The four language skills

The four language skills refer to speaking, writing and listening, reading. The first. Speaking and writing are called the ‘productive’ skills because they deal with producing spoken and written text, whereas listening and reading skills are called the ‘receptive’ skills because they refer to being receptive to, receiving or taking in information through spoken and written text. The word ‘text’ refers to any oral or written forms of communication.

I heard a comment on Youtube the other day that referred to ‘multi-sensory modality’ which alluded to the development of the four language skills in order to facilitate language learning, that is, I speak-I hear and I write-I see (read). Incorporating these strategies into Maori language lessons can provide guidance and good practice for language learning in the classroom, home, Marae wherever. However, this is not as easy as it sounds as teachers are presented with the challenge of finding ways to develop these skills in their students. This of course, assumes that teachers have knowledge of the underlying issues relating to these skills, for example, being aware of their students in terms of their pronunciation of words, applying cognitive/mental thought processes to language understanding, self-correction when writing in the target language (i.e. the language you are learning), identifying strong and weak language skills in students etc. By nurturing the four language skills is part and parcel of increasing students’ accuracy and fluency in te reo.
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