Learning second language through restaurant menu dish names

Alba Graziano

Abstract


This article follows research carried out by the author on the semiotics and pragmalinguistics of restaurant menus. The context is a training experience about how to teach LSP (Language for Special Purposes) in a CLIL (Content and Language Integrated Learning) environment with teachers in Istituti Alberghieri. The final output is the compilation of a multilingual menu, in the shared conviction that a communicatively effective menu in different languages can enhance the quality of restaurants and make them successful with tourists. The “little texts” composing dish names prove to be interesting under the lexical and the syntactical viewpoints: these are the language levels playing the most significant role in the info-marketing strategies adopted by menus and the ones presenting the greatest difficulties in translating from Italian into French or English. A careful Error Analysis conducted on a corpus of a hundred menus from the Italian region of Lazio proves a successful scaffolding strategy and a practical metalinguistic tool to lead learners—CLIL teachers and students alike—to the production of their own menus, even more when combined with cooperative learning, gamification, graphic facilitators and… lots of fun!

Keywords


LSP/ESP; CLIL; restaurant menus

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DOI: https://doi.org/10.20368/1971-8829/1567



Journal of e-Learning and Knowledge Society | ISSN (online) 1971 - 8829 | ISSN (paper) 1826 - 6223 © 2017 Je-LKS - Italian e-Learning Association (SIe-L).