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Task Familiarity and Interactional Feedback in Child ESL Classrooms

Alison Mackey, Alec Peter Kanganas and Rhonda Oliver
TESOL Quarterly
Vol. 41, No. 2 (Jun., 2007), pp. 285-312
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/40264354
Page Count: 28
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Task Familiarity and Interactional Feedback in Child ESL Classrooms
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Abstract

In this article we report on a study undertaken with ESL children between 7 and 8 years old. They carried out communicative tasks in pairs in second language classrooms. We examined patterns of their taskbased conversational interactions while we manipulated their familiarity with the procedure and content of the tasks. We found that learners working through unfamiliar tasks (in terms of both content and procedure) produced more clarification requests and confirmation checks and provided more corrective feedback on nontargetlike utterances to each other. However, learners engaged in procedurally familiar tasks had more opportunities to use feedback, and learners engaged in tasks that were familiar in both content and procedure showed more actual use of feedback.

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