Volume 7, Issue 2
  • ISSN 2215-1931
  • E-ISSN: 2215-194X
Buy:$35.00 + Taxes



This paper aims to investigate how productive oral vocabulary development can be promoted by focusing on word stress patterns. The Rhythmic Fight Club (RFC) pronunciation technique has been used in numerous ESL/EFL classrooms, but its effect on the L2 vocabulary development of learners has yet to be investigated. The present study focused on adult ESL learners and tested a four-stage learning cycle aimed at developing productive oral vocabulary. This paper focuses on findings related to one aspect of that learning cycle which used the RFC to draw learner attention to word stress patterns in order to control productive output. Findings reveal that repetition of target words whilst making a gesture helped to enhance the learners’ productive output accordingly. The paper concludes that kinaesthetic/tactile classroom teaching techniques such as the RFC can help learners to develop productive oral vocabulary by reconceptualising their perception of English speech rhythm.


Article metrics loading...

Loading full text...

Full text loading...


  1. Adolphs, S. , & Schmitt, N.
    (2003) Lexical coverage of spoken discourse. Applied Linguistics, 24(4), 425–438. 10.1093/applin/24.4.425
    https://doi.org/10.1093/applin/24.4.425 [Google Scholar]
  2. Alibali, M. W. , Kita, S. , & Young, A. J.
    (2000) Gesture and the process of speech production: We think, therefore we gesture. Language and Cognitive Processes, 15(6), 593–613. doi:  10.1080/016909600750040571
    https://doi.org/10.1080/016909600750040571 [Google Scholar]
  3. Altman, R.
    (1997) Oral production of vocabulary: A case study. In J. Coady & T. Huckin (Eds.), Second language vocabulary acquisition (pp.69–97). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  4. Armstrong, D. F. , Wilcox, S. , & Stokoe, W.
    (1995) Gesture and the nature of language. Cambridge, UK: Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/CBO9780511620911
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511620911 [Google Scholar]
  5. Baddeley, A.
    (1990) Human memory: Theory and practice. Hove: Erlbaum.
    [Google Scholar]
  6. Burri, M. , Baker, A. , & Acton, W.
    (2016) Anchoring academic vocabulary with a “hard-hitting” haptic pronunciation teaching technique. In T. Jones & J. B. Gilbert (Eds.), Pronunciation in the classroom: The overlooked essential. Alexandria, Virginia: Tesol Press 2016.
    [Google Scholar]
  7. Celce-Murcia, M. , Brinton, D. M. , Goodwin, J. M. , & Griner, B.
    (2010) Teaching pronunciation: A reference for teachers of English to speakers of other languages (2nd ed.). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  8. Cerreta, S. , & Trofimovich, P.
    (2018) Engaging the senses: A sensory-based approach to L2 pronunciation instruction for actors. Journal of Second Language Pronunciation, 4, 46–72. doi:  10.1075/jslp.00003.cer
    https://doi.org/10.1075/jslp.00003.cer [Google Scholar]
  9. Clare, A. , Wilson, J. J. , & Dimond-Bayir, S.
    (2015) Speakout Intermediate. Harlow, Essex: Pearson Education.
    [Google Scholar]
  10. Copeman, P.
    (2012) Performing English: Adapting actor voice training techniques for TESOL to improve pronunciation intelligibility. English Australia Journal, 27(2), 17–33.
    [Google Scholar]
  11. Council of Europe
    Council of Europe (2001) Common European framework of reference for languages: Learning, teaching, assessment. Cambridge, U.K: Press Syndicate of the University of Cambridge.
    [Google Scholar]
  12. Couper, G.
    (2011) What makes pronunciation teaching work? Testing for the effect of two variables: socially constructed metalanguage and critical listening. Language Awareness, 20(3), 159–182. doi:  10.1080/09658416.2011.570347
    https://doi.org/10.1080/09658416.2011.570347 [Google Scholar]
  13. Creswell, J. W.
    (2014) Research design: Qualitative, quantitative and mixed methods approaches. London: SAGE Publications.
    [Google Scholar]
  14. Dauer, R. M.
    (2005) The lingua franca core: A new model for pronunciation instruction?TESOL Quarterly, 39(3), 543–550. 10.2307/3588494
