ERIC Number: ED127776
Record Type: RIE
Publication Date: 1973-Nov
Other Peoples' Languages: A Game Everyone Can Play.
Savignon, Sandra J.
Communicative competence, the ability to use a language effectively in unrehearsed transactions with native speakers, must be the ultimate goal of language teaching. Drills and repetition of patterned phrases do not, in and of themselves, lead to real language use. We should begin giving students opportunities to use language in unrehearsed, unstructured situations much earlier than we currently do. The focus should be from communicative competence to linguistic competence, not vice versa. A research project revealed that a group of beginning French students who had been given systematic opportunities for creative use of French in a variety of unrehearsed settings far outperformed the control group in tests designed to evaluate communicative competence. A cultural context can be simulated to give authenticity to language learning and bring about emotional involvement on the part of the students. Games are as yet a relatively unexploited means for generating spontaneous language transactions. "Mais vous etes ma femme!" is an example which meets all criteria for a good language game. The primary concern of the language teacher must be authenticity in the classroom. Grammatical exercises and drills are most effective following, not preceding, the opportunity for free use of language. (CFM)
Descriptors: Childrens Games, Class Activities, Communicative Competence (Languages), Educational Games, Elementary Secondary Education, Higher Education, Language Fluency, Language Instruction, Language Skills, Linguistic Competence, Linguistic Performance, Pattern Drills (Language), Second Language Learning, Teaching Methods, Verbal Ability
Publication Type: Speeches/Meeting Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Note: Paper presented at the Indiana Foreign Language Teachers' Association fall meeting (Indianapolis, Indiana, November 2, 1973)