Karina - L2-only and anxiety
Where do you stand on the issue of L1 use in the L2 language learning classroom? Reflect on how your practice may induce or reduce foreign language anxiety.
I cannot but agree with Karina when she says that anxiety can be avoided '... if teachers are aware of what their students can or cannot do linguistically in the L2'. From my own experience, this is often the main problem teachers (both novice and experienced) have as activities are chosen for the 'fun', high engagement factor without fully assessing the activity in terms of the lesson aims and above all without having tried it themselves first to see whether the language used by themselves in the trial stage is language students are in possession of. Fleshing out this problem in feedback sessions is often the cause of ah-hah moments amongst teachers and was indeed for me when I started. I must also agree with Victoria as face value is probably one of the triggering factors that determine risk-taking situations. That 'failure to understand' that Victoria mentions, I concur, is a greater anxiety factor. This is why I was personally upset when reading the articles through the spectacles of a language teacher trainer as there was little to no evidence of tutors' awareness of their students' needs beyond the curriculum! Speaking fast in the classroom, for instance, shows a lack of awareness and understanding of Anderson's Cognitive Processing Model (1995) which explains how we listen, or with the basic scaffolding techniques such as grading one's language and speech rate to the students' level without necessarily sounding unnatural, supporting instructions and classroom language with gesture and body language, etc. In short, von Worde's pedagogical implications, I would argue, point at the fact that those tutors and tutors in general need pedagogical training along the lines of CELTA.
Anderson, J. R., 1995. Cognitive Psychology and its Implications. 2nd Ed. New York, Freeman.
Martinez, R. 2012. Beliefs and Practices in the Initial Teacher Training Community regarding Receptive Skills Development and the Pre-Teaching of Vocabulary. MA in TESOL. Sheffield Hallam University.