Language is a very important means of communication. It is very difficult to think of a society without language. It is a carrier of civilization and culture. In the case of the mother tongue, the child learns it easily, due to the favourable environment and by the great amount of exposure to the language. But, learning a second language requires conscious efforts to learn it and the exposure to the second language in most cases is limited. Majority of the students have favoured classroom instruction for the second language acquisition. This article states difficulties and solutions in learning English.
There are so many factors affect the process of learning a second language, including attitude, self-confidence, motivation, duration of exposure to the language, classroom conditions, environment, family background, and availability of competent teachers. Here the authors took up a study on analysing the various reasons for the problems faced by the second language learner. This article states difficulties and solutions in learning English.
Environment and family background play vital role in success of learning process. For example, countries like India, where majority of the people are farmers, have the poor background in education. Moreover, the income of majority of the families is not adequate. Hence, the parents are not interested in giving good education background to their children. In contrast, they are willing to engage the children in some jobs in order to earn money. This is the very basic reason and the affecting factor in teaching. This article states difficulties and solutions in learning English.
Attitude is yet another effective factor in learning a second language. Attitude is the way that you think and feel about something. The successful acquisition of a second language seems to some extent, contingent upon learners’ views of the language learning environment, the learning situation, and how they view the target language and its speakers. Like the environment and attitude, teacher’s competence is also a variable factor that affects the second language learning.
The programmatic environment refers to the atmosphere, curriculum, daily schedule and classroom routines. There are ten programmatic indicators of high quality that impact young ELLs that should be in place to support school success. This article states difficulties and solutions in learning English.
The factors are:
Organized and supportive environment. High quality environments are neat, organized, and supportive. Teachers can provide an attitude of support by placing labels in the child’s native language as well as English around the classroom (Zehler, 1994). Additionally, structuring the environment and the routines so they are predictable gives the ELL an understanding of how tasks are to proceed and how to navigate the room. When the environment is supportive and predictable the learners feel safe and can use their cognitive energy to process content and language rather than focusing on the environment. This article states difficulties and solutions in learning English.
Positive and Strong Interaction
Positive teacher and child interactions. High quality programs promote and demonstrate positive conversations and learning opportunities. Teachers maintain a pleasant demeanor while working with all children. ELLs can feel emotionally safe and enjoy the learning process because it is free from stress and pressure. Additionally, the interactions that teachers have with the children demonstrate care and respect, while educationally focused. Teachers can send these messages using smiles and soothing tones, when the language barrier is high.
Increased opportunities for peer interactions. Peer scaffolding can be very productive for supporting ELLs. High quality programs offer time and learning opportunities that support the use of peer interactions. Strategies such as Think-Pair-Share, and cooperative learning increase the opportunities for peer interactions in a structured way.
Use of Home Language
Strategic use of the child’s first language. Support and maintenance of the young ELLs home language contributes to the learning of English (NAEYC, 1995). High quality programs have teachers that find ways to use the child’s home language to display respect and provide scaffolding to increase first language proficiency. This allows the native language to serve as a frame of reference for the second language and the children become more willing participants in the learning process.
Explicit Vocabulary Instruction
Teaching vocabulary purposefully to young ELLs has a positive correlation with academic outcomes (Yesil-Dagli, 2011). High quality programs plan for purposeful and explicit vocabulary instruction. Instruction in vocabulary contributes to higher reading ability and school functioning.
Focus on Second Language
Frequent ongoing assessment of the child’s first language, second language, and other domains of development. A strong assessment program and appropriate assessment practices benefit ELLs because the teacher is aware of the effectiveness of instruction. High quality programs support these practices to ensure effective instruction for the ELL (NAEYC, 2005). Teachers use appropriate assessment strategies to gain an understanding of the child’s current proficiency in the native and second language. Additionally, the teacher employs formal and informal means of collecting data in all developmental and academic areas.
Small group and individual instruction allows the teacher to focus in on the needs. High quality programs provide many opportunities for this style of instruction through the use of group time activities and centres. This individualized instruction creates an avenue for needed differentiation to occur.
The program structure refers to the organization of program delivery. High quality programs maintain a structure that is suitable to the learner as to how the language instruction is delivered. Examples would be Dual Language or Bilingual, Pull-Out, or Push In English language instruction. When teaching young ELLs, high quality programs and best practices recommend bilingual education as the most effective model.
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