Interaction facilitates language learning by connecting what learners hear and what they say
Pangyo, Korea. Just like learning how to cook takes more than reading a cookbook, learning a language requires more than reading a textbook. You learn how to cook by cooking and how to speak a language by speaking.
The language learning industry is bombarded with schools, English academies, and platforms that are focused on the basics of language learning like vocabulary, grammar, and reading, while there are few platforms where language learners can speak and interact with others in real-time.
Hallo–a real-time online language learning platform–is built around speaking.
The Cofounder and CEO of Hallo, Joon Beh, says, “As an immigrant, I understand the challenges of learning a new language: the biggest one being, not having opportunities to speak. Based on my experiences, the most effective way to learn a new language is by speaking, practicing, and interacting with real people 24/7.”
Hallo provides real-time interactions between students learning English and native English teachers through live, one-on-one, and group classes. This interaction is critical to Hallo students’ success to become fluent in English and overcome the fear of speaking.
Hallo’s method to learning English is supported by The Interaction Hypothesis of Second Language Acquisition–a language theory first studied in the 1980’s. This theory states that conversations enable language learning by connecting what learners hear and what they say. Instead of going in one ear and out the other, face-to-face interactions promote better language learning.
There are two parts to an interaction–speaking and listening. For example, when a teacher speaks to a student. To optimize this interaction, students are better able to process this when teachers speak slowly with greater articulation, use comprehension checks, and a simplified vocabulary. At Hallo, “We ask the teachers to cater and adjust to each student’s needs when they’re speaking,” teacher manager Jaime Makin says.
However, listening by itself is not enough to learn a language. Just like eating a pizza doesn’t mean you’ll be able to cook a good pizza, you can’t listen to people speak a new language and expect to just pick it up–language learners also need to speak.
Speaking requires effort, but Hallo makes this easier–at the click of a button, students can immediately start speaking with native English teachers or other students anytime, anywhere.
Hallo allows students to engage in dynamic conversations that require them to adapt and react to what other people are saying. Optimizing this interaction implies improving the quantity and quality of speaking and listening. Hallo is dedicated to this process and is constantly refining their products to allow teachers and students to better interact with each other.
By making speaking a standard, Hallo is asking students to step outside their comfort zone and interact because they believe (and studies show) that interaction during language learning is positively correlated with growth.
To learn more about the interaction hypothesis, visit here.
To put the interaction hypothesis to the test, visit Hallo and start practicing English now.
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“Hallo allows students to engage in dynamic conversations that require them to adapt and react to what other people say. Hallo believes that interaction facilitates language learning by connecting what learners hear and what they say.”
Is this statement true? I have searched the Internet and found that Michael Long promoted the Interaction Theory of Language Learning to continue Stephen Krashen’s Input Hypothesis.
The problem is that on the Internet, we can find proof for any assumption. Here is a ‘proof’ that the opposite statement is true: “We do not acquire language by study, or by speaking or writing. We acquire it only one way: understanding what we hear or read and what we call ‘comprehensible Input. The ability to produce language results from getting the right kind of Input.” – Stephen Krashen.
In my opinion, the Interaction Theory does not work because listening and speaking are NOT the right kinds of Input. It precludes repetition and is limited to only one sense: listening. It prevents other senses, for example, visual or kinesthetic. Most importantly, it does not allow subconscious training and does not include support in the native language or capacity to introduce new words or concepts.
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