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Second language learning has often been taught using a rigid and uniform

approach where grammar, sound production, development of reading skills, and


written composition are taught as discrete units (Rivers, n.d.). This approach tends
to lead to the implementation of artificial types of drills and practice exercises that
do not prepare students for normal use of language and causes learners to
disengage. Unfortunately, educators often get caught up on relying on traditional
theories of teaching language out of comfort and convenience. In order for
educators to create an environment where effective language learning can develop
they need to understand their role as a facilitator of learning and develop learning
strategies that help empower students to use language creatively and make it their
own. Two theories that can be used in the classroom to help promote successful
language acquisition are the Motivational Self System and the Language
Socialization Theory (Ortega, 2014).
Engaging the students in the classroom requires lots of patience. Ideally, the
students should be willing to acquire the new language skills by realizing the benefit
associated with being multilingual. But not all learners have the same eagerness to
engage in class due to a lack of motivation. According to Ortega (2014) students are
more likely to be intrinsically motivated when they engage in behaviour that they
understand as self-initiated by choice and largely sustained by inherent enjoyment
in the activity (p.176). Educators can help promote intrinsic motivation by
providing learning opportunities that allow students the flexibility to make their own
choices. For example, during a unit on food names, a teacher can collaborate with
the students on a list of names of foods that they would be interested in learning
about. This activity not only provides students with the opportunity to make choices
but it also offers an opportunity for the students to highlight personal interests as
well as likes and dislikes. The more students can make personal connections to a
topic the greater chance they have of being motivated to learn about it.
In addition to developing opportunities where students have choices, it is
important that educators develop activities that allow students to become
connected with the culture that surrounds the language. Language socialization is
mainly ethnographic and longitudinal, focused on the relationship between
language and culture, folklore, rituals, costumes, etc. typical of the second language
place of origin (Ortega, 2014). Social events provide students with the opportunity
to learn a language naturally while drawing on their own cultural knowledge and
experiences. Social experiences also help students to understand the culturallinguistics behaviour of other cultures while to developing a deeper understanding
of their own value systems and their own culture language (Rivers, n.d.). Activities
that would support the socialization theory include class outings to cultural festivals.
For example, in Coquitlam every year Maillardville hosts the Festival du Bois, which
is a large francophone festival. This festival would be a great opportunity to attend
with students because it hosts activities and attractions, such as live music, that
reflect the French culture.

In conclusion, both theories complement each other, generate self-confidence


and a more cohesive social interaction, and certainly better second language
students.

References
Ortega, L. (2014). Understanding second language acquisition. Routledge.
Rivers, W. (n.d.) Principles of interactive language teaching. Harvard University