    https://doi.org/10.2307/3588494 [Google Scholar]
  15. Elley, W.
    (1989) Vocabulary acquisition from listening to stories. Reading Research Quarterly, 24. doi:  10.2307/747863
    https://doi.org/10.2307/747863 [Google Scholar]
  16. Fitzpatrick, T. , & Clenton, J.
    (2017) Making sense of learner performance on tests of productive vocabulary knowledge. TESOL Quarterly, 51(4), 844–867. doi:  10.1002/tesq.356
    https://doi.org/10.1002/tesq.356 [Google Scholar]
  17. Fitzpatrick, T. , & Wray, A.
    (2006) Breaking up is not so hard to do: Individual differences in L2 memorization. The Canadian Modern Language Review, 63(1), 35–56. 10.3138/cmlr.63.1.35
    https://doi.org/10.3138/cmlr.63.1.35 [Google Scholar]
  18. Fraser, H.
    (2001) Teaching pronunciation: A handbook for teachers and trainers. Sydney: Department of Education Training and Youth Affairs.
    [Google Scholar]
  19. Gibbons, P.
    (2006) Bridging discourses in the ESL classroom students, teachers and researchers. New York: Continuum.
    [Google Scholar]
  20. Goldin-Meadow, S. , Nusbaum, H. , Kelly, S. D. , & Wagner, S.
    (2001) Explaining math: Gesturing lightens the load. Psychological Science, 12(6), 516–522. doi:  10.1111/1467‑9280.00395
    https://doi.org/10.1111/1467-9280.00395 [Google Scholar]
  21. Haastrup, K. , & Henriksen, B.
    (2000) Vocabulary acquisition: Acquiring depth of knowledge through network building. International Journal of Applied Linguistics, 10(2), 221–240. 10.1111/j.1473‑4192.2000.tb00149.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1473-4192.2000.tb00149.x [Google Scholar]
  22. Karmiloff-Smith, A.
    (1986) Stage/structure versus phase/process in modelling linguistic and cognitive development. In I. Levin (Ed.), Stage and structure: Reopening the debate. Norwood: Ablex.
    [Google Scholar]
  23. Kelly, S. D. , McDevitt, T. , & Esch, M.
    (2009) Brief training with co-speech gesture lends a hand to word learning in a foreign language. Language and Cognitive Processes, 24(2), 313–334. doi:  10.1080/01690960802365567
    https://doi.org/10.1080/01690960802365567 [Google Scholar]
  24. Laufer, B.
    (1998) The development of passive and active vocabulary in second language: Same or different?Applied Linguistics, 19(2), 255–271. 10.1093/applin/19.2.255
    https://doi.org/10.1093/applin/19.2.255 [Google Scholar]
  25. Laufer, B. , & Eliasson, S.
    (1993) What causes avoidance in L2 learning. Studies in Second Language Acquisition, 15, 35–48. doi:  10.1017/S0272263100011657
    https://doi.org/10.1017/S0272263100011657 [Google Scholar]
  26. Laufer, B. , & Paribakht, T. S.
    (1998) The relationship between passive and active vocabularies: Effects of language learning context. Language Learning, 48(3), 365–391. 10.1111/0023‑8333.00046
    https://doi.org/10.1111/0023-8333.00046 [Google Scholar]
  27. Levis, J. M. , & Wichmann, A.
    (2015) English intonation – Form and meaning. In M. Reed & J. M. Levis (Eds.), The Handbook of English Pronunciation (pp.139–155). New York: Wiley Blackwell. 10.1002/9781118346952.ch8
    https://doi.org/10.1002/9781118346952.ch8 [Google Scholar]
  28. Macedonia, M.
    (2014) Bringing back the body into the mind: Gestures enhance word learning in foreign language. Frontiers in Psychology: Educational psychology, 5, 1–6. doi:  10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01467
    https://doi.org/10.3389/fpsyg.2014.01467 [Google Scholar]
  29. Macedonia, M. , & Knosche, T. R.
    (2011) Body in mind: How gestures empower foreign language learning. Mind, Brain and Education, 5(4), 196–211. 10.1111/j.1751‑228X.2011.01129.x
    https://doi.org/10.1111/j.1751-228X.2011.01129.x [Google Scholar]
  30. Matsuoka, W., & Hirsh, D.
    (2010) Vocabulary learning through reading: Does an ELT course book provide good opportunities?Reading in a Foreign Language, 22(1), 56–70.
    [Google Scholar]
  31. McNeill, D.
    (2012) How language began: Gesture and speech in human evolution. New York: Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/CBO9781139108669
