Home » Teach Language Functions » Two Basic Ways to Present & Practice Language Functions

Two Basic Ways to Present & Practice Language Functions

Language functions define what the person should say or write in communicative situations. The best way to present and practice these functions is in context by using real-life conversations.

Typical Language Functions

  • Inviting
  • Suggesting
  • Promising
  • Apologizing
  • Requesting information
  • Agreeing
  • Disagreeing
  • Offering

How to Teach a Conversation

  1. Start with reading the whole conversation while students listen.
  2. Then divide it into mini dialogues; a stimulus and its response.
  3. Draw students’ attention to the choice of particular words or expressions to express meaning and talk about the speaker‘s intention; i.e. presenting the function.
  4. Then, ask students to generate sentences of their own to practice this function. This keeps the learning process simple and gives students the tools to build on.
  5. Next, students are given a situation or a task with individual roles allotted. They extend the practice by asking one another or engaging in role-playing. The focus here is on a certain function and that function is taken as the cue for the grammar structure taught in the lesson. Such practice provides opportunities for students to practice a range of real-life spoken language in the classroom.

Two Basic Ways to Present Language Functions

1. Inductively

By giving learners different examples of the function and asking students to identify this function

  • What is the speaker’s intention here?
  • What language or expressions did he use to express his intention?

2. Deductively

By presenting a situation in which you ask students for the function and to respond to it. You may ask comprehension questions to check understanding.

Two Basic Ways to Practice Language Functions

1. Receptive Practice

It aims at familiarizing students with a range of functions. Possible activities for receptive practice include:

  • Finding the function in a dialogue or text.
  • Classifying a list of functional language according to functions.
  • Classifying a list of sentences according to their precise meaning.

2. Productive Practice

It may be a relatively controlled practice. Possible activities for it include:

  • Transformations between different examples of a function.
  • Question and answer work.
  • Situational cues (what would you say in these situations?)

6 Tips to Teach Language Functions Effectively

  1. Create a situation and direct students in a certain activity progressively.
  2. Learners should conduct the activity to its conclusion.
  3. Make sure that learners understand what you asked them to do in an activity.
  4. Demonstrate the activity with learners.
  5. Select activities which need comparatively light demands on the learners’ linguistic and creative abilities
  6. Equip learners with expressions and language forms they need for their activities.

Thanks for Reading

Liked This Article?

Share It With Your Networks.

You can also join my email list not only to be notified of my latest ELT articles but also to get my FREE two featured teaching guides and FREE access to my printables’ library

Join My Email List (It’s FREE)

+111 Sure-Fire Active Learning Activities That Work in EFL Classes

Student mastery of learning can occur only when teachers become aware of how to get their students involved and engaged (become active) in the learning process.

That’s why I have released my eBook: Getting Students Engaged in EFL Classes: +111 Active Learning Activities to Make Lessons Engaging and Increase Students Participation.

It is the resource that all teachers need to have because it shows you:

  • The benefits of active learning.
  • How to implement and incorporate active learning in EFL classes.
  • Basic active learning activities: Individual, Pair, Group, and Visual Activities.
  • 111 practical active learning activities for students to do in the classroom.

By getting this eBook, you will realize that you finally found the practicality you need to succeed in the classroom, and you will notice your shift from traditional teaching to the active one that will activate learners and facilitate their learning.

Don’t miss your chance to make a real and lasting impact. With a 100% guarantee, you will lose nothing but gain everything. You will step forward to create engaging lessons and increase students’ participation.

I want nothing more than to see you succeed.

It’s time to take the leap. Get the book from HERE.

Want to Continue Your ELT Professional Development?

Get a Look At My ELT Publications

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.