Language competences in lower secondary French-as-a-foreign language classrooms
Keywords:French as a foreign language, linguistic competence , grammar teaching, vocabulary teaching, pronunciation teaching
Current language education policies in Europe place a strong emphasis on skills and the ability to use language to interact with others. The Companion volume to the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages even states that in an action-oriented approach to language learning, “competence exists only in action”, thus rejecting the traditional competence/performance dichotomy (Council of Europe 2020, 139). In such an educational context, what is the role of language competences (i.e. grammar, vocabulary and pronunciation) in the language classroom? This article presents a classroom research study of French-as-a-foreign-language teaching in lower secondary schools in Norway. 45 French lessons in six schools were video recorded and analyzed to examine how and to what extent six teachers and their learners worked explicitly with the three components of linguistic competence. The findings show that grammar and vocabulary are explicitly taught in most classrooms, whereas pronunciation is rarely explicitly addressed.
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