Essay - Esl Education Teaching Strategies for English as a Second Language...


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ESL education

Teaching strategies for English as a second language

Picture yourself in an international airport. You have a few minutes to reach your connecting flight, and all the signage is in the native language. There are no clues as ***** which corridor will lead to ***** airline, and the people, while appearing friendly, and speak ***** more words of your language than you know ***** *****irs. You know that all around you the words are printed ***** will point you in ***** direction of your flight, but you might as well be bl*****d as expect ***** be able to decipher the words. How would you feel? Frustration, may***** anger at the impossible nature of ***** situation would likely fill your mind. The unpredictable energy of these emotions ***** make it even more difficult to make positive progress toward learning to decipher the coded signs and monitors

This setting is an adult version of what a child encounters who comes to *****n Engl*****h *****ing school who does not know how to speak, or read the English language. His home is a place in which the language of his parents is spoken fluently, but in school, the teachers, book, bullet***** boards and assignments are all printed in a ***** ***** that he nei*****r can ***** nor understand.

The good news ***** ***** ***** in elementary school, the prospects of a student learning a new l*****nguage are ***** most favorable. The *****ion that language acquisition is a gradual process is not univers*****y accepted in the teaching community. Field studies ***** pointed to the child's ability ***** acquire a ***** during specific times in ***** development th*****t the common belief regarding language acqu*****ition is that children are preprogrammed to acquire language at a definite point in their development. The view ***** the child possesses a capacity for language that the ***** has lost is widely sh*****d (e.g., Andersson, 1969; Jakobovits, 1972; Wilkins, 1972) and has been *****malized in what is known as the "critical period" hypo*****sis

***** critical period for language learning is usually defined as lasting from about age 2 to puberty. Before the child reaches age *****, language acqu*****ition is impossible because of maturational factors, and after ***** the natural acquisition ***** language is thought to be blocked by a loss of "cerebral plasticity" resulting from ***** completion of the development of ***** dominance through lateralization of the ***** function. (McLaughlin, 1984) The application of this predisposition toward language ***** during young childhood is ***** in the classroom, in early elementary school ESL *****s are at their most operative learn*****g ability. The ESL teacher's job, as difficult as it is, will never ***** easier than in the formative elementary school years.

According to ESL teacher Kristen Miles (2004), assistance from the child's home can not be expected. "The parents are completely supportive of the school, and want the child to learn *****. It's just that the parents believe that ***** is the schools ***** to teach the Engl*****h language as part

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