Age in TESL

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Age in TESL

  1. 1. AGE IN TEACHING ENGLISH AS A SECOND LANGUAGE ` XENIA S. BAESA
  2. 2. AGE IN Second Language Learning <ul><li>Child-Adult Differences in L2 Acquisition </li></ul><ul><li>Benefits of Learning Language at a Young Age </li></ul><ul><li>Aging and Learning Ability </li></ul><ul><li>Age Related Factors in Language Learning </li></ul>
  3. 3. Age in Second Language Learning <ul><li>A second language (L2) is any language learned after the first language (L1) or mother tongue. Some auxiliary languages are used primarily as lingua francas. </li></ul>
  4. 4. <ul><li>     </li></ul>Age in Language Learning - Hlytenstam (1992)& Abrahamsson (2003)
  5. 5. Child-Adult Differences in L2 Acquisition <ul><li>Adults proceed through the earlier stages of syntactic and morphological development faster than children. </li></ul><ul><li>Older children acquire faster than younger children. </li></ul><ul><li>Acquirers who begin natural exposure to L2 during childhood achieve higher language proficiency. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Experimental Approaches to L2 Learning <ul><li>Older children are better than younger children at learning a second language. </li></ul><ul><li>Adults are better than children at learning a second language. </li></ul><ul><li>Immigrants who start learning a second language younger end up better speakers than those who start older. </li></ul>
  7. 7. Explanations: (approaches) <ul><li>Cognitive - the level of the mind may be different </li></ul><ul><li>Social- the types of social role and relationship may differ </li></ul><ul><li>Physical - hearing or speaking or brain storage may differ </li></ul><ul><li>Input- the language encountered may be different </li></ul>
  8. 8. Benefits of Learning Language at a Young Age <ul><li>Children Learn Second Language Naturally </li></ul><ul><li>Exposing a child allows him to optimize his learning potential and to shape the brain at its flexible stage. Young children can acquire native-like-fluency through practicing explicit grammar rules and rote drills. </li></ul><ul><li>Window of Opportunity </li></ul><ul><li>1)Young learners enrich their lives and open up doors to their future by gaining: </li></ul>
  9. 9. Window of Opportunity <ul><li>Greater intercultural appreciation and sensitivity. </li></ul><ul><li>Ability to learn additional languages easily. </li></ul><ul><li>A competitive edge in future markets and global marketplace. </li></ul><ul><li>2) Young learners can acquire native-like fluency as easily as they learned to walk. Adult learners have to work through established first-language system. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Learning L2 at an Early Age <ul><li>Capture the Critical Period- at about seven months, a baby’s neocortex develops to the point that their long-term memory starts working. During this stage until age 12 or 13, the brain begins losing its plasticity where children have their greatest potential to absorb and retain language skills. </li></ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><ul><li>-Francois Thibaut- </li></ul></ul></ul></ul></ul>
  11. 11. Learning L2 at an Early Age <ul><li>Boost English Language Skills- learning the meaning of a foreign word enhances a student’s chance of knowing the meaning of an English word. </li></ul><ul><li>Improve Verbal Test Scores – </li></ul><ul><li>Speak like a Native – language is stored in the left hemisphere, with pronunciation and grammar in the Brocas Area. </li></ul>
  12. 12. Learning L2 at an Early Age <ul><li>Learn Before We’re Self-Conscious </li></ul><ul><li>Children’s Languages Classes use Whole Brain Learning – language education for both children and adults is more successful when techniques are used that the link the left hemisphere’s skills (logic, math etc.) with brain skills (emotion, music, voice melody. –”Children remember what makes them happy .” </li></ul>
  13. 13. Learning L2 at an Early Age <ul><li>Future Careers – the more we know, the more we are worth . Learning multiple languages gives us the tool to do business in a global world. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Aging and Learning Ability <ul><li>The greatest obstacle to older adult language learning is the doubt- in the minds of both learner and teacher. Most people assume that “ the younger the better” applies in language learning. However, studies compare the rate of language acquisition. Adults actually learn languages more quickly than children in early stages. If further indicates that adults can attain a working ability to communicate easier and more rapid. </li></ul>
  15. 15. Aging and Learning Ability <ul><li>Older Learner Stereotypes </li></ul>The stereotype of the older adults as a poor language learner can be traced to two roots: 1)a theory of brain and how it matures; 2) classroom practice that discriminate against the older learner.
  16. 16. Stereotypes <ul><li>“Brain lost cerebral plasticity after puberty”. Adult and young learners follows developmental differences in the brain. The advantage of the adults have superior language learning capabilities where neural cells are responsible for higher-order linguistic processes such semantic relations and grammatical sensitivity, higher-order associations and generalizations. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Age Related Factors in LL <ul><li>Classroom Practices – certain language teaching methods for adults such as auditory discrimination for learning may be appropriate. Oral drills and memorization are to be discriminated but rather teach by integrating new concepts and materials into already existing cognitive structures. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Helping Older Adults Succeed <ul><li>Eliminate Affective Barriers – enhance affective factors such as motivation and self-confidence. </li></ul><ul><li>Make the material relevant and motivating- provide opportunities for learners to work together, focus understanding rather than producing the language, reduce error correction and avoid oral repetition, extensive pronunciation correction & free speech. </li></ul>
  19. 19. CONCLUSION <ul><li>An approach which stresses development of receptive skills (listening) may be offered to adults. </li></ul>Teaching older Adults to become self-directed, independent as learner and self-motivated.
  20. 20. Learning Characteristics & Teaching Approaches Children: concrete operational stage <ul><li>Characteristics: </li></ul><ul><li>Process languages through sensory experience and intelligence develops in the form of motor actions thus, receive more concrete input. </li></ul><ul><li>Need concrete references in the language </li></ul>
  21. 21. <ul><li>Learning activities for children involve exercises of classification, ordering, location and conservation using concrete objects </li></ul>Children: concrete operational stage Adolescents: formal operation stage Characteristics: 1. Learning was influenced by feelings of self-consciousness (how they appear or what image is projected or perceived)
  22. 22. Adolescents 2. Learners at this stage acquire mature attitude which directs them the adult position of tolerance. Learning activities for adolescents require adaptation using present challenges and individual’s own preferences.
  23. 23. Adults Characteristics: 1.Are notorious for lack of language structure mastery. 2.Sensitivity reaches its lowest point then levels- off with attainment. 3. Have greater cognitive maturity, better learning strategies and study habits, focus and goal orientation, longer attention span, ability to make variety of associations and better short-term memory.
  24. 24. Adults Learning Activities for Adults limit level of mastery and involves small group problem solving and discussion in a process of mutual inquiry.
  25. 25. Age in Second Language Learning Investment in teacher training for foreign language would gain more instructive effect when different age group are educated with appropriate teaching methods.

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