Sunday, September 26, 2010

Learning Language

   Like most individuals I began learning language years before I entered into a formal classroom environment. The constant interaction between family members and the unconditional praise at every attempt to read or speak was all the motivation one needed to learn both English and Spanish. Upon entering into the classroom it became the role of the educator to build an awareness of print and its’ various forms and functions by encouraging students to guess what written language says, read to and with students while encouraging prediction of events, and encourage students to experiment with reading and writing as much as possible (Goodman, 1986).
   In order for a learner to succeed they must be placed in a comfortable environment designed to avoid affective filters. According to Krashen (1981) if a student’s affective filter is high it can cause a barrier and comprehensible input will cease to flow through. It was my experience that I became despondent or unconcerned when presented with incomprehensible learning materials within the classroom. When the structure of my teacher’s lesson plan was limited in scope focusing on the pragmatics of English it created frustration for both myself and the other learners. As a language learner I rarely worked in groups while reviewing the repetitive worksheets commonly assigned by the instructor. Throughout the analysis of the worksheets the instructor failed to utilize affective strategies aimed towards lowering class anxiety levels and did not encourage us to take additional risks in the creation of our language learning (Oxford, 1990a).
   Allowing us students to use language on our own terms would have made the language learning process a more enjoyable experience leaving everyone involved with a stronger sense of accomplishment. In adopting a pragmatic stance of this nature I feel my sense of agency was stripped away and the voices of the classroom were silenced by the instructor resulting in the acquisition of only one language; English.
Goodman, K.  (1986).  What’s Whole in Whole Language?  Portsmouth, NH:  Heinemann   Educational Books.
Krashen, S.D. (1981). Principles and Practice in Second Language Acquisition. English Language Teaching Series. London: Prentice-Hall International (UK) Ltd.
Oxford, R. (1990a) Language learning strategies: What every teacher should know. Boston: Heinle & Heinle. In Brown, D.H. (2000) Principles of language learning and teaching 4th edition. Whiteplains, New York:  Addison Wesley Longman, Inc.


  1. Good try for your references!
    However, is it necessary indent?(들여쓰기) 2-3 space bar after the first low?

  2. Of course, I agree with your opinion. Students know about that, to learn English more effective than ever, their environment in their room is so important factor. Also your writing references,many article. Excellent ! Have a nice say :D