Lauren Sadow
Lauren Sadow

Lauren Sadow is a PhD student at the Australian National University (ANU) in Canberra, Australia. She has a Bachelor of Arts majoring in Linguistics from the ANU, and a Masters of Applied Linguistics (TESOL) from the University of New England, Australia. She lectures at Griffith University (Brisbane, Australia) in English Linguistics. Her main interest lies in improving the teaching of invisible culture, fostering greater cross-cultural competence in students, and using research to improve pedagogy. She researches in semantics, pragmatics, and English language teaching.

 

The presentation examined the needs of teachers and students in applying the Natural Semantic Metalanguage to language teaching pedagogy.

Through the research of Lauren Sadow towards developing the linguistic theory of the Natural Semantic Metalanguage (NSM) (e.g. Wierzbicka, 2006) as a pedagogical tool for teaching language and culture, the need to focus on practitioners in order to ensure that the resulting tool was functional was identified. Feedback from her pilot study (Sadow, 2015) showed that while NSM can be an effective method for teaching culture, its usability could be improved by strengthening the connection between the academic theory and practice. To achieve this, Lauren Sadow conducted focus groups with ESL teachers across Australia, using their experience and expertise to inform a larger project of creating a dictionary and teaching resource.

This presentation provided a discussion of the current research on applying NSM with ESL teachers in Australia, and demonstrated how these needs can be applied to NSM to develop a practical tool for use in classrooms.