Monday, February 06, 2017

TEFLology Episode 54: Toki Pona, Duoethnography, and Robert Gardner

(TEFLology Podcast)

The new episode of TEFLology came out last Wednesday--on their website here, and also embedded below.

I really don't have much intelligent to say about this.  (All the topics were new to me.)

The only general comments I have are:
* It was interesting

*The banter between the TEFLologists was pretty good, and helped to make this episode more fun to listen to.

In the specifics, 3 thoughts occurred to me as I was listening.

* Toki Pona, as the TEFLologists described it, reminded me of Newspeak from 1984.  You remember, the part where Syme bragged to Wilson:  "Do you know that Newspeak is the only language in the world whose vocabulary gets smaller every year?'"

* A couple parts of the talk about Toki Pana also were in line with what Stephen Pinker wrote about in The Language Instinct, specifically the discussion about language myths (Isn't it a myth that some jungle tribes can't count higher than 1, 2 or many?) and the prediction that children raised with Toki Pana as a first language would naturally add complexity to it.  (Stephen Pinker wrote about children raised in pidgin families doing the same thing.)

* Interesting talk about research on motivation.
One of my professors in my Applied Linguistics degree was adamant that researching motivation was a waste of time.  For many of the same reasons that the TEFLologists mention.  And also because of all the problems inherent with self-reporting.

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