Second Language Learning
When a person decides to learn a second language, there are several perspectives that should be considered. This is because little or no emphasis is given to contextual factors such as societal, social and individual factors (Center for Applied Linguistics, 2000). On the contrary, attention is based on the teaching methodologies. Furthermore, culture is of significant importance to any individual who wants to learn a second language. Therefore, the myths and fallacies that are associated with second language learning should be shunned altogether (Genesee, 1987). This article will focus on the learning of a second language together will the stated guidelines.
Contextual factors that are related to learning a second language are considered as the perspectives of learning the language. These factors include: the language, native language proficiency, dialect and register, language attitudes, language status, the learner, diverse needs and goals, home support, peers influence, knowledge of the second language, role models, the learning procedure and process, learning styles, classroom interaction and motivation among other factors (Center for Applied Linguistics, 2000). All these factors have a tremendous impact on the learner and the learning procedure. Therefore, the learner has to be acquainted to positivity in the learning procedure so that he/ she can be able to grasp the second language as expected.
Culture is also identified as an important aspect of second language teaching. Culture can be defined as an incorporated prototype of human conduct, which includes customs, beliefs and values. Anthropologists and linguists associate linguistic competence with the learner’s cultural behavior. This is a clear depiction of how culture features in linguistic forms. The information presented is of vital importance to those in pursuit of a second language (Center for Applied Linguistics, 2003).
In conclusion, individuals should be able to avoid all the myths and misconceptions that are related to learning a second language. The myths and misconceptions are outlined below.
1. The young are more skilled in acquiring information.
2. Children learn second languages more easily.
3. If the learner spends more time in learning the second language, the easier the understanding process.
4. All children learn in the same way (Center for Applied Linguistics, 1992).
The factors stated above are all myths and misconceptions. For instance, the teachers should be able to differentiate between the myths and misconceptions so that they are able to deal appropriately with the learners (Genesee, 1987).
Center for Applied Linguistics (2000). Contextual factors in second language acquisition. Retrieved from http://www.cal.org/resources/digest/0005contextual.html
Center for Applied Linguistics (2003). Culture in second language teaching. Retrieved from http://www.cal.org/resources/digest/0309peterson.html
Center for Applied Linguistics (1992). Myths and misconceptions about second language learning. Retrieved from http://www.cal.org/resources/digest/myths.html
Genesee, F. (1987). Learning through two languages: Studies of immersion and bilingual education. New York: Newbury House Press.