There is often a great difference between what a student learns in a second language class and the competence a student needs to use a second language in the context of everyday life. The ability to speak a language and the ability to participate in everyday activities using a language are tightly linked. For many, the goal of language learning is to be able to participate competently in activities with other people using the target language, whether it is in a simple service interaction such as ordering food at a restaurant, or joining a conversation with colleagues during a break at work, or more involved types of participation such as interacting with the hospital staff during an emergency, or giving a presentation to a room full of colleagues, investors, or a scientific community. These interactive situations are potentially influenced by the physical environment, surrounding physical artefacts, gestures and other bodily actions. Often these situated interactions are influenced by what each of the participants may have been doing before and what they are intending to do afterward, and the practices they have developed in similar situations, and the relationships they have developed with the other participants.
These materials introduce a set of concepts, 'toolboxes' and examples for supporting a reflective experiential language learning practice where the learner uses the social interactions in everyday situations as the basis for reflection and future action.
Version in Spanish also available. Version in Catalan available soon.