Second Language Acquisition Theory Essay

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P1.A1. Second Language Acquisition Theories Steven Krashen developed 5 theories of Second Language Development. The Acquisition-Learning Hypothesis states that people acquire language naturally, without any formal training, simply through their interactions with others (Freeman and Freeman p.62). Language learning, however, is a more complex process which requires instruction. Both of these processes are necessary for a person to acquire a second language. Implications for teaching include creating authentic social interaction time with peers in the classroom, collaboration with peers, modeling appropriate language use and using repetition (Vose). Krashen’s Natural Order Hypothesis says that language learning follows a natural sequential and predictable order. As language builds upon itself, students will make predictable errors. As a teacher it is necessary to know the scope and sequence of L2 development (Freeman and Freeman p.63). We must be aware of where each student falls in that sequence in order to scaffold them into the next stages of their language learning. It is important to understand that students have a silent period in which they are taking language in, prior to…show more content…
BICS stands for Basic Interpersonal Communication Skills. These skills develop in around 1-2 years. BICS is social, conversational language that a person will pick up without specific instruction. BICS helps students develop CALP, Cognitive Academic Language Proficiency, which is learned in an educational setting. According to Cummins, academic vocabulary can be mastered in 5-7 years in an enriched environment, 7-10 years in non-enriched environment (Wright p.40). Teachers should encourage students to make connections between previous learning in their first language to support their academic language learning in their second language. Students need to be scaffolded and provided explicit instruction in their acquisition of CALP
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