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139108669 [Google Scholar]
  32. Miller, S. F.
    (2006) Targeting pronunciation: Communicating clearly in English. New York: Houghton Mifflin Co.
    [Google Scholar]
  33. Milton, J. , & Alexiou, T.
    (2009) Vocabulary size and the Common European Framework of Reference for Languages (pp.194–211). 10.1057/9780230242258_12
    https://doi.org/10.1057/9780230242258_12 [Google Scholar]
  34. Mister, B.
    (2019) Activating productive oral vocabulary by focusing on speech rhythm. Paper presented at the11th Pronunciation in Second Language Learning and Teaching Conference. Northern Arizona, Flagstaff, USA.
    [Google Scholar]
  35. Murphy, J., & Kandil, M.
    (2004) Word-level stress patterns in the academic word list. System (32), 61–74. 10.1016/j.system.2003.06.001
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2003.06.001 [Google Scholar]
  36. Nation, I. S. P.
    (2001) Learning vocabulary in another language. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press. 10.1017/CBO9781139524759
    https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9781139524759 [Google Scholar]
  37. O’Loughlin, R.
    (2012) Tuning in to vocabulary frequency in coursebooks. RELC Journal, 43(2), 255–269. 10.1177/0033688212450640
    https://doi.org/10.1177/0033688212450640 [Google Scholar]
  38. Reeves, T. C.
    (2006) Design research from a technology perspective. In J. Van den Akker , K. Gravemeijer , S. McKenney , & N. Nieveen (Eds.), Educational design research (pp.52–66). London: Routledge.
    [Google Scholar]
  39. Rochet, B.
    (1995) Perception and production of second-language speech sounds by adults. In W. Strange (Ed.), Speech perception and linguistic experience: Issues in cross language research (pp.379–410). Timonium, MD: York Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  40. Schmitt, N.
    (2000) Vocabulary in language teaching. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  41. Shams, L. , & Seitz, A. R.
    (2008) Benefits of multisensory learning. Trends in Cognitive Sciences, 12(11), 411–417. doi:  10.1016/j.tics.2008.07.006
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2008.07.006 [Google Scholar]
  42. Teaman, B. D. , & Acton, W. R.
    (2013) Haptic (movement and touch for better) pronunciation. In N. Sonda & A. Krause (Eds.), JALT 2012 Conference Proceedings. Tokyo: JALT.
    [Google Scholar]
  43. The Design-Based Research Collective
    The Design-Based Research Collective (2003) Design-based research: An emerging paradigm for educational inquiry. Educational Researcher, 32(1), 5–8. 10.3102/0013189X032001005
    https://doi.org/10.3102/0013189X032001005 [Google Scholar]
  44. van den Akker, J.
    (2006) Principles and methods of development research. In J. van den Akker , K. Gravemeijer , S. McKenney , & N. Nieveen (Eds.), Educational design research (pp.1–14). London: Routledge. 10.4324/9780203088364
    https://doi.org/10.4324/9780203088364 [Google Scholar]
  45. van Zeeland, H., & Schmitt, N.
    (2013) Incidental vocabulary acquisition through L2 listening: A dimensions approach. System, 41, 609–624. 10.1016/j.system.2013.07.012
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2013.07.012 [Google Scholar]
  46. Vygotsky, L. S.
    (1986) Thought and Language. Cambridge: MIT Press.
    [Google Scholar]
  47. Wesche, M. , & Paribakht, T. S.
    (1996) Enhancing vocabulary acquisition through reading: A hierarchy of text-related exercise types. The Canadian Modern Language Review, 52(2), 155–178. 10.3138/cmlr.52.2.155
    https://doi.org/10.3138/cmlr.52.2.155 [Google Scholar]
  48. Zheng, Y.
    (2012) Exploring long-term productive vocabulary development in an EFL context: The role of motivation. System, 40, 104–119. doi:  10.1016/j.system.2012.01.007
    https://doi.org/10.1016/j.system.2012.01.007 [Google Scholar]

Data & Media loading...

This is a required field
Please enter a valid email address
Approval was successful
Invalid data
An Error Occurred
Approval was partially successful, following selected items could not be processed due to error