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Essays on Field Language Learning
by Greg Thomson

Complete Table of Contents

Front Matter

Preface by Carol Orwig

A Few Simple Ideas for New Language Learners: ... and old ones needing some new life

1. Some Background Principles
1.1. Four cute language learning principles you won't forget
1.2. Things to do to learn a language
1.3. Now what do you do with your resources?
2. The Simple Activities
2.1. Simple activity 1: learning names of objects:
2.2. Simple activity 2: talking about stuff in Moran's Lexicarry
2.3. Simple activity 3: working your way through books monolingually
2.4. Simple activity 4: Role cards
2.5. Communicating across information gaps
3. Odds and Ends
3.1. Can technology help in all of this?
3.2. Grammar and pronunciation?
3.3. Reading and Writing?
3.4. These activities are impossible in your situation?
3.5. But you're a language TEACHER!
3.6. Or you're a STUDENT in a language school or language course?
3.7. What it's like to keep evolving
Back Matter
Author note

Kick-starting Your Language Learning: Becoming a basic speaker through fun and games inside a secure nest

Chapter 1. Introduction
1.1. What is a beginning language learner trying to do?
1.2. Learning about the language versus learning the language
1.3. You can learn the language in the language before you know the language: an example
Chapter 2. Getting started with your Language Resource Person
2.1. Your very first language session
2.2. After your language session is over
2.3. Some more advanced techniques for increasing your ability to understand the language
Chapter 3. Getting on with talking
3.1. How soon should I start talking?
3.2. General principles in starting to speak the language
3.3. Survival expressions
3.4. Heavy duty two-way communication: a new phase begins
Chapter 4. Ideas for vocabulary and sentence patterns to learn to comprehend in order to become a basic speaker
4.1. Some ideas for vocabulary to learn to understand
4.2. Sentence patterns you need to be able to understand as a basic speaker
4.3. Suggestions for covering a basic range of language functions and communication situations
4.4. Final thoughts regarding using the above suggestions
Chapter 5. Conclusion (Kick-starting your language learning)
5.1. Going on once you're a basic speaker
5.2. Other Resources You Might Want to Consider
5.3. A Final Summary and Overview
Back Matter

Language Learning in the Real World for Non-beginners

Chapter 1. Introduction
1.1. Key principles of design for an ongoing language learning program
1.2. Principle I: Expose yourself to massive comprehensible input
1.3. Principle II: Engage in extensive extemporaneous speaking.
1.4. Principle III: Learn to know the people whose language you are learning.
Chapter 2. A few practical concerns
2.1. How much time do you have?
2.2. Whom do you have?
2.3. What should you learn next?
Chapter 3. Things to do to keep on keeping on
3.1. Stage II language learning activities
3.2. Stage III language learning activities
3.3. What about Stage IV?
Chapter 4. Conclusion (Language learning for non-beginners)
Back Matter

The Use of a Book of Photos in Initial Comprehension Learning

Setting up the photo book
Nouns, transitive subjects and objects
First pass:. Identifying humans in the pictures
Second pass:. Identify objects which are especially associated with the people in the pictures
Third pass:. Simple transitive sentences
Other basic sentence types, locations, instruments
Fourth pass:. Lots of verbs
Fifth pass:. Existential sentences, more nouns, locations, instruments
Summary of first week
Going on--emphasis still on simplex sentences
Constituents of noun phrases
Negation, questions, commands, modality, voice
Coordination, and related phenomena
Other NP business
Noun roles
More complex structures
You can't get everything by one method
Unstructured use
Monolingual use
Later use, and better planned photo books
Back Matter

Leave me alone! Can't you see I'm learning your language?

1. Introduction
1.1. Learning a language means becoming part of a speech community.
2. Your entry point into the speech community
2.1. Finding a mediating person
2.2. The mediating person as a Language Resource Person
2.3. Language learning at the entry point: no free lunches
2.4. Language learning at the entry point: time to think about doing something
3. Branching out: getting a network
3.1. Introduction to social networks
3.2. Your new social network at the outset
3.3. Enlarging and strengthening your network
4. Coping with some less than ideal situations
4.1. Learning in a truly monolingual society
4.2. Learning in a totally bilingual society
4.3. Language Learning when there is limited access to the society
5. My network is growing and strengthening--now what?
5.1. Bootstrapping your way to good behaviour
5.2. Systematic language learning in your new speech community
5.3. But it sounds so hard.
6. Conclusion (Leave me alone!)
Back Matter

Context for this page:

Go to SIL home page This page is an extract from the LinguaLinks Library, Version 3.5, published on CD-ROM by SIL International, 1999. [Ordering information.]

Page content last modified: 3 June 1998