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2016-11-07 13:31:59 -0400 received badge  Teacher (source)
2016-11-05 23:00:17 -0400 answered a question how can pragmatics be useful in teaching English language as a foreign language

There are so many ways pragmatics can be useful! First of all, consider how many speech acts we have to make everyday. Invitations, refusals, apologies, etc. Most of these have formulaic scripts (set answer-response turns in the conversation) and strategies that go along with each. Pragmatic scripts are also an important part of service encounters like buying clothes at a store, eating out at a restaurant, or getting a haircut. What one might say in each of these situations could differ depending on the language and/or cultural setting. If your students plan to travel abroad it could be very useful to teach them these practical skills. Another very interesting way to use pragmatics in teaching EFL would be to talk about how politeness differs by language or by region. In some cultures being direct might be considered polite and in other cultures being indirect might be considered polite. Etc. Etc. One could also talk about pragmatics and humor in teaching EFL.

2016-11-05 23:00:17 -0400 answered a question How does L1 affect L2 learning?

Could you be a little more specific with your question? I am not sure exactly how to answer, but will try my best. There are several theories out there that might answer your question. A lot are based on whether you accept the idea of Universal Grammar (UG). (Check out wikipedia for a pretty good description). A very popular theory in second language acquisition is the Full Transfer/Full Access hypothesis by Sprouse and Schwartz. Traditionally, it's been thought that when we get language input as a baby this activates the parts of universal grammar that are relevant to our L1. Some say this means that our L1 grammar 'replaces' the universal grammar which is why it is then harder to learn an L2 because we can only process it through the L1 grammar perspective rather than the universal grammar perspective we had as babies. In L2 acquisition this is talked about as L1 interference. However, Sprouse and Schwartz claim that in learning an L2 all the applicable grammar from our L1 transfers and we still have access to the universal grammar. This would make it possible to reach near native-like fluency. Others who support the critical period hypothesis would say we lose access to the universal grammar after a certain age of adolescence. Therefore, learning an L2 with native-like proficiency is difficult or nearly impossible. Under this critical period hypothesis it follows that if the L2 shares many of the same characteristics of the L1 grammar then it should be slightly easier to learn.