1995 paper by Ohta providing support for pairwork in the language classroom. Some illustrative quotes:
"No longer on display in front of the class or locked into language production controlled by the teacher's allocation of turns, Becky and her partner Mark actively use Japanese to both regulate and perform the assigned task, injecting their own brand of humor as they go along."
"The data reveal that both Becky and Mark are able to learn and progress through collaborative meaning-making activity in Japanese. Not only do we see Becky, the learner with stronger language skills, assisting Mark by repeating herself so that he can understand her, but these data reveal that even though Mark's skills are weaker than Becky'es, Becky learns through working with him. Collaborative pairwork with Mark allows Becky to experiment with and refine her own language use and play with the target utterance until she is able to say it with fluency and ease."
"The present data show that while working on the target structure, the pair work context allows Mark and Becky the flexibility 1) to work on the assigned role-play activity; 2) to express humor; 3) to actively test hypotheses through language play; 4) to converse in Japanse about the here-and-now; 5) to experiment with lexical choice; 6) to use Japanese for conversational management including modulation of the pace of the interaction, repair and role negotiation; 7) to use the L2 for regulatory functions (task management); and 8) to have a learning experience that allows each learner to work on their own tasks in the L2 while engaged in meaningful interaction."
Via Phil Chappell