Teacher Interruptions and Limited Wait Time in EFL Young Learner Classrooms

Yataganbaba E., YILDIRIM R.

International Conference on Teaching and Learning English as an Additional Language (GlobELT), Antalya, Turkey, 14 - 17 April 2016, vol.232, pp.689-695 identifier

  • Publication Type: Conference Paper / Full Text
  • Volume: 232
  • Doi Number: 10.1016/j.sbspro.2016.10.094
  • City: Antalya
  • Country: Turkey
  • Page Numbers: pp.689-695


In human interaction, change of speakership becomes natural at certain points in utterances called Transition Relevance Places (TRPs), and if a listener steps in at a point that is not a TRP, an interruption, and thus a potential trouble may emerge. In an EFL classroom, a teacher can create learning opportunities by managing interaction successfully, with awareness of TRPs and potential interruptions. Lack of this awareness, conversely, may lead to teacher interruptions and limited student participation. This paper attempts to show how teachers' interruptions and limited wait-time practices affect learner participation and learning opportunities in EFL young learner classrooms. The data consist of transcriptions of video recorded classroom interactions that come from three fifth grade intermediate level classrooms. The findings revealed that teachers' interruptions and limited wait-time obstructed learner participation and learning opportunities in both form-and-accuracy and meaning-and-fluency contexts (Seedhouse, 2004). The results demonstrate that teachers' use of language and their Classroom Interactional Competence (CIC, Walsh 2006) are crucial for providing sufficient learning space and facilitating learner engagement. Implications are discussed for teacher education and teachers' CIC. (C) 2016 The Authors. Published by Elsevier Ltd.