Introduction.Nowadays is really important for us to have the necessary skills, new competences toestablish interaction with the people that is why, language it has been a matter for scientistsin the last decades. Many of them have provided different point of view about if a person isable to acquire a first language, so then, what happen when people have to learn a secondlanguage; furthermore, the students?, is there any factor that contributes to the process ofacquire a second language?, also if people are not able to learn a second language, thisstatement it is true o false?. The aim of this review is to, analyze and explore differenttheories that explain how a student can acquire a second language. In addition, the paper willaddress an insight of the main theory assessed by Krashen (Second Language Acquisition)and the different hypothesis of it, also there are others views from a psychologicalperspectives focus on motivation as well as attitude, among others. The reaction paperaddresses questions concerned on how students come to internalize the linguistic features ofanother language, and how they make it work during the process of understanding andproduction of language. Summary.Through the years, some authors have been constantly studying the process of how a secondlanguage can be acquired, especially for older students. According to the text, it will be givencurrent methods which would point out their contribution they have had in the process of asecond language acquisition. The text called “Written and Second Language Acquisition”(chapter 2) explains one of the most well known Krashen’s Theory of Second LanguageAcquisition”, from a psychological perspective. The chapter 2 copes with internal andexternal implications in language acquisition, that attempts to make a distinction about thedeveloping of a second language, that includes the differences between learning andacquiring a second language. The first hypothesis called learning, according to Krashen(2003) argues that the language is a conscious process, it means that “students are aware onthe process of learning, that takes place in or out of school”1, on the contrary, the second1 The learning/acquisition hypothesis, Krashen, “Written and second language acquisition” chapter 2, pag 36..
hypothesis called acquisition, is related to a subconscious process and it can be acquired dayby day, very similar to the process children undergo when they acquire a first language.Another aspect of acquire a second language is through the natural order, this means thatsome features of the language appears first than others, for example, at the beginning childrenproduce vowel sounds, later on consonants and so on. As a sequence, we find the monitorhypothesis, Krashen suggests that we learn a language in a community, which allows us tocheck what we say and write. Moreover, there is the input hypothesis, in this point, Krashentalks about how students are exposing to language in real context, at the same time, Swainestablishes “that students also need the opportunities to produce comprehensible output”2.The last theory talks about the affective filter, as Krashen mentioned before, the developmentof the language will be under the influence by the appropriate environment for students.It is necessary to draw attention to Schumann’s Theory which complement with Krashen’sideas. Schuman takes into account the psychological factors, such as motivation, attitude andculture shock, that is “students with low motivation and negative attitude toward members ofthe mainstream culture are less to acquire the language of the mainstream”3. Furthermore,the last hypothesis called the Critical period emphasizes the idea that there is limits in theprocess of acquire a second language, in other words, adults can learn a second language thesame as children; however, adults retain their accent. Evaluation.Krashen’s theory was a useful source to build up the basis of what we know now as a secondlanguage acquisition. As Krashen assessed, human beings are capable of learn a secondlanguage, and it is important to clarify this point. On one hand, because according toLennenberg and his Critical period hypothesis, people at a certain time are not able to acquirea second language, , because there are some cognitive systems that are not develop anymore,besides “children are better learners than adults”4; nonetheless, if that would not be possible,how is that there are people teaching a second language, what is more, how can studentsdevelop the skills to produce a second language?. On the other hand, through analyzingKrashen’s thoughts, we also consider the idea that we overlook some details for acquire asecond language, for instance when we think back on how we started to learn a second2 Swain, 1985.3 The affective filter, Krashen, “Written and second language acquisition” chapter 2, pag 39.4 The critical period hypothesis, Lennenberg, “Written and second language acquisition”, chapter 2, pag 41..
language, we might infer that it was just a matter of vocabulary and some grammar rules, buton the contrary, we started learning a second language when we find out something thatmakes sense for us. As has been said to learn a second language is necessary create thecomfortable environment and provide the students the enough input to produce language. Conclusion.It can be concluded from what Krashen and the other authors have stated that, acquire asecond language it is possible for all humans, the difference is underlined in the way in whichevery student learn. As far as we know until now, we as teachers our main focus is on thestudents, we need to foster not only the capacity to learn and understand a new language,but also build up a good atmosphere; in order, to become them proficient users of thelanguage, so this responsibility is up to us. Finally, the texts made us understand that peoplehave innate and brain abilities to develop another language, which is not an issue thatsomeone would find in a book or a notebook, instead, in the environment itself..
REACTION PAPER “People cannot learn a Second Language.” Cristian Diaz Ancaten – Makarena Sanchez Campos April, 5th, 2013. English teacher Lucía del Rosario Ubilla Rosales.