18. The Whole is the Sum of its Parts: Complexity and the Language Classroom

20/11/2015

The Whole is the Sum of its Parts

Complexity and the Language Classroom

In my first post ‘What I hope to get from the diploma course’ I use an image of a fractal to illustrate the relationship between complex systems and the language classroom, and in several of my posts I draw this analogy.

This page attempts illustrate some of my thinking behind this (see Illustration 1) as well as referring to the work of other practitioners who discuss complexity in relation to language structure and learning (see Illustration 2).

At this stage in my thinking I feel that this concept need to maintain some kind of elasticity, so it suits me keep these thoughts in illustrative form rather than attempting to articulate them solely through words.

In order to try and explain the fractal illustration though, I will say this: the whole is the sum of its parts. In the first illustration I try to give examples of what those parts might be comprised of.

complexity-page-001

Illustration 1: Complexity theory and the language classroom

complexity-page-002

Illustration 2: More about complexity in relation to language and teaching

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