising when other speakers are signalling they want to finish and therefore giving them space to take a speaking turn.

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Different styles, different genres

Our language use is determined by several factors. First is the purpose of our communication, what we want to achieve. to achieve that purpose is determined by the setting, the channel we are using to communicate by, and the type of communication [genre] which we are involved with.

If we want to give people facts[our purpose] in a lecture theatre[setting] through a microphone [channel] we will use a lecture genre with its typical patterns of organisation, and this genre will determine the style of the language we use. This is different from how we transmit the same information to a friend in an informal conversation. This in turn would be different from the kind of language we use when writing the same information in a magazine genre; when exchanging e mails on the subject with a colleague our use of language will be different.THEORY AND PRACTICE FOR ESOL 18

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Skills and strategies in speaking English Reasons for practising speaking in the classroom- to keep up rapport in relationships, influence people, and win negotiations. It is a skill by which they are judged , first impressions are being formed. Learning to speak competently is a complex task. Learn