Watch before you read...
A Think Tank on TBLT is valuable for those of us in L2 contexts, because our students get so few other opportunities to communicate in the target language. So, we will start with a video lecture by the most prominent expert in the field, Rod Ellis, and throw in a short one that defines TBLT components. Then Jason Walters will tell us about his own experiences with TBLT and what is coming up in the rest of the issue.
The Think Tank articles work especially well together in a wonderful arc from basic concepts to brain connections. Paul Leeming and Justin Harris give us an amazingly understandable explanation of what TBLT is, followed by Heather Kretschmer zeroing in on the crux of TBLT, the task cycle. Both offer classroom examples. Then Think Tank veteran Amanda Gillis-Furutaka connects Dave and Jane Willis’ theories to brain sciences and Curtis Kelly goes deeper by analyzing how some recent discoveries in neuroscience show us why TBLT is more than an “alternative” approach; it is a necessary one.
To keep us from getting too serious, we recruited our long-time Think Tank muse, Marc Helgesen, to tell our favorite story of 202o in the PLUS section. It is a story about how one of his learners dove in, and out, and in again, to neuroscience.