A1 Journal article (refereed)
Teacher smiles as an interactional and pedagogical resource in the classroom (2020)

Jakonen, T., & Evnitskaya, N. (2020). Teacher smiles as an interactional and pedagogical resource in the classroom. Journal of Pragmatics, 163, 18-31. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pragma.2020.04.005

JYU authors or editors

Publication details

All authors or editors: Jakonen, Teppo; Evnitskaya, Natalia

Journal or series: Journal of Pragmatics

ISSN: 0378-2166

eISSN: 1879-1387

Publication year: 2020

Volume: 163

Pages range: 18-31

Publisher: Elsevier

Publication country: Netherlands

Publication language: English

DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pragma.2020.04.005

Publication open access: Openly available

Publication channel open access: Partially open access channel

Publication is parallel published (JYX): https://jyx.jyu.fi/handle/123456789/69005


In classroom settings, laughter and smiles are resources for action that are available to both teachers and students. Recent interactional studies have documented how students use these resources to deal with trouble of various kind, but less is known about the sequential and activity contexts of teachers’ laughter-relevant practices, as well as their pedagogical functions. We use multimodal conversation analysis (CA) to investigate the interactional unfolding and pedagogical orientations of teacher smiles during instructional IRE (initiation-response-evaluation) sequences in a corpus of 37 bilingual lessons collected in schools in Finland and Spain. In analysing the focal smiles, we pay attention to their temporal relationships to students’ preceding and subsequent facial expressions and the unfolding of on-going talk. We argue that smiling can index teachers’ affiliative and pedagogical responsiveness to troubles and competences implied by prior student actions. The analysis of selected data fragments shows how smiling is part of multimodal action packages through which teachers manage momentary action disalignments and restore a sense of students as competent actors. The findings contribute towards recent CA research on the embodied and interactional nature of teaching and learning by showing some ways in which smiling is a situated practice used for professional purposes.

Keywords: smile; classroom work; teaching situation; teacher-pupil relationship; content and language integrated learning; conversation analysis; laughter

Free keywords: smiling; classroom interaction; content and language integrated learning (CLIL); conversation analysis; laughter

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Related projects

Ministry reporting: Yes

Reporting Year: 2020

JUFO rating: 3

Last updated on 2022-17-06 at 10:51