The french kitchen: Task-based learning in an instrumented kitchen

Clare J. Hooper, Anne Preston, Madeline Balaam, Paul Seedhouse, Daniel Jackson, Cuong Pham, Cassim Ladha, Karim Ladha, Thomas Plötz, Patrick Olivier

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference PaperResearchpeer-review

29 Citations (Scopus)


Ubiquitous computing technologies have traditionally striven to augment objects and the environment with sensing capabilities to enable them to respond appropriately to the needs of the individuals in the environment. This paper considers how such technologies might be harnessed to support language learning, and specifically Task-Based Learning (TBL). Task-Based Learning (TBL) involves doing meaningful tasks in a foreign language, emphasising the language's use in practice. TBL is seen as a highly engaging and motivating approach to learning a language, but is difficult to do in the classroom. Here, learners typically engage in activities that only simulate 'real-world' tasks, and as such only rehearse language use, rather than applying the language in practice. In this paper, we explore how an instrumented, context-aware environment whose design is grounded in pedagogical principles can support TBL. We present the French Kitchen, an instrumented kitchen for English speakers who are learning French, and describe a 46- participant evaluation of the kitchen. Based on the evaluation, we provide a set of design recommendations for those building instrumented systems for TBL.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationUbiComp'12 - Proceedings of the 2012 ACM Conference on Ubiquitous Computing
Number of pages10
Publication statusPublished - 19 Oct 2012
Externally publishedYes
EventACM International Conference on Ubiquitous Computing 2012 - Pittsburg, United States of America
Duration: 5 Sept 20128 Sept 2012
Conference number: 14th


ConferenceACM International Conference on Ubiquitous Computing 2012
Abbreviated titleUbicomp 2012
Country/TerritoryUnited States of America
Internet address


  • Building-people interaction
  • Instrumented environment
  • Situated interaction
  • Task-based learning

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