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Mrs. Booth's ESL Corner

Summary of the Child's Language Environment and Learning Strategies

The Child's Language Environment

  1. There is NO DIRECT PRESSURE to learn (no tests, no grades, etc.).
  2. There is NO TIME LIMIT for learning (no end of the semester).
  3. There is NO WAY OF ESCAPING into a different language (no vacations).
  4. The language is NOT SEQUENCED BY GRAMMAR OR VOCABULARY (no textbook).
  5. There is LOTS OF REPETITION. His life contains repetitions and the language around him reflects it.
  6. Both the LANGUAGE AND THE WORLD ARE NEW (and therefore interesting).
  7. All the language is spoken IN THE CONTEXT OF THE SURROUNDING WORLD.
  8. THE LANGUAGE IS ALL AROUND. The child has native speakers of the language speaking to him often.
  9. The child has MANY OPPORTUNITIES FOR USING the language to communicate to those around him.
  10. Much of THE LANGUAGE IS SIMPLIFIED to the level of understanding of the child. It is tailor-made for the child.

The Child's Learning Strategies

  1. The child in NOT INTERESTED IN LANGUAGE for its own sake.
  2. The child is NOT DISTURBED by the language he does not understand.
  3. The child ENJOYS THE REPETITIVE events of his life, and uses this enjoyment to help him learn.
  4. The child USES HIS PRIMARY INTERESTS to help him learn.
  5. The child directs his attention to things that are EASY TO UNDERSTAND.
  6. The child possesses a natural desire TO CALL AN OBJECT BY ITS NAME.
  7. The child uses his natural desire TO PARTICIPATE IN THE LIFE AROUND HIM to help him learn new language.
  8. The child adds words to his speaking vocabulary more easily IF HE ALREADY KNOWS HOW TO PRONOUNCE THEM.
  9. The child IMMEDIATELY USES the language, and his SUCCESS IN COMMUNICATION BUILDS CONFIDENCE.
  10. The child brings TREMENDOUS INGENUITY to the task of learning.
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