The World of Languages – Part 2

Welcome Back!

Our first article on “The World of Languages Part 1” gave an insight on the pivotal role additional languages play in the development of the brain. Our language acquisition team at MBIS believe in it and  hone the skills of our language learners by leaving a mark of their expertise.

Making a difference

Our Language Acquisition team enforce certain concepts in a friendly and empathetic manner. Through these concepts, the teacher and learner interact. The teacher encourages, gives examples, supports and affirms ideas, offers analogies, metaphors, and challenges existing ideas in order to assist thinking in a process termed ‘scaffolding’. This interaction becomes internalized as cognitive change in a learner. Errors in students’ speeches indicate progress in the language acquisition process. Our teachers model correct grammar patterns but don’t overtly correct their errors, thus responding to the intended meaning, students are attempting to communicate and reduce their anxiety. Vocabulary and concepts are made comprehensible by using synonyms, gestures, facial expression, intonation or any other extra linguistic cues to clarify their messages. Differentiation is vital and teachers adapt to the needs of the learners by providing a suitable climate of learning and a plan that suits the ca

pability of every individual. Academic as well as social interaction is encouraged using a range of strategies; some examples are as follows:

  1.       Think- pair- share
  2.       Listen – read – discuss
  3.       Directed Reading Thinking Activity
  4.       Reciprocal Teaching
  5.       Selective Highlighting
  6.       Story Maps
  7.       Structured note taking
  8.       RAFT writing
  9.       Question Answer Relationship
  10.     Role plays

Things to Remember

Parents and teachers must understand that speech should not be forced. It emerges naturally after a silent period that may last an hour or a year. Therefore, lessons don’t need to be sequenced grammatically and structures should not be the focus of the class. Repetition of dialogues or error correction helps only conscious learning, which is less important than the subconscious language acquisition. Providing natural language opportunities with low anxiety environment at home and at school is the crux of acquiring a language.

Taskeen Sheikh

HOD Language Acquisition