Dr. Joseph Poulshock

Author Archives: Dr. Joseph Poulshock

Dr. Joseph Poulshock is a professor of English linguistics in the Faculty of Economics at Senshu University.

Algorithms for Communicative Activities

When language learners fail to communicate, their messages create problems. When they communicate successfully, their messages solve problems. As language teachers, we want to help learners solve the problem of getting and sending messages. To do this, in our classes, we need clear goals that produce clear outcomes that motivate and promote meaningful communication. For […]

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1 – The Dictation Algorithm

The Dictation Algorithm (Meaningful Input & Output) Dictation is a simple activity, but it is algorithmic because we can base dictation on meaningful themes, and because it employs the following communicative principles: The messenger (a) gives a new message to a listener, and the listener must (b) transfer this message to print form. These actions […]

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Elemental Lectures

Lecture and Sleep

Click on the links to download lectures. Spring Semester Lecture # – Lecture Title — Key Word Reading: Title and Link Lecture 0 – Introduction to Elemental Lingusitics Reading: Introducing the Elements Lecture  1 – Design Features — Design Reading: Element 1 – Design Features Lecture  2 – Animal Communication — Animals Reading: Element 2 – Animal […]

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Works Cited

This list is a draft. We are still adding references.  Alegre, M. A., & Gordon, P. (1996). Red rats eater exposes recursion in children’s word formation. Cognition, 60(1), 65–82. Asher, J. J. (1969). The Total Physical Response Approach to Second Language Learning. The Modern Language Journal, Vol. 53, No. 1 (Jan., 1969), pp. 3–17 Benati, […]

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3 – The Cloze Algorithm

Cloze Gaps (Meaningful Input) Cloze tests are generally considered a simple and reliable way to measure language proficiency. But cloze-type activities also employ the “generation effect” (Brown, et. Al., 2014). That is, when learners make the extra effort to generate the answer for the blank, they tend to have a better memory for the target […]

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4 – The Problem Solver Algorithm

The Problem-Solver (Meaningful Output) After part one of the John Wooden story, we can do a speaking activity. Nation (2013) recommends the problem-solver, and after making and doing many problem-solvers myself, I can strongly recommend the activity because it is genuinely algorithmic. With problem-solvers we use clear principles, which can generate an unlimited number of […]

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Applied Lectures

Lecture 1: The Fundamentals of Language Education Reading: Grand Unified Theory Lecture 2: How Do Children Learn Languages? (Part 1) Reading: The Theory of Communication Lecture 3: How Do Children Learn Languages? (Part 2) Reading: The Theory of Input Lecture 4: Second Language Learning (Part 1) Reading: The Theory of Big Data Lecture 5: Second […]

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5 – Story Gap Algorithm

Story Gaps (Meaningful Input, Language Focus, Fluency) Many controlled activities are not communicative. For example, with pair dialogs, students practice fake conversations about other people, which may have a functional purpose, such asking permission, stating the time of day, or apologizing. But students are not communicating real messages to each other. With story gaps, however, […]

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6 – Picture Gap Algorithm

Picture Gaps (Meaningful Output & Input) Picture gaps are like story gaps. Pair sit in gap position. The speaker faces the screen, and the listener (and drawer) faces the speaker. If there is no projector, the speaker can hold picture and talk about it. The speaker just needs to make sure that the listener/drawer cannot […]

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