ERIC Number: ED374444
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 1994
Reference Count: N/A
What Is a Functional Model of Language? PEN 95.
Noting that a number of Australian states have adopted a functional model of language in their English syllabus documents, this PEN explains the term "functional model" and explores the implications of a functional approach to the teaching of English across all key learning areas in the Australian primary classroom. The paper notes that the term "functional" comes from the systemic functional theory based on the work of Michael Halliday. The paper next discusses the assumptions a functional approach takes, including language as a social process, spoken texts are just as complex as written texts, and the context in which language is used determines its appropriateness. The paper also discusses terms used in the functional model (including "field,""tenor,""mode") and three levels of language (semantic, lexicogrammatical, and graphophonic). The paper discusses implications for teachers, such as valuing the diversity of language backgrounds, providing meaningful language activities, valuing talk, and using real texts (both literary and factual). The paper then presents a short case study illustrating implications for students. The paper concludes with advice for teachers on how to begin. Contains seven references and a list of five additional resources. (RS)
Descriptors: Case Studies, Discourse Communities, Elementary Education, English Instruction, Foreign Countries, Language Acquisition, Language Arts, Language Role, Teaching Methods
Primary English Teaching Association, Laura Street, Newtown, New South Wales 2042, Australia ($1.20 Australian per copy; package of 10, $10 Australian).
Publication Type: Opinion Papers
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Primary English Teaching Association, Newtown (Australia).
Identifiers - Location: Australia