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Did you learn English as a second language?

by Vee (follow)
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Did you learn English as a second language? If so, what advice would you give to somebody training to become an English language teacher?

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If English is not the person's first language?
I would say good-luck.

There are so many ways to say certain words in the English language, and understand them.
Depending on their accent I would say will determine how well they do, and their understanding of just how many words sound the same, but are spelt differently in English.

It will be a real challenge that's for sure.

English is my first language. However, I think people who learn English as a second language have a definite advantage as an English language teacher than most native English speakers. This is because they've had to learn all the complex grammatical rules of English (rather than subconsciously learn them as a child), and can therefore explain them much more easily to others. A few years ago I started an English language teaching course and really struggled - even though I'm uni-educated and always got high marks with the essays I write. In contrast, classmates who had learnt English as their second language (and were fluent speakers) didn't have so many problems because they were consciously aware of many English language rules that exist. I'd advise your friends to 'go for it' - provided they're fluent with both spoken and written English.
Yes, hokkein is my first language I find that I am slower in speaking and writing english cause I have to rearrange the grammar in my head befoe I speak it. Grammar is the greater hurdle to communicating in english since to us its backwards. I would say that you stick with simple words first that you would use in everyday language and stay away from slang!
No, English is my mother tongue.
No, English is my first language.
yep but im more comfy speaking English than other language. my advice would be to try to get the person to try to think of similarities eg natuurlijk mean of course. if you think of saying naturally, the word is more similar and its an easy way to recall. obviously, (I think) words that use the alphabet, not pictures (asia) or letters going backward w/ a line underneath to represent something (Russia) will be a lot more easy I think. that's all I got
Thanks for your input, Simon. :-)
by Vee
The intricacies of the English Language are fraught with mis-adventures for the learner!
It's evolved over hundreds' of years from Latin, German, & Norman French, mostly.

I remember in Grade VIII, teacher giving example of man going to Doctor, telling him he'd 'a cow in the box'.
Doctor perplexed, so got patient to write problem down, which was 'cough in his chest'!

Patient's reasoning was: 'bough' pronounced 'bow', so 'cough' was 'cow'.
'Chest' is a 'box'!

As English speakers', we thought it funny, but it was a good example of how learners' of English must find it very difficult to understand, & learn to speak it.


No. English is my first language. My uncle came here with no English and he told me that he learnt English from reading comic books. So my advice would be to keep it simple and use pictures to illustrate the words.
Well, as a Pom, English is my native tongue. I had a dear friend at school who was French and she was trying to tell me that something was "HARD, like paper". . . . after a few rounds of what the heck, it turns out she wanted to say it was "STRONG, like pepper". Boy, did we have a good laugh! As for teaching . . . I agree with others here - it must be kept simple or the student shuts down.
by Rice
No, it's my first language. I'm glad I didn't have to learn as a second language, I think so of it's been rules are loony.